For the up-and-coming artists of today, breaking into the music industry isn’t the same as it used to be. The classic rags-to-riches stories that have typically begun with a few simple ingredients— artistic talent, a hungry label, a fine-tuned contract— they’re kinda pretty much gone. Well, not so much gone as just aren’t done that way anymore, you know?
And music promotion for artists already signed on? Forget about it. That old formula is gone, too. (Think about it: Are people more likely to walk into a Target to buy a new album, or pop into their Spotify app to discover new music?) As the old adage goes, the medium is the message— with the online world of streaming apps representing the medium, and the message being the music itself.
Spotify has actually been around for a while— founded in 2006 in Stockholm, Sweden! So, what’s different now at this moment? How is the music industry continuing to change (with Spotify leading the way!) when it comes to listening to your favorite artists and tracks, and while also discovering new ones?
One word— two syllables, rhymes with click-clock. Yup! You guessed it: The one, the only, the famous and infamous— why it’s the most downloaded app itself at the moment! TikTok. For all aspiring artists of today, TikTok musician is your name and organic music marketing is the game.
Now how does this affect you? (You: musician, music promoter, producer, record company, music marketing department, and everyone else around and in-between the music and the $$.)
How do we help ride the wave of this app-to-app trend? (Us: URLgenius— an awesome platform that’s home to the most top-tier deep linking and QR code generator you’ve ever seen— a.k.a the indispensable marketing tools that can seamlessly send your listeners from one smartphone app to another!). We make linking to open the Spotify App from the TikTok app easier than ever for any music marketing pro.
Okay, so TikTok to open the Spotify app? Deep linking? What does it all mean for music promotion? Read on, we’ve got you covered. First, here’s why learning about this music marketing technique will increase the number of listeners and followers of your music.
In a webinar hosted by Insider, Universal Music Group’s SVP of Digital Strategy and Business Development, Kristen Bender, stated: “TikTok has really become a critical part of artist storytelling. Our labels have been extremely leaning into the platform.”
Regardless of individual artists’ (very mixed) feelings on the matter, labels are keeping their eyes on the numbers that are leading this new age way of artist promotion. For example, according to a study conducted by MRC Data (a leading music analytics company), TikTok trending songs often appear on the Billboard 100 and/or Spotify Viral 50 charts. On top of that, around 67% of TikTok users are more likely to seek out the songs they hear on the app on various music-streaming platforms.
Many record labels even have staff dedicated to monitoring TikTok in order to stoke the fires of a trending song as it begins to take off.
‘Our entire music catalog is effectively tracked on a daily basis,’ said Andy McGrath, SVP of Marketing at Legacy Recordings, a branch of Sony Music focused on the label’s decades-long song catalog. ‘We’re constantly monitoring actions, reactions, and trends that happen on TikTok.
Tarek Al-Hamdouni, SVP of digital marketing at RCA Records, stated that the label tracks the efficacy of a TikTok song campaign using a multitude of metrics, such as an increase in Spotify streams or variations in Spotify audience numbers.
‘If I see that in the course of a week our audience [on Spotify] went from being primarily 25- to 34-year-old male and a week later the majority is 13-to-24 female, then that’s a pretty easy bridge to connect between those two platforms,’ Al-Hamdouni told Insider.
So in essence, what are all these labels saying about new music promotion in today’s app world? That the TikTok and Spotify apps are the two most important music destinations in the online universe inhabiting the small device in our pocket, of course. Time to link them up!
Naturally, the next step in the process of growing a TikTok musician’s overall following is to translate those numbers into a Spotify marketing strategy.
However, without the right tools, opening the Spotify app from the TikTok app is much easier said than done. The unfortunate trap that musicians and marketers find themselves in when trying to link a TikTok video to open any given screen in the Spotify song, album, or playlist; is the inevitable collision with the dreaded walled garden.
What’s that, you may ask? Well, it’s far less a mystical or romantic phenomenon than it sounds. We’ve all seen it and it’s— ahem— frustrating, to put it mildly.
Imagine this: You, avid TikTok user, click on a Spotify link attached to the TikTok you are currently watching. Success! You’re being taken to the— oh wait, no. You have to… log in? Why are you on the Spotify website on the browser when you already have the app installed? What’s my login information again? It’s been years since I’ve had to log in to my account— because I use the app which I’m always logged into!!. (And on and on and on.)
The walled garden refers to the host app’s efforts to keep you within the confines of its platform, i.e. TikTok wants you to stay on TikTok. Annoying, right? And what’s the cost for a musician? You just lost a stream— or perhaps even worse— a follower.
So what’s the solution here? Us. We are. The URLgenius platform has a patented process for app-to-app linking so that you can seamlessly open the Spotify app from any other app— including TikTok.
And guess what? It’s easy. In fact, we can help you create that Spotify deep link right now in real-time if you follow our the step-by-step guide below.
Let’s say the agency representing Beyoncé wanted to promote her newest single via TikTok advertising. The following are the steps that her team would take to create a URLgenius Spotify deeplink that directly opens to the song in the Spotify app itself, without first stopping at the Spotify web login page within TikTok’s web browser.
URLgenius links help you jump right over the browser login page, and straight into the Spotify app to the right screen— cool, right?
The first thing you’ll need to do is to navigate to the desired Spotify song, album, or artist page and copy the link from the share button. You only need the basic link— you can remove any navigation tags that may have been added as you searched for the Spotify link to make sure they don’t interfere with tracking or opening the Spotify app.
Paste the link into the box provided on the URLgenius home page. When pasting the link, notice the Spotify icon is highlighted— this tells you that URLgenius understands the type of link you just pasted.
Pro Tip: Note the field that lets you customize the end of the link to match your campaign to make it easy to find later (or you can go ahead and use the pre-populated random characters). In this example, we’re customizing it to be ‘beyonce-december’.
Click the “Compose” button, which takes you to the settings page for your Spotify app deep link, where you can copy and place it into your TikTok ad. To test the behavior of the link, you can scan the QR code.
Notice that there are advanced features on the settings page— this is also where you can see clicks and the number of Spotify app-opens. Contact us about how to use advanced features and how to use your artist’s web domain for your links and QR codes.
Doing a multi-channel campaign in coordination with your TikTok ad? Lucky for you, every URLgenius app deep link also has a corresponding QR code.
Create a branded app deep link and custom QR code to use online or offline to promote your Spotify artists, tracks, and playlists. Use them in posters, retail displays, tradeshows, and giveaway promotions. Just click on ‘QR Settings’ to find and download your code.
URLgenius will track scans and clicks separately and you can append tags for tracking in ways that won’t disrupt scanning (including too many tags and appending them the wrong way is a common ‘QR code fail!’).
As of today, TikTok is the number one social media app and Spotify the number one music streaming platform. So then, doesn’t it make sense to build a seamless bridge between the two with URLgenius— the leading app deep linking and QR code platform for marketers and agencies?
Turn your listeners’ TikTok-to-Spotify (app-to-app) journey into a great experience— and you’ll translate that into increased streams, followers, and ultimately $$$.
At URLgenius, we’re here to help! Contact us with questions at email@example.com about TikTok and Spotify marketing deep links and QR codes.
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