SoundCloud is probably the best SaaS (Software as a Service) platform available to musicians to date. It is easy to use and widely accepted by music creators and music lovers alike.
But with every good thing comes an annoying a$$hole though.
At one point on this blog, I posted the “song submission” widget in the sidebar. It generated no interest, so I removed it. No big deal, it just did not seem that artists were actively sharing their songs that way.
If music bloggers were smarter, they would demand songs be sent to them via SoundCloud. I’m digressing though.
Recently, I had noticed a weird trend in my email alerts from SoundCloud. I was magically receiving a lot of followers when I was barely using the service.
It was not until I noticed the same individual was following me multiple times that I decided to investigate.
Now the above image is hard to see, but it shows the dubious activity that triggered me to look into my recent popularity.
I do not know who “Fista Cuffs” is, but I must admit I was intrigued. I did not expect anything worthwhile, but I expected to at least get a good chuckle at his or her expense.
Then I noticed “Fista Cuffs” sent me a private track. Curious. What did I do to deserve such a treat?
Wait. I am not special. This was sent to 10872 people. What are the odds that this person actually knows even 1% of these people?
My guess is 10873 to 1.
Of course, I realized what this was. It reminds me of the #TEAMFOLLOWBACK movement on Twitter. I was being conjoled into boosting this person’s social stats on a platform that wants to encourage the sharing of music, not the spamming of content.
I am not going for that. Never have; never will.
It was not until I decided to work on this blog post that I take the time to actually review the private track I was sent.
Turns out “Fista Cuffs” is no longer on SoundCloud. Kudos SoundCloud!
Moral to the Story
Being an annoying a$$hole will not get you far in life. You might achieve some minor gains, but long-term you will lose. If you are truly trying to build a music career, take your time and build relationships the old-fashioned way. “Hi. My name is Lars Ulrich and I am the drummer in a band called Metallica. I love music. How about you?”
In order to get to the 1000 true fans, there are no magic tricks available. It takes time, hard work and dedication.
Numbers do not matter, if they are not actionable. If you cannot get 10% of 100 to do your bidding, what is the point? An email list is only as strong as the open rate.
You cannot game your way into being successful. It is not good to speak in definitives, so here is an exception. You can game towards success, but it is not likely you will have a stress-free life and/or have many real friends in the process. Keep that in mind.
Stop chasing numbers and stick to chasing your dreams. Who really fantasizes about having 30,000 Twitter followers or 5000 SoundCloud listens? If you do, leave me a note in the comments. I want to talk to you.