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Picture Credits: Last.Fm

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It kind of sucks to be the last, doesn’t it? Well, if you are worrying about being the “last” in promoting your music online then you are in the right place! This article gives you an overview of Last.fm and tells you why you should avoid being the last and include Last.fm in your promotion efforts today. Small hint: so far, Last.fm has had about 75 billion scrobbles! (note: Shortly put, “scrobbling” is when Last.fm automatically sends the name of each song played by audio player). This means that tracks on Last.fm have been played more than 70 billion times!

Last.fm, founded in the United Kingdom in 2002, is one of the most popular streaming and online radio services in the world. Through full-length previews and tailored-to-taste radio stations, the platform empowers the audience to discover new music. For users, Last.fm is a service that offers high interaction by allowing them to update and manage the information on band pages and interact with others in a social-network-like environment.

Why you should start using Last.fm today

Last.fm

A preview of a Last.fm artist page | Picture Credits: Last.fm

If you are an artists or a record label, you can sign up to Last.fm for free here. Once your sign up process has been completed, you will be able to start editing your profile. You can upload pictures, videos, concerts dates and  bio. Once you are finished setting your page up, it is time to start uploading your music. This is one of Last.fm’s powerful features. In fact, thanks through a partnership with e-shops like Amazon and iTunes, Last.fm allows you to sell music on the platform.  Your profile page will feature links through which fans can purchase your music on Amazon or iTunes. If you want to learn more about Lastfm and royalties, the platform has a FAQ page about the topics. To sort your music, you can use the Music Manager. Read more about it here

Like in the case of Spotify, your primary goal for using Lastfm shouldn’t be making money (though you might end up earning some through these services), but promotion. Lastfm alone has some 40 million people who regularly use it. That’s right, 40 MILLION people! While Lastfm has lost some ground to Songkick in terms of being a platform to showcase gigs dates, it is still a great resource you should implement in your promotion strategy. People will be able to listen to your music, see where you are performing next (and come to the concert) and do some free PR for you. Want to now how?? Keep on reading!

Last.fm is a good example of passive promotion. Simply put, you focus on setting up a page and keep it up to date and let the fans do the promotion work for you. This happens because there are several ways Last.fm listeners can use to discover your music:

  • Recommendations: When you are on a list of similar artists, fans of those groups are more likely to listen to your music
  • Tags: On Last.fm, listeners can create their own tags (yep, sometimes this can get a bit…uhm, messy…)
  • Charts: Last.fm features music charts that highlights the most played artists and those who are experiencing a spike in plays
  • “Neighbours” with similar taste: From their user pages, people can find dozen of other users with similar music taste and see what they are listening to
  • Groups: Users can discuss their favourite artists in a group, or comment on any track or video
  • Events: Anyone on Last.fm can add an event, which shows up on the artist’s page. In addition, Last.fm automatically recommends shows to fans in the area and allows users to submit reviews and pictures after gigs
  • Widgets: users can show their music taste to the rest of the Last.fm world with an attention-capture custom widget

 

So, why you don’t want to be dead last and you want to sign up to Last.fm today:

  • it’s a service that offers free sign up and has some 40 million users
  • it allows you to create a page that features your bio, pictures, videos, events and songs (that can also be purchased by listeners thanks to Last.fm’s partnership with services like Amazon and iTunes)
  • it gives power to fans, while at the same time it allows you to benefit from “passive promotion”: fans can share pictures they took at your last gig, can recommend your music to others, create groups about you and, by listening to your songs, having you appear on one of Last.fm’s music charts

 

If you want to know more about last year’s success stories on Last.fm check out this timeline

Are you an artist who is using Last.fm and want to share your tips for success? Here’s your chance, leave a comment! 🙂