To all current and future Tunedly users:
First off, Happy New Year, well, happy new decade for that matter! I want to quickly outline some changes we are planning that may affect you in 2020.
1. Changes To Song Plugging With Tunedly
The first important thing to note is that we no longer provide feedback when we reject non-Tunedly produced submissions. Here is why:
- Cutting this out allows us to review twice as many songs every week. Right around October 2019, we were nearly five weeks behind on reviewing submissions. Now, we're pretty much on target reviewing most submissions within two weeks.
- Another major reason is the following: We base our decision about accepting or rejecting songs according to our needs for our catalog. Sometimes, we may reject songs that are perfectly fine, but we either already signed a similar song or don't feel like it's a good fit for our catalog and the opportunities we chase. In other words, just because we decline your song, doesn't mean your song isn't suitable for placements. Often times, it just means it's not for us.
- Most songwriters who submit songs for plugging don't care about feedback: This one stings a little, to be honest, but most songwriters really don't care based on our experience. Let me explain - all too often, when we rejected a song and gave detailed feedback on the reasons why, seven out of 10 songwriters will leave it at that and don't bother replying or fixing the issue. two out of 10 songwriters will get back in a rude manner, disagreeing with the assessment (or even becoming abusive in their email/phone manners). One out of 10 songwriters will actually take the feedback seriously and either improve the song or incorporate the feedback into new songs. Long story short, it simply wasn't worth the effort.
Look, we expect you to only pitch songs of professional recording quality. If you produced your song with us (at least with a small band production), you know the recording quality is acceptable. If you recorded your song elsewhere and have doubts about the quality, it probably isn't good enough. If you can't play your song in the same playlist with current Billboard Top 30 hits without noticing a difference in production quality, then, chances are, the production quality isn't there. In that case, don't pitch it in the first place. There is a high chance that it will be rejected.
However, if the production quality is of a professional standard and your song still gets rejected, it is most likely because that song is simply not for us at the moment. With that said, make sure that all the standard rules apply such as:
- Is your song under 4 minutes long?
- Is your intro under 10 seconds long?
- Do you get to the chorus within 45 seconds?
- Is your syllable count right?
- Is your storyline easy to follow?
Again, if your production quality is there and you can answer "yes" to all of these questions, the reason why we reject your song is because it's simply not a good fit for our catalog at the time. If you have doubts about production quality or answer "no" to any of the above questions, well, then it should be pretty clear why we rejected your song.
Oh, I came to think of one more reason: Incomplete submissions! All too often, a file is amiss, contact details are wrong or missing, the song is already signed to another publisher, etc. Those are all obvious reasons for not getting a publishing contract offered. But, again, we don't have to tell you. You already know it!
2. Changes To How We Plug Songs
Over the past 12 months, we were mainly focused on growing our catalog instead of being aggressive about pitching our catalog. It doesn't make much sense for a publisher to pitch a catalog that contains less than 200 songs. We have now surpassed that threshold and will be more intentional in our pitching efforts going forward.
Our song pluggers have quotas to meet every month and we will share our results with you on social media and through email on a monthly basis. Having said that, don't get too discouraged if you read about song placements of others but yours are not yet picked. Rest assured, if one of your songs is in our catalog, we pitch it as hard as anyone else's. It is just that the right opportunity has simply not come around for your song to get placed as yet.
Also, keep in mind the number I mentioned earlier - we have 200+ songs in our catalog, so if we place 1-5 songs per month, that's a 0.5% - 2.5% chance for your particular song to get picked. The only way to increase your odds is by getting more songs into the catalog. I said it many times and will repeat it often: Being successful as a songwriter is and always will be a numbers game!
Did you know? On average, it takes a song five years from creation to successful major placement. Did you also know? 80% of songs signed to a publishing contract never actually get placed. How do you beat those odds? With patience and more quality songs!
Professional songwriters, and those who strive to become professional, write 100s of songs every year and professionally record and produce at least 2-5 every month. I'm not saying that this is what you have to do as well. If you write songs mainly as a hobby and generating income from your songs is more of "nice to have" instead of a "must-have," there is no need to match the above numbers. However, if becoming a professional songwriter is your ultimate goal, it definitely makes sense to write a lot of songs and record more of them professionally.
3. Some Important Stats
This isn't really a point of change but just a few stats I would like to share with you. Last year, we received 1,345 song-plugging submissions. We signed 98 of those songs to our catalog. Of those, 53 are Pop songs, 27 are Country songs, 7 are Rock songs, 3 are R&B songs, 3 are Christian/Gospel songs, 3 are Christmas/Holiday songs, and 2 are Hip-Hop/Rap songs.
Until now, our song screeners did not have access to our production platform, which means, they did not know which songs were produced with Tunedly and which songs were produced elsewhere. Yet, of the 98 songs we signed, 63 were produced with Tunedly (64%) and only 35 were produced elsewhere (36%).
My point is that if you are still working with someone else or home producing your music, thinking that is enough in today's music industry, think again! Also, going forward, we will separate Tunedly-produced songs from songs produced elsewhere. We want to provide more feedback than a simple yes/no to those who produce their music with us. As a result, if you produced your song with us and pitch it for a publishing contract, we will explain why we offered or didn't offer you a publishing contract. If you pitch a song you produced elsewhere, we will only provide you a yes/no decision without further explanations.
Introducing Tunedly Dollars
Earlier this month, we introduced Tunedly Dollars (T$) with a pretty sweet promotion. T$ are credits in your Tunedly account. Right now, you can purchase T$ with US$ currency at a 1:1 rate. In the next month, we will add the opportunities to earn free T$ throughout the year by completing missions for Tunedly. Keep an eye out for the announcement, as this can significantly reduce your cost to produce music in the future. Later this year, we will also add the ability for you to sell T$ to other members, at any rate you agree on, and we will add partner businesses that will accept T$ to buy their products and services.
Those are the main changes for 2020 I thought you would need to be aware of. The entire Tunedly team wishes you a successful year! Chris Erhardt is the co-founder & CEO of Tunedly – the site you're on right now. ;) Tunedly connects songwriters and music creators to some of the world’s most talented session musicians, to create professional-sounding music, as well as helping you gain exposure through music publishing opportunities. He is a songwriter and producer, as well as a speaker at music events and tech conferences. « return to blog