The power that fans on social media platforms like TikTok have to turn viral tracks into global hits has been proven time and time again.

Now, Believe-owned DIY digital music distributor TuneCore says that it wants to “facilitate” that discovery and virality for independent artists.

The company has introduced a new service for artists to distribute their music directly into the music libraries of social media platforms including TikTok, YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, and Reels.

Dubbed ‘Social Platforms’, TuneCore says that its new service is “a first of its kind,”  whereby artists can distribute their music to social media networks “as a pre-step” to releasing music to streaming and download platforms.

There’s no upfront fee for the new service, but TuneCore will, however, participate in what it calls a “small share of revenues” generated by the tracks on the platforms. MBW understands that artists get to keep 80% of revenues, which means that TuneCore takes a 20% cut.

Once songs gain traction, according to TuneCore, artists can then distribute their music through its platform – where the company’s upload fees apply – to over 150 stores and streaming platforms worldwide.

In a media statement announcing the news, TuneCore notes that “When an artist posts a video of a new song directly on their social channels, they may get views and followers, but their music is not easily accessible for other creators to use in their posts and the artist does not generate revenue”.

By distributing their tracks through Social Platforms, and with those tracks being made available in the social platform’s libraries, TuneCore says that there will be more “virality opportunities” for their music, in addition to “monetizing their art immediately”.

TuneCore cites artist Charlotte Sands as a case study of how a viral track can lead to broader success. According to TuneCore, in November of 2020, Sands posted a demo of her song Dress, which went viral on TikTok.

Sands then released the song a few days later, and Dress was featured on multiple Spotify playlists including New Music Fridays, Teen Beats, New in Pop, Fresh Finds Pop, and she was the cover artist for that week’s Fresh Finds playlist.

Currently Sands has over 1 million monthly listeners on Spotify, with Dress hitting 11 million streams. The original video on TikTok has 1.3 million plays.

Sands is signed to TuneCore’s parent company Believe and released a new EP earlier this fall. The rest of this year sees her on tour as the opening act for Yungblud. “All of this happened in less than one year and all because she posted a demo on TikTok,” says TuneCore.

“I am looking forward to the day when we will be able to announce the first DIY indie creator has become a No.1 charting artist.”

Denis Ladegaillerie, Believe

Speaking to MBW, Denis Ladegaillerie, CEO of Believe, said:  “Innovation on behalf of artists is what drives Believe and TuneCore, as we shape the future of music on a global level.

“With this offering of distribution directly into the music libraries of social media platforms, we are providing a solution for the millions of new music creators around the world to facilitate discovery and virality of their creations at no upfront cost.

“I am looking forward to the day when we will be able to announce the first DIY indie creator has become a No.1 charting artist.”

“TuneCore is not only enabling indie artists to connect with fans, and viral moments, we’re helping them to monetize those interactions.”

Andreea Gleeson, TuneCore

Andreea Gleeson, Chief Executive Officer, TuneCore, added: “In the past few years, social media platforms like YouTube, TikTok, Instagram and Facebook have become the first stage for music discovery, providing a new way for music creators to start building audiences and accelerate discovery and virality.

“With the launch of distribution to Social Platforms, TuneCore is offering a one-stop solution for artists to release and monetize their music on key social media platforms with no-upfront fee to provide an easily accessible launchpad for creators.”

“With social media, there are no gatekeepers, the fans decide what they like and what goes viral. As fan behavior and music discovery changes, artists need to pivot as well.

“TuneCore is not only enabling indie artists to connect with fans, and viral moments, we’re helping them to monetize those interactions.”

 Music Business Worldwide

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