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A review and discussion of SubmitHub, PlaylistPush and Musosoup (updated)

I came across a blog post by music producer and recording artist Matti Charlton where he evaluated SubmitHub, PlaylistPush, and Musosoup. His review caught my attention because I am familiar with all of these services and wanted to compare his findings (as artist) to my findings (as curator / promotional channel). I must admit that we share some similar thoughts about these services! This post includes some practical tips to help you make the best use of the opportunities that you may come across.

(tl,dr:) I.m.h.o. the only service really worth the money is SubmitHub, but finding the right tastemakers on SubmitHub will take time (and money).

UPDATE - January 22, 2023: I have added and commented on a response from Musosoup at the end of this post.

SubmitHub basics

There are various types of channels on SubmitHub. In essence, the channels break down into the following categories:

  • Radio/continuous streaming - play your music on e.g. (Internet) Radio stations, YouTube live streams, etc. 
  • Playlist curators - add your music to Spotify playlists
  • Bloggers - a blog post on their website (or a high-traffic website) about your song, and possibly also add your song to a related playlist on a blog. Some blogs also cross-post to various social networks
  • Shout-outs - a public expression (one or two lines) of praise, or acknowledgment about you / your song as part of a performance, recording, broadcast, or just a small post on their website (blog)


No matter the platform, if you want to increase the likelihood that your song will be added to a playlist, then basically you need to find curators who have a large number of playlist listeners and send them music that is so well-suited to the tastes of their audience that its inclusion on their playlist benefits their listenership. 

Easy... or not so easy! This is less of a challenge for artists that already have large volumes of listeners, but what about emerging artists? Your challenge shifts to finding curators who have a nice number of playlist listeners and use their playlists as a vehicle to introduce new/less-known music to their audience. You're looking for curators that use playlists as part of a larger mission to promote new music. Send these 'curators-with-a-mission' music that is so well-suited to the tastes of their audience that its inclusion doesn't harm their listenership. These curators have stacked the songs in their playlists in such a manner that they create slots in between two popular songs for less-known music. There is often a limit to the number of slots they can use to insert less-known music.

Developing regular symbiotic relationships with curators is a key element in finding success on SubmitHub (& Groover), and it’s not easy. You have to dumpster dive the low-quality curators – by either digging through their playlists and responses or by monitoring their playlist transformation and listenership engagement/audience size fluctuations over time, or you can spend a tonne of premium credits on attempting to connect with curators who were either not appropriate for my music (or vice-versa)... and on this journey, you may have moments where you need to admit that your music isn’t completely ready/matured yet.

You need flawless execution if what you’re composing, producing, mixing/mastering and packaging and shipping is anything but revolutionary in its offering. Even if it IS revolutionary, you still need near-flawless execution.

And let me dismiss something from your thoughts right now: It doesn't matter how talented you are or think you are, what are you writing? It’s not revolutionary! But that doesn’t mean you can’t have success, it just has to be impeccable. Mozart your production!

Then track down mature curators who cut their playlists and audience from the same cloth, and offer them a yard of your material.

In a previous post, I shared thoughts on how to tell if a playlist has fake followers, and those tips will come in handy. SubmitHub actually does a good job of increasing transparency about the playlists, but it doesn't hurt to use some of my previous tips to help weed out some of the low-quality offerings... 


A thoughtful write-up, in my opinion, provides some of the best value a blog can provide. I also believe that good blogging improves fans' listening experiences more than being added to a playlist. Because blog posts remain online, the content of blog posts can help drive traffic and improve your search engine rankings. Good blog posts improve your and your music's findability and assist in linking your music to specific themes and keywords.

SubmitHub has a program to encourage bloggers to blog more frequently and to create more original content. This program is called "Really Good Bloggers," and it can be viewed as an endorsement for providing quality content. Bloggers in the "Really Good Bloggers" (RGB) program are reviewed on a regular basis, and their 'RGB' status can be revoked if their posts no longer meet SubmitHub's quality criteria. However, I do see a number of bloggers with the RGB status that write a minimal amount of content in their blog posts. SubmitHub enables you to see what a blogger has been posting, and this makes it easier for you to understand if this blogger can potentially give you value for your money. In other words: Do You Homework!

Bloggers require information and background to get started. Don't just send a song with only one or two lines about it! Make it easier for the blogger to create more value by sharing your personal story behind the song, as well as the lyrics. Good write-ups can only be created if the writer has a starting point to work with. If the writer must first spend time (maximum 2-5 minutes) searching the internet for lyrics, background about the song, and reading other posts to help get a storyline, the chances of the submission being accepted are rapidly diminishing (or you may end up with a short post with hardly any story in to)!

A number of bloggers also curate playlists and promote them on their websites and blogs. These playlists may not always have a large number of listeners, but that doesn't mean they're valueless. Spotify uses the content of quality playlists to help recommend music to subscribers. Spotify collects a lot of information about its subscribers and the music they listen to. This information is used to recommend music. Although new music on Spotify may have a variety of genre tags, it is the playlist additions that help Spotify algorithms match the song with potential new listeners. When recommending music, other factors such as the popularity of a track are taken into account. A playlist with 200 listeners for music that can be classified as niche can be as equally powerful as a playlist with 20.000 listeners for mainstream music.

For all practical purposes, Christian music is definitely seen as a niche compared to mainstream music.

Developing regular symbiotic relationships with bloggers is a key element in finding success on SubmitHub, and that too is not easy. You may have to read through a number of the posts they wrote for other music, but SubmitHub actually makes this easier for you. Visit the SubmitHub profile of the blogger and you will see a section containing recently shared songs. Click on any of these songs to see links to the locations where the song has been shared. It is very easy to open the link and see the kind of write-up this blogger has created.  

It should only take a few minutes for you to get a feeling about the intent and potential added value of this blogger for you.

Here is a link to my profile on

About third-party tools used to determine website traffic

This is a bit technical, but in case you are interested: 

There are a number of free sites on the internet that you can use to get a feeling about the number of visitors that a website is getting. BUT, there are a number of cases where these tools cannot properly determine the number of visitors.
A content delivery network (CDN) is a system that helps to improve the speed and reliability of a website by delivering content to users from servers that are located close to them. This is done by sending the user's request for content to the nearest CDN server, which then retrieves the content from the origin server and delivers it to the user. CDNs are commonly used to deliver a wide range of content, such as images, videos, and other large files, and are particularly useful for websites with a lot of traffic from users in different parts of the world. However, some free web tools may not be able to accurately track traffic on websites that use CDNs because of the way that CDN servers cache content.

Quite a few sites (like use a CDN network and that makes it even more challenging for external tools to predict the traffic. 

Playlist Push

Personally, I believe you should avoid using Playlist Push! Playlist Push is too anonymous and charges you to keep the Wizard of Oz hidden behind the curtain. 

SubmitHub is actually already home to many of the (serious) curators on Playlist Push. Playlist Push has an odd incentive scheme for its curators that actually reduces the service's added value for artists. Playlist Push pays curators more to accept a song than to decline one. With that in mind, what do you believe will happen? Not only is that essentially 'payola' (which is against the law), but it taints the relationship-building process... a relationship that requires a more equitable benefit based on the actual VALUE of the "goods" exchanged - that is, playlist placement benefits their audience while also benefiting artist development and income. Matti compares this to 'bribing curators like a mafia'. 

The Playlist Push API has been known to cause a few challenges with Spotify (e.g. potential security issues causing your password to be reset, banning of a playlist, etc.). I personally do not like connecting any API to my Spotify account. I closely manage and guard my Spotify account, and (for me) connecting an API is like giving the API owner a blank cheque. If any mistake is made by the API, I get blamed and even risk sanctions. Since you must connect your Spotify with the Playlist Push API, using Playlist Push is no option for me. 


(For the record - LEGAL DISCLAIMER - this is a personal opinion.)

Musosoup's mission is to generate PR/Marketing opportunities... and I believe these opportunities are not for you as a musician, but for the teams who will be notified that you might be interested in procuring a service...

An artist first submits their music to Musosoup, and Musosoup notifies potential 'influencers'. Artists will then be contacted with quotes for a variety of so-called 'relevant' offerings. As an artist, you must now sift through all of the offerings to determine if there is any potential value.

After being interviewed by the founder, I joined Musosoup as a service provider. The founders' primary goal was to generate revenue. All throughout the interviews, the founder was constantly emphasizing the moneymaking opportunities he would be generating for me. As a provider, I pay a percentage, and the artist pay to use the platform. It didn't take me long to realize how artists were being used as cash cows. I had submitted a few genuine offers to artists in the beginning (no results, I guess I was too honest about what I can do), but my gut feeling was telling me that the whole concept was wrong. I stopped making offers and waited a couple of months until I had time to look again at this 'opportunity'. Everything I saw was reinforcing my earlier gut feeling, so I closed my account.

I believe Musosoup is a cesspool of new "music blogs" and "influencers" with dubious audience sizes and playlist likes, who are gold rushing to gain curatorship with this self-aggrandizing organization.

I personally believe that Musosoup doesn't care about your music; they just generate "sales opportunities" with nothing resembling a financially viable investment, so forget about ROI. They almost always seem to attach strings to the "free alternatives" they offer you, expecting you to leverage your audience to benefit them far more than you.

In my opinion, the free options lack any sense of real value, i.e. "you'll be added to a playlist" (which I believe is an empty promise because there is no guarantee of where you'll be added or what kind of results you can expect).

Then there are the paid options, which I believe are overpriced and people seem to completely avoid answering any questions to help you understand if it is worth it to spend $30 on a blog post. Just ask people to send a snapshot of their weekly traffic and then see what they say! This increases my opinion that the offerings on Musosoup are overpriced hot-air. Anyone with technical knowledge about internet infrastructure knows how easy it is to create a snapshot of server traffic, and that is why I don't understand why people would dodge such a question... and that reinforces my opinion that people do this when they have something to hide.

Anyone who has worked with me before will understand that I do not want to be associated with a service that I believe is not generating true value. My opinion is that everyone should avoid  Musosoup

Conclusion: Submithub

I believe that SubmitHub is possibly the only place where you can really reach the right tastemakers' ears in order to bring your song to the right audience, but finding those tastemakers will take time and effort.

SubmitHub makes it simple to see how much value a tastemaker provides, so use those insights before you spend your money on low-quality curators and bloggers.

UPDATE: Reply by Musosoup

On January 22nd, Musosoup responded to this article via Twitter. Please find below the replies that Musosoup posted: Keep in mind that working with a Publicists is based on a legal agreement. You not only have agreed on WHAT will be targeted and HOW..., and there is also full transparency! Big savings if it is clear what you are getting, and there is full transparency Yes, this is a fair wage True, and I believe it is very normal that these bloggers / playlist owners can tell you up front where your track will be added, what kind of performance this playlist has, and how this playlist will support the artist' promotional campaign. As soon as a blogger / playlister is avoiding answering questions, you must ask yourself what it is you are really getting and even consider NOT having your music placed on such playlists! Placement on some playlists (or even the wrong playlists) may even harm your own campaign! E.g. if the playlist is only getting fake streams, or if your music is placed on a playlist with unrelated (sub-)genres.

In closing

I feel everyone has the right to place their opinion next to mine, and I thank Chris for doing so. But as you re-read the comments I made about Musosoup, ask yourself if Chris effectively addressed the real concerns that I raised. My issue is about the transparency needed to help you understand what potential value you are receiving.

In my opinion, this concern has NOT been answered! The Musosoup tool itself is not the discussion here. The founder may have had a different intent than what I understood during the interview.  

How is Musosoup ensuring that you are working with legitimate "music blogs" and "influencers" with clear audience sizes and real playlist likes, people who are offering true value? Do they have some kind of kind of audit/review mechanism in place? If they do, how does that give you more certainty? With all of today's technology it is so easy to get independent insights about a playlist/platform/service. Insights that, if used in a manner that is expected from a Guardian, will keep service providers honest and sharp, and raise the value of services provided to you. 

Why is the level of transparency that exists for another service I mentioned in my review, not so easy via Musosoup? 

Chris writes: "We are an alternative to hiring a publicist, yes there can be extra costs involved but you as an artist, manager, label or publicist are fully in control." If you were hiring a publicist directly, what kind of checks and quality control mechanisms would you have in place?

Musosoup places itself between you and the parties that are providing services. By doing so, they also need to have these checks and quality control mechanisms in place and monitor the quality of services provided! 

In my opinion, this level of quality control is lacking in Musoup, nor are they helping you to get that clarity from the service providers that use their platform. 

I truly hope that this review will help Musosoup to make the changes needed to (hopefully someday soon) give me a reason to revisit my opinion of the service. 


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