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Is Radio Airplay Still Worth It?

Radio Airplay

Jango is a free internet radio platform similar to Pandora. Feed it an artist name and it generates a playlist of related songs. Radio Airplay injects songs from emerging artists into those playlists.

I started using Radio Airplay a.k.a. Jango Airplay when it launched in March of 2009. Over the past seven years, my songs have racked up 340,246 plays at a cost of about two cents per play. Some of that money came out of my own pocket, but most of it was generated by affiliate links in my four articles on Jango. The last one dates back to November of 2011, so we’re long overdue for an update!

Rather than directing you back to years-old articles, I’ve written this post as a standalone review. If you believe that paying for airplay is in all cases payola and therefore evil, start with Is Jango Payola? Otherwise there’s no need to refer back to my earlier posts.

How much does Radio Airplay cost?

Subscribing to any monthly package makes you eligible for up to 1000 additional free plays per week, for each of your songs that get at least 100 plays.

Radio Airplay Packages

The $30 per month for 1000 plays package is a no-brainer for me. The $10 package doesn’t provide enough credits to consistently earn free plays, and $100 is too big a leap for my budget.

The number of free plays you receive is based on your song’s weekly PopScore, which is determined by how listeners interact with it (likes/dislikes, etc). Most weeks I earned 100 free plays, bringing me up to 1400 or 1500 plays per month.

Radio Airplay NeuCoin Tip

You can also earn plays through an artist tipping feature integrated with NeuCoin, a virtual currency. Jango Radio listeners start with 25 NeuCoin for tipping emerging artists, and earn more by listening daily. Each tip puts 5 NeuCoin in your account. You can exchage 1000 NeuCoin for 500 plays. I’ve accumulated 180 NeuCoin since the feature went live early this year, so I won’t be cashing out any time soon.

How does Radio Airplay work?

When your song comes up in the playlist, your “promo unit” appears on the listener’s screen. They can ignore it, close it, vote on the song, or perform other actions depending on the configuration you select.

Lars Promo Unit
If they give your song a thumbs up, they “become a fan” and can opt to share their email address and/or leave a comment.

Radio Airplay Share

You can see recent listens, plays, and fans on your dashboard. Listeners can limit the ads they hear to one per day by connecting their Facebook account. When they do, a link to their Facebook profile appears on our dashboard. You can even click through and send them a friend request. It’s true – Jango listeners are real people!

Radio Airplay Fans

You can also message fans through Radio Airplay’s internal messaging system, individually or all at once. Don’t waste your time though. A typical message to my 14K fans nets only 3-4 thoughtful replies. Open rates aren’t provided, but clearly the vast majority of listeners don’t see their messages.

Targeting and Reporting

How your songs perform, which determines your PopScore, is largely based on who you target. You can create unique sets of targets for each song. Maybe one does well with fans of Death Cab for Cutie while another resonates with fans of Radiohead. This is referred to as Song-Level Artist Targeting, and it’s well worth taking the time to get right.

Fortunately Radio Airplay provides a wonderful tool for optimizing your artist targeting: the Fan Overlap Report, which shows you what artists your fans like, on a per-song basis.

Fan Overlap Report

Just click on a suggested target to add them to your targeting.

I’d love to see a toggle switch to optimize targets dynamically based on recent song performance. Maybe you’d start by picking three artists you sound like, and let the algorithm work from there. Seems like it would be doable!

There are two categories of targeting: Standard and Premium.

Standard targeting includes Artist Targeting and basic Geographic Targeting (plays are focused on the areas you select). It costs one credit per play.

Premium targeting adds Demographic Targeting (by age and gender), and strict Geographic Targeting (plays are limited to only the areas you select). It costs two credits per play.

Geographic and Demographic reports can help to refine your premium targeting. Personally, I don’t think it’s worth paying double for. Most of my plays are in the US, which is good enough for me.

My Radio Airplay results

I recycled affiliate income into plays for a couple years after my previous article, then took a two and a half year break, dividing my results neatly into then and now.

Radio Airplay results

As you can see, the percentage of new fans, comments, and shared email addresses dropped by roughly half. My guess is that active listeners moved on to subscription services like Spotify, leaving a higher percentage of passive “lean-back” listeners.

Ultimately though, do those metrics even matter? The way I see it, the value of the service is in the plays.

Is your music getting played? Yes. To real people? Yes. Are they actually listening? Who knows!

The value of a Jango email subscriber

My emphasis on plays is a break from the past, where I previously measured the success of my campaigns by the number of email addresses collected. Why the change of heart?

Of the 1291 email addresses shared with me over the past 7 years, only 396 remain on my list. To be fair, I recently purged my list of inactive emails, after sending out two warnings to confirm or be removed.

To gauge the level of engagement of the remaining 396, I sent out an email, and followed up with a reminder email, asking them to complete a three-question survey. Only 9 responded, and their answers aren’t promising:

Jango Email Survey

You might conclude that Jango plays don’t lead to sales, but you’d be wrong! Plenty of Jango listeners have purchased my music over the years, as I’ve found out about through social media, website surveys, and fan email.

Clearly that reality isn’t reflected in my current Jango email subscriber base, which is why I no longer measure my success by email shares. Now it’s all about the plays.

Is Radio Airplay worth it?

I guess it’s time to answer the question: Yes, it’s worth it.

At the very least, a few thousand plays will get you an accurate Fan Overlap Report. Knowing what artists your fans listen to is useful in any promotional context.

Beyond that, it depends what your goals are, and what else you’re doing to promote your music. You’re certainly not going to make your money back in sales, so Radio Airplay can’t function as the sole piece of the puzzle.

For me, it’s hard to justify the expense when I’m getting thousands of free plays every month, plus demographic reporting and a growing array of artist tools, on Pandora (submit your music here).

If you’re focused on SoundCloud, you might be better off with (my review here). The reporting isn’t as robust, but the plays perform double-duty by boosting your SoundCloud play count.

I doubt there’s much if any overlap between audiences, so why not try both? One listener pool may prove to be more receptive than the other.

You can get 100 free spins on Radio Airplay and support the site using my affiliate link!

Radio Airplay Free Plays

Have you tried Radio Airplay? Share your thoughts and results in the comments below!

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  • Reply
    Darryl Girard
    July 6, 2016 at 8:07 am

    Thank you for another fantastic blog/review! I too have been on Radio Airplay since 2009. Would love to hear your thoughts on the organic plays. Also, am curious if you have any insight about situations like mine where I upload songs in various genres. Thanks!

    • Reply
      Brian Hazard
      July 6, 2016 at 1:30 pm

      With song-level targeting, it shouldn’t matter if every song is in a different genre! Even PopScore is on a per-song basis, so it’s just a matter of optimizing for each individually.

      As for organic (unpaid) plays, that’s largely been replaced with the free plays for high PopScore songs. There are still ways to get organic plays though. For example, a top PopScore band could appear in Jango Radio Independent Stations and Hot genre-specific stations, or even become part of a regular genre or artist seeded station playlist. Those plays will also earn royalties collectable through SoundExchange.

  • Reply
    Erin Rizzo
    July 11, 2016 at 3:23 pm

    Hey Brian! Erin R. from here. We really appreciate your membership since 2009 and honest evaluations of our artist promotional platform throughout the years. It’s personally always a pleasure corresponding with you. Any further questions that your readers may have please send them our way. They can reach out to us directly anytime. Our support team is available through live chat, phone, and 24/7 email. Visit: for all methods of contact.

    • Reply
      Brian Hazard
      July 19, 2016 at 7:54 pm

      Thanks Erin! Thanks for always being so helpful and accessible!

  • Reply
    Mark Swanson
    July 17, 2016 at 2:04 pm

    Nice write up, Brian. I discovered Jango through your previous articles and have been using it sparingly for a few months. Overall, I like it.

    If you’re using Jango in hopes of converting listeners into paying customers, you’ll be disappointed. But that’s a reflection of overall purchasing trends in music, not in Jango’s platform.

    If you’re just using it to get your music in someone’s ears, (who could legitimately become a fan), it’s not a bad way to go. I’ve definitely turned a few people on to my music through Jango that have even popped up in my SoundCloud listeners (which is pretty awesome), Facebook shares and Twitter followers. Granted, its only a few, but each one is a great feeling.

    My only real complaint is that for the type of music I’m writing, the listening audience on Jango is very small. Even after maxing out the target artists at 30, I’ve gotten to a point where I recognize most people’s profile pictures when I look to see who’s heard my music. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, because a one-off play may not get someone’s attention, but if that same person is hearing multiple songs of mine several times a week, it may eventually resonate with them.

    I never accumulated enough weekly plays on a song to qualify for a Pop Score, because I promote lots of songs at once, so no individual songs were ever hitting 100 plays per week. But last week I changed my strategy and promoted one single song. I just logged into Jango after reading this article and was pumped to see that I got a Pop Score of 98 (and 250 free plays). That kind of got me hooked on Jango again.

    I’m sitting at 135 NeuCoin tips. The 1,000 coin threshold should be way lower. Something closer to 250 NeuCoins before you can redeem them seems more appropriate. I assume I’ll have moved on from Jango before I ever get 1,000 coins.

    Oh yeah, as you stated, the messaging system for communicating with fans is basically worthless. I agree that most people you communicate with never realize they have a message and that’s a huge flaw in the system.

    • Reply
      Brian Hazard
      July 19, 2016 at 7:57 pm

      Thank you Mark! This is really, really helpful.

      It’s particularly great to know that Jango listeners are making the leap to your other profiles, SoundCloud in particular.

      Kudos on your 98 PopScore! I’m lucky to break 90.

      Too bad we can’t pool our NeuCoin. I’d tip all of mine to you if I could.

  • Reply
    Walt Collins
    October 7, 2016 at 2:01 am

    Hi Brian! I’m in the process of getting started with Radio Airplay and your post is the reason why. Thanks for sharing your valuable experiences! In fact, I love your whole idea of “passive promotion” and I’ve been reading some of your other posts here looking for new efficient ways to promote my own (indie electronic) music.

    Specifically regarding Radio Airplay, I signed up a few weeks ago for 6 months on their 1000 credit-per-month package. However, I’ve had trouble actually receiving enough plays from the credits I’ve allocated. I’m getting fewer than 5 plays per day on average across all my songs, even with 1000+ credits allocated (currently split between 4 songs). I’m using Standard targeting, and I’ve selected 30 popular electronic artists who seem relevant to these songs.

    In my correspondence with the Radio Airplay support folks, they told me the only way to increase plays is to use “Warp Speed”. My campaign is already on the 2nd fastest speed setting, “Fastest”. However, I’m concerned that it may use up all my credits at once (which they confirmed might happen).

    Needless to say, if I only get a few dozen plays per week I’m not going to be getting anywhere near the PopScore bonus credits. Therefore, I’m still considering possibly using Warp Speed”.

    Do you have any experience with the “Warp Speed” setting? Do you think you’d recommend it?


    • Reply
      Brian Hazard
      October 8, 2016 at 9:15 am

      Hey Walt!

      I just checked my campaign settings, and I’ve always had it on Warp Speed. I’ve got about 30 artist targets and 11 geographic targets.

      I recommend taking the plunge. Full speed ahead sir! I doubt you’ll use up all your credits in one fell swoop, but let us know!

  • Reply
    October 16, 2016 at 10:59 pm

    I’ve been doing Warp Speed for 10 days now, and it’s a bit faster, but not to the point of using up all my credits. It seems that the specific artists chosen really have a huge impact on the number of plays you get. Through some trial and error I’ve been able to find a few artists that get me more plays. Now it’s a matter of getting the best ratio of plays to LIKES, so I’m not just spending credits on bands that aren’t similar enough to make me new fans.
    It’s really hard getting started in music promotion! I talked about this recently on my own music blog (and gave you a shout out there, Brian!)

    • Reply
      Brian Hazard
      October 22, 2016 at 5:00 pm

      I guess it takes a lot of trial and error to optimize your campaigns before you can truly “set it and forget it” – but it sounds like you’re there! Thanks for the shoutout!

      • Reply
        A. Grattan
        November 10, 2016 at 8:52 pm

        I released one song, about 6 weeks ago, to “test the waters” and learn the ropes. I have 13 targeted artists on Radio Airplay and my Play Speed is set to “Normal” wit the Gold account level. For the past 2 weeks I have been averaging just over 30 plays per day. Whether that’s great or not is a matter of opinion. My point is Warp Speed doesn’t seem to be the requirement for airplay.

        As an aside, I find there is, not surprisingly, a considerable amount to learn about this part of the business.

        Also, thanks for your blogs. Very informative.k

        • Reply
          Brian Hazard
          November 11, 2016 at 3:41 pm

          Good to know! I haven’t been messing with it lately, but maybe once I’ve got something new to promote, I’ll give it a shot.

  • Reply
    October 22, 2016 at 10:16 pm

    I think I’ve decided that will be part of my longer term music promotion strategy. It’ll still take quite a bit of tweaking, but it seems like it may be worthwhile.

    Brian – what’s your favorite promotion service that’s not these guys? I’m guessing maybe submithub? Or is there something else I may have missed?

  • Reply
    Eu Jin
    November 23, 2016 at 10:52 pm

    Am experiencing some misleading concerns about

    I signed up for their free trial and was impressed with their targeting features. I paid $30 to purchase more credits after my free credits ran out. If you are not familiar, their platform allows paying customers/musicians like myself to target radio stations identified by well known artists on

    For example, there is a Meghan Trainor station, Rihanna Station and etc. Each artist station plays a playlist of the artist’s respective songs including other artist similar to the genre. claims that they will inject paying customer’s song into the playlists of the artists you are targeting (e.g. Meghan Trainor, Rihanna and etc.). Their platform allows paying customers like myself to list any artist I’d like to target. They also provide stats on real users & facebook profiles who have listened to your song based on your targeted list of well known artists. This indeed sounded genius.

    The problem became clear when I visited I visited the stations that I was targeting including some that I was not. I played the entire playlist of several well known artists just to see if Radioplay was indeed promising what they were intending.

    To my surprise and disbelief, I did not hear any unknown independent artist on any of the well known artists’ playlist (Meghan Trainor, Rihanna and etc). I performed a Google search on each artist on the playlist and they were all signed to Major Record Labels. None were independent and unknown like myself. I tested the same with other well known artist playlist with similar results.

    This raised my suspicion that maybe misleading musicians and artists like myself. I wrote to their customer service requesting a clarification about this matter several a week ago and have still not received a response.

    So I’m taking my queries here to hopefully connect with other Radioplay users who may have experience the same. Look forward to hearing your thoughts on this.

    • Reply
      Alan Grattan
      November 24, 2016 at 5:59 am

      Two months ago I uploaded a single song to “test the waters”, as this is all new to me.

      I have monitored Radio Airplay and dabbled with settings in an effort to see what works best. During the 2 months Radio Airplay shows 1500 users having listened to my song. A small percentage of those have even identified as “Fans”.

      An area that is still somewhat grey to me is, if I understand it correctly, that the listeners reported by Radio Airplay are “paid listeners”. I know that when I have listened to my song through Jango, both logged in and not logged in, I never appear as a listener.

      I hope this helps.

  • Reply
    Eu Jin
    November 24, 2016 at 7:56 am

    Hi Alan, thanks for your comment. The users are real and am assuming they did listen to the artist stations that you targeted. However, there is no guarantee that they actually heard your song on any of their playlists.

    Try going to and play some of the artist stations that you targeted. Do you hear your song there or songs belonging to other unknown indie artists? Don’t think so.

    That’s where the concern is. It’s been close to a week since I wrote to for a clarification and request to show me an example of a playlist containing indie-artists like ourselves.

    I’ve yet to receive a response.

    • Reply
      Alan Grattan
      November 24, 2016 at 8:18 am

      Yes, I have heard my song on, at least one, targeted artist station.

      I just did a test. To be very specific, on the John Prine radio station in Jango Mark Rosal’s song “Yes I Did” just played.

      When I review Listeners in Radio Airplay, it identifies the station that the listener heard my song on.

      Where did you publish your song so that Jango would be able to pick it up (e.g. CDBaby)?

  • Reply
    Eu Jin
    November 24, 2016 at 8:55 am

    That’s strange. I just went to John Prine’s radio station and fast forward by clicking next on every song. Every song seems to be someone well known or at least signed to a major record label. I was hoping to come across your song but didn’t. Also no signs of any unknown indie-artists.

    Were you logged in or logged out when you heard your song?

    Answering your question, I published our song via Tunecore.

    • Reply
      Alan Grattan
      November 24, 2016 at 9:04 am

      I was logged in at the time. I had a screen shot but couldn’t include it in my response :(.

      I notice that in Jango your name does not come up as a selection under “Artist Radio” (assuming that it appears the same as in the blog) where as my name will appear as does Mark Rosal’s name (BTW … prior to today I had never heard of Mark).

  • Reply
    Alan Grattan
    November 24, 2016 at 9:07 am

    P.S. I thought your logged in question was in reference to hearing Mark’s song.

    With regards to my song I think I’ve been both logged in and not logged in.

  • Reply
    Eu Jin
    November 24, 2016 at 9:11 am

    Will try logging into Jango to see if I experience the same results. It’s late here so will try doing it tomorrow and will update. Meanwhile, you should try logging out of Jango to see if anything different on the same playlist. By the way, what’s the name of your song and the artist name you go by?

    • Reply
      Alan Grattan
      November 24, 2016 at 9:59 am

      I just did another test. Logged in, listening to Bob Dylan radio, Robin Henry/Close Your Eyes And Say Goodbye is playing.

      My song is “Nobody Won” and you have the artist name :).

      • Reply
        Brian Hazard
        November 27, 2016 at 7:15 pm

        Nice sleuthing Alan! Fwiw, I’ve always been logged in to Jango when I see the independent artist pop-up. Maybe you’re having an AdBlock issue Eu?

  • Reply
    Eu Jin
    November 28, 2016 at 9:17 pm

    Thanks Allan & Brian for the feedback. Actually finally tested out by creating a user account and logging into Jango. Once logged in you will see random indie artists plays after every 10 well known artist plays. So it is legit and it works as long as the user is logged in. If you are logged out, you will not hear any indie-artist plays. Still have not heard from and wished they would have sent me an email to clarify the confusion.

  • Reply
    John Moore
    January 22, 2017 at 10:50 am

    Hi Brian , John Moore Connected (my group name) I wanted to sell my music privately at $15.00 USD includes S&H or $7.50 for email with all songs . I belong to CD Baby . What is the best way to sell my music? John Moore

    • Reply
      Brian Hazard
      January 22, 2017 at 5:55 pm

      I think Bandcamp is your best bet for that configuration.

      • Reply
        John Moore
        January 23, 2017 at 11:48 am

        Hi Brian , I have never heard of Band Camp . CD Baby seems to give the Artist very little return . If I am selling my CD for $15.00 USD am I charging to much ? You can hear my music go to Google Search type in John Moore Connected click on Jango-Free Internet Radio . Thanks for any help. John Moore

        • Reply
          Brian Hazard
          January 23, 2017 at 12:53 pm

          Honestly John, nobody buys CDs anymore. Dedicated fans will pay $15 to support you, but it’s no way to make a living. $7 is more reasonable for an unknown indie.

          • John Moore
            January 24, 2017 at 12:04 am

            Hi Brian , if CDs are no longer sought after how do you get your product to the consumer ? Would it be straight email at $7.00 ? I am more into the music with not a very good business sense . I really appreciate your input . John Moore

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