Groover is an online platform that connects artists with playlist curators, blogs, labels, and other music professionals.
I mean, you’re not just going to shotgun out cold emails, right? RIGHT? 😅
For now, I’d like to walk you through my campaign for my latest single “The Serious One.”
It’s a quirky one for sure, probably more of a “grower” than a “grabber” and certainly not a “banger”! I don’t think it sounds like anyone else, which makes it hard to nail down a genre. That’s all to say I wasn’t planning to take the world by storm.
Expectations in check? Then let’s proceed…
Launching a Groover Campaign
For starters, you’ll want to flesh out your profile. The site holds your hand through the entire process, with a percentage completed indicator to make sure you don’t skip over anything.
Mine looks like so:
Once that’s done, click on the “Start a campaign” link in the header and we’re off to the races!
Now’s probably a good time to mention that Dorian Perron, the co-founder and nicest guy in the world, gave me some pointers and provided some Grooviz so I could test out the platform.
What are Grooviz, you ask? They’re the coin of the land. Sure, they could’ve just called them credits, but we’re here to have a good time, right?
I don’t know what the singular form of Grooviz is, but one of them costs €1 unless you’ve got a discount code. It just so happens that I’ve got one for you, but I’m getting ahead of myself!
The reason I bring all this up now is that this is where you enter a release date. Dorian recommended not launching the campaign to Spotify playlist curators until the track is out, because they might reject tracks without a Spotify link.
Fortunately, you can save the campaign as a draft and launch it on release day with just a few clicks.
If you’re just looking for feedback to improve your track, you can mark it as a demo. I wish more people did this because my advice as a curator (did I mention I’m a curator too?) tends to be technical and actionable. When artists actually make the changes I suggest, I’m very likely to approve their track!
Next up, tell Groover what you’re hoping to get out of the relationship. I went with only the top option, and I suspect most of you will do the same.
Normally I wouldn’t bother with influencers, but I went with the whole shebang for testing purposes.
There are other curator types available within the other two main options including labels, managers, concert bookers, publishers, and sync supervisors.
Now select a budget range. If you want to! You aren’t obligated to stick to it, but it helps Groover assemble a list of suggested curators for you.
I ended up going with 85 curators for 186 Grooviz, which was admittedly a splurge.
I could’ve upped my approval percentage by reining things in, but I wanted to properly kick the tires.
After that, Groover sifts through their inventory of curators (2264 as of this writing) to find the best matches, based on what options you selected, the language/release date, any past campaigns, and the genres you indicated in your bio.
In my case, it came up with 225:
It costs 2 Grooviz per curator to submit with the exception of Top Curators which are 4 Grooviz. Half of that goes to the curator and the other half to Groover.
Top Curators constitute less than 3% of the curators on the platform and are chosen for their “undeniable influence and the quality of the content they produce.” I’m one of them, not to brag or anything. 😅
I spent a solid two hours working through the list and made it about halfway through before I resorted to further filtering. There are many helpful ways to narrow down your choices, from geography to previous interactions on the platform.
Here’s an example of a playlist curator’s profile:
That gives you a pretty good idea of what the curator is looking for, but you can also click on “See info” to learn more about a specific playlist:
Unlike SubmitHub, Groover doesn’t provide any info on how many streams your track is likely to receive, which admittedly isn’t easy to come by. I had Chartmetric open in another tab to perform some cursory research.
The “Media Outlet” designation in particular strikes me as ambiguous. For example:
I see a 57% opportunity rate, so it seems they’re not very picky. I’m proud to report that I made the cut and was promised a blog post. Going in, I didn’t know whether to expect that, a tweet, a Facebook post, a YouTube video, or an Instagram Story.
Once you’ve completed your selections, there are just a few more steps.
You can and should enter a pitch. For better or worse, here was mine:
I suggest providing some hype-free insight into the why and how of the song. As a curator, I don’t need the artist to tell me about their “amazing vocals.”
You can write individual messages to each curator, which could potentially go a long way. I know I pay extra attention when someone uses my first name in a pitch.
After that, you’ll see a list of your selections and a few bonus recommendations before the moment of truth:
If you use my affiliate link and promotional code PASSIVEPROMOTIONVIP you’ll get a 10% discount.
And I’ll earn a small commission which will go towards future experiments! Note that the screenshot above isn’t from this campaign.
You can track your submissions on the “My Campaigns” page, which at this point will look something like this:
Putting on my curator hat for a moment, here’s how things look on our end when we review your submission:
If a curator agrees to share your track or clicks a box indicating that the artist can contact them, you get their email address. I’m not entirely comfortable with that, but it’s not like my email address is that hard to find in the first place!
Over time you end up with a long list of email addresses, which I suggest you reserve for emergencies only:
Unlike SubmitHub, there’s no on-platform chat between artists and curators.
Curators have one week to respond to your submission or you get your Grooviz back.
My Groover Campaign Results
I received 14 approvals. Of those, 11 have shared the track so far. 56 curators declined and 15 didn’t respond.
That works out to a 20% approval rate (14 out of 70), slightly better than I typically manage on SubmitHub.
But that says more about my track and my selections than the platform.
Here’s how those shares break down:
Finally, Independent Radio added it to a YouTube playlist.
The remaining three shares are for two blog posts and I’m guessing this Spotify playlist (173 followers).
As a result, my track went to #1 on the Billboard Hot 100. 😇
Wouldn’t that be nice? In reality, the Spotify playlists have netted me about 20 streams so far and the rest is unmeasurable.
UPDATE: A few hours after publishing this post, Portal POP Mais came through with a really nice review.
Groover vs SubmitHub
That brings me to my biggest concern with Groover: you just don’t know what kind of impact a share will have.
With SubmitHub, you know precisely what you’re gunning for before you pull the trigger. For example, here’s what artists see before submitting to my playlist:
None of this relies on info I provide. It’s all cold hard data based on my history with the platform.
If I had to guess, none of the Groover curators I submitted to would have engagement scores above 5 on SubmitHub. I would’ve most likely filtered them out from the beginning!
I’ll look up the ones that approved me to check:
1 – Frecuencia Millennial
1 – Buzz Slayers
1 – Nosso Som
2 – Synth Lovers Café
4 – UKI
The rest aren’t on SubmitHub. Note that a curator’s engagement score is genre-specific. I went with “Electro Pop” because it’s widely accepted, but the score based on the genre(s) of my track could be different.
To be clear, I’m not saying these shares have no value! They certainly do, and I was pleased as punch to receive them.
But I most likely wouldn’t have submitted to those curators in the first place, with the exception of fellow synthwave musician and partner in crime Synth Lovers Café.
Those hours I spent researching Groover curators across dozens of browser tabs aren’t anywhere close to as powerful as moving a few sliders on SubmitHub.
Another nice feature on SubmitHub: if a curator doesn’t want to receive a track until release day, it’ll automatically postpone delivery until then.
SubmitHub is simply a more robust and mature platform, with loads more options and features like charts, Hot or Not, influencer-specific campaigns, and coming soon, a musician’s marketplace that will likely give Fiverr a run for its money.
If I run into a problem, I let Jason know and he typically has it fixed in days if not hours. From what I can tell, he’s working on the site all day, every day.
On the curator side, the difference is even starker. With SubmitHub, I restrict submissions to only synthwave and synthpop tracks with vocals sung in English and release dates newer than one month. That saves me from wasting my time and artists from wasting their money.
I could go on, but the fact is, I’m a SubmitHub evangelist. Others consider it the place where music goes to die.
To be fair, Groover is constantly improving too. I noticed some differences already in trying to capture screenshots for this post. They’re receptive to feedback and are in the process of addressing the issues I discuss here.
Here’s one thing that Groover arguably does better than SubmitHub: when a curator needs something before they can share your track (press release, photos, audio), you’re asked to upload them.
When other curators need the same files, Groover automatically supplies them, but you can replace them if you want:
I’ve heard from many artists that the feedback on Groover is simply nicer. It seems about the same to me, but I’ve got pretty thick skin so maybe I’m not the best judge.
Groover Conclusions and Recommendations
Is SubmitHub better than Groover? Yes. Should you still use Groover? Yes.
Groover has hundreds if not thousands of curators that you simply can’t reach on SubmitHub, with large communities in France, Italy, Germany, the UK, Brazil, Mexico, and Spain.
I see it not as an alternative to SubmitHub, but as a supplement.
For now, researching curators is more work. I suggest using the “save to list” feature to bookmark impactful shares so you can retarget those curators in future campaigns.
If you decide to give Groover a shot, please support the site by using my affiliate link. 😘
Promotional code PASSIVEPROMOTIONVIP gets you a 10% discount (here’s how to apply it).
Have you tried Groover? Have something to say about SubmitHub? Share your thoughts and results in the comments!