After months of waiting, the results are finally in! Sorry, let me rewind. A while back I made a post about a bunch of demos I sent out that were rejected which can be read here → They Rejected My Music Demo
Today it’s still one of the more popular posts on my site. I got a lot of feedback and suggestions, but one thing that stuck with me was this debate over whether or not full songs or short snippets were best when submitting a demo.
So, I decided to conduct a split test just to see which would yield better results.
Online Demo Submission
I say “mostly” because some of the libraries didn’t fit my criteria (look at me being picky)
I was biased during this test. I Purposely left out all libraries that were “pay to submit” based as well as those that didn’t have an upload feature. Why? Well, I’m lazy cheap and I’m lazy – that about sums it up.
Submission Process → Upload
Number of submissions → 60
30 music libraries x 2 email addresses → 60 submissions in total. The uploading process didn’t take too long, but a little longer than I expected. I uploaded to each library 1 at a time to avoid running into the same errors I did in the past.
Online Demo Submission Results
I had my money on the shorter demos because I’ve had a lot of success with them. It’s also something I picked up as an intern → I was the guy in charge of trashing demos based on a pretty crude formula.
Short Snippets – 23 accepted 7 rejected 76%
Full Songs – 17 accepted 13 rejected 56%
That’s a big difference and you want to know what the kicker is? I sent the same tracks to each library 2 months apart :). Full songs 1st, then the snippets. I did this because I wanted the split test to be more accurate.
If I sent different tracks, one could argue that the “music” itself was the determining factor, not the length. Sending the same tracks did pose a risk of the listener noticing duplicates, but I was willing to take that risk.
Demo Cd Submissions
I didn’t really know how to go about this. I wanted to make the test as accurate as I did with the online submission, but it wasn’t as easy as sending the same tracks with a different address heh.
I mean, I could have done that, but I didn’t want to ruin a relationship early on. It’s a lot of work getting in touch with the person who has the power to say “yes” – not going to gamble with that.
I racked my brain for a few hours then it hit me → just ask! That’s all I have to do is ask → “would you prefer a small sampler or full songs” ← that was the question.
So, I targeted 100 companies from Aaron’s licensing directory and contacted them. Surprisingly, most were willing to accept new music. I didn’t go through the entire list, I stopped at 60. I got tired of playing “phone tag”.
Oh, and for the record, this was a two-step process. 1st, I emailed with an introduction, and then I followed up with a call. This process seems to work pretty well, could change later on – everything is a split test in my world.
Demo Submission (CD) Results
Snippets – 32/60 = 53%
Full Songs – 28/60 = 46%
Those numbers aren’t too far off from one another. I wasn’t sure what to expect but did try to predict everyone’s preference based on their personality and how old I thought they were.
Sometimes I’m good at reading people other times I’m not.
Based on the results, I’ll take my chances and continue sending my 1-2 minute snippets. It’s been working for me and I don’t see a reason to change. If a company likes what they hear and wants more they’ll ask.