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Smart Links For Music: Which Is Best For Growing Streams?

By Matthew Vultaggio

July 7, 2021

If you want to get more streams and fans by combining smart link webpages with digital ads, you’ve probably become overwhelmed with all the different options out there. So, I’ve researched a whole tonne of them and found the best solution for you.

The best smart links for music promotion can be made with a basic WordPress website and a plugin called Thrive Themes. This is cheaper, has no limitations for basic features, allows you to split-test designs, and you can easily create any style of smart link landing pages using a simple drag-and-drop editor.

After searching for a good landing page solution to allow me to effectively run Facebook ads to grow my Spotify streams, I noticed that there was an endless amount of smart links for music, all with different limitations and price points.

I ended up learning how to make my own custom smart links using WordPress and Thrive Themes, and have used these landing pages to help me get over 3 million streams on Spotify to date.

To learn more about the best solution for smart links, how you can make your own custom smart links, how you can get free templates in the style of other smart link pages, and reviews of popular smart link solutions, simply keep on reading, my friend. 🙂

The Top Smart Link Alternative

The best alternative to the endless amount of smart links, landing pages, and link-in-bio style pages out there is to simply build your own custom smart links by using WordPress.

I do this myself with my very own WordPress-based website (aka the one you are on right now) and find it to be way more flexible and effective, particularly if you want to do the Spotify algorithm hack by running Facebook and Instagram ads to your smart link pages.

The reasons I’d recommend doing this over using the any smart link creator is because:

  • Without paying for these services, you can create smart links that are exactly in the style of Hypeddit, Linktree, Toneden, HyperFollow, etc.
  • Get more streams to your music by using my highly tested and conversion-optimized smart link template
  • Look more professional and credible by having a custom domain and no other company’s branding on them
  • Get your brand and identity across by perfectly customizing your smart links to look exactly how you want them to

On top of this, you’d actually have a legit and professional full-blown website and not just some smart links for promoting your music.

For a free step-by-step course on how to get started with this, check out my free course on smart links for music.

The things you can do with a website are endless (ie: blogs to rank on Google like this post you are reading, create a Patreon-style membership, private webpages for your fans to create unique experiences, etc)

But, to start, how can you go about creating your own smart links for promoting your music in the style of Hypeddit, ToneDen, etc?

How To Easily Make Custom Smart Links For Music

To create your own smart links in the style of any smart link builder you would like, all you need is either a simple WordPress-based website. If you already have a website solution in place, you may be able to create your own smart links at no extra cost to you.

To create your own smart links for marketing your music, the truth is that you can really use any website creator on the market today. But, it is best if you have the ability to create pages that allow you to remove the header and footer menus like you can with WordPress or Squarespace.

Although both options are great, I use and recommend WordPress because:

  • There are no (or very low) monthly fees
  • More customization and flexibility because of the endless amount of WordPress plugins available
  • The option to use pre-made templates already in the style of Linktree, Toneden, Hypeddit, etc.

To get started with your very own custom WordPress website, all you need to do is install WordPress and then create some “smart link”-style landing pages with the free built-in WordPress page editor.

For a free step-by-step course on how to get started with this, check out my free course on smart links for music.

To install WordPress as quickly and easily as possible, I’d recommend using a web hosting service like Bluehost that gives you web hosting, a website domain, and then instantly sets up WordPress on it for you, all in just a few simple clicks.

Then, when you want to take things to the next level, you can install a premium theme that allows you to perfectly reproduce the looks of other smart link pages and even download pre-made templates like Thrive Architect.

If you are just starting out, I’d recommend starting off with a simple WordPress-based website to keep your costs low and then upgrade to a premium theme when you feel ready to make the leap.

With that said, I’m personally using Bluehost to take care of all of my website needs and have also installed Thrive Architect to not only build smart links in the style of DistroKid HyperFollow but also to create the entire website that you are on right now. 🙂

Is ToneDen Worth It?

ToneDen is worth it to artists and musicians that have money to spare and do not want to go through the effort of creating their own landing pages and learn the Facebook Ads platform. However, ToneDen is not worth it for any musician or artist that wants to save money and have more design and fan targeting options.

There are several reasons you may want to consider alternatives to ToneDen. Although it is a great platform that is filled with many useful services and features, it does have its downsides, such as:

  • Technical limitations
  • Limited customization options
  • Really high monthly fees

I covered something similar in my previous article, Is Linktree Free? Hidden Costs Exposed!, but ToneDen uses the same marketing tactic called the “Freemium” model when it comes to offering their FanLink pages for “free”.

Essentially, they give away “free” services/features/products with the intent of hooking you on to their platform so that they can continue to entice you with paid monthly features.

To learn more about ToneDen, check out my article on the best ToneDen alternative for more. 🙂

What is Hypeddit & Is It Good?

Hypeddit is a music promotion tool that focuses on creating different smart link landing pages to promote music on Spotify, Soundcloud and other music streaming services.

Although Hypeddit does offer some other services and tools like sample packs and Facebook music tabs, their main offering is different styles of landing pages for music promotion.

Hyppedit is not good for any artists looking to do advanced music promotion but is good for any artist wanting to add a basic smart link to promote their music on their Instagram or other social media.

…so why is Hypeddit only good for basic music promotion?

This is because the ability to effectively run Facebook and Instagram ads and other useful music promotion strategies like lead collection require a monthly Hypeddit subscription.

It is for that reason that I would say the free version of Hypeddit is not good for artists or musicians, and that there are better alternatives for artists looking for a paid solution.

To learn more about Hypeddit and if it is worth it, click here to check out my full Hypeddit review.

What About Free Alternatives Like LinkTree?

Linktree is not free to use because its key features are locked behind a paid subscription. Although there is a “free” version, it is extremely limited and is clearly only there to persuade you to access the full version by paying them every single month.

Essentially, a “free” plan is meant to do these 3 things:

  1. Get you on their system.
  2. Covertly show you all the great reasons you should actually upgrade and why the “free” version is not enough.
  3. Get you so used to their system so that you feel like it would be too much hassle to go anywhere else.

And what happens after the 3rd step?

You start paying them every single month and lose everything you’ve built if you stop paying them.

EVERY. SINGLE. MONTH.

In other words:

Okay, a little bit dramatic with the title there, I know, but what I discovered when researching this topic was actually kind of scary. Particularly, what I found out about a marketing tactic called “Freemium”.

To learn more about LinkTree and freemium marketing tactics, check out my article called Is LinkTree Free? for more. 🙂

DistroKid HyperFollow Review

DistroKid HyperFollow does work great for DistroKid artists that want simple smart links. It is a good free option for DistroKid users but is not as good as the alternative of building fully customizable landing pages with WordPress or Squarespace.

Although a good place to start, any serious artist will eventually want to upgrade to having their own professional website with fully customizable landing page smart links in the style of HyperFollow.

With that said, with an ever-growing amount of “link in bio” style pages that are marketed specifically towards artists, musicians, producers, and bands, it is great that DistroKid provides a completely free option for its users built right in.

But, with that said, there is a better alternative that I have found (and now use to this day) that I would recommend for artists that want to take their career more seriously and take control of their music marketing.

To learn more about this, check out my full DistroKid HyperFollow review. 🙂

Feature FM Review

Feature FM can be used to grow Spotify streams and listeners by using their smart link landing pages and advertising services. However, the cost to use their services is quite high and the free features are too limited to be useful.

Even when paying for their higher-tier plans, their smart links have very limited customization options and most of the advertising can easily be done yourself for free using native ads managers such as the Facebook ads manager.

When it comes to Feature FM’s smart links, the best alternative is to simply build your own custom smart links with WordPress. It’s cheaper, you can make your smart links look exactly like Feature FMs (or ToneDen, HyperFollow, etc), you get a full website out of it, and did I mention it is cheaper?

With that said, for a closer look at what Feature FM smart link pages look like, dive into their pricing, and ultimately find out if Feature FM is worth it or not, check out my full Feature FM review. 🙂

Linkfire Review

The best alternative to Linkfire’s music marketing smart links is to do it yourself with your own WordPress website. WordPress is easy to use, is a much cheaper option, and allows for many more customization options.

Linkfire may be a bit easier to use, but you really do pay a premium for that minor convenience and get very limited features for the price that you pay.

In comparison, with a WordPress website, you can build out smart link landing pages that look exactly like Linkfire pages (or any other alternatives like ToneDen, Hyppedit, and so on). Plus. you can build out a fully-fledged website with any number of pages and blog posts to suit your needs.

Let’s take a look at the different plans that Linkfire has available, and how those prices and features compare to doing it yourself.

PlanPriceCustom SubdomainCustom DomainStore
Starter$10 /moNoNoNo
Pro$25 /moYesNoYes
WordPress (DIY)$5 /moYesYesYes

When you put the different plans side-by-side, it becomes pretty clear that the main thing that Linkfire is doing is charging more for convenience.

To learn more about Linkfire, check out my article on the best alternative to Linkfire. 🙂

Looking For A New Music Distributor?

Although my top suggestion for a music distributor is definitely DistroKid, I’ve gone ahead and compared DK to other popular services in case you are in the market for a new digital distributor or are simply just curious.

Popular alternatives to a music distribution service like DistroKid include TuneCore, CdBaby, Ditto, and Amuse.

If you would like to see how DistroKid compares to these services, more closely check out this articles:

Or, if you would like a more detailed look into what DistroKid has to offer, you can check out my big fat DistroKid review. 🙂

P.S. If you also want to learn about music publishing and make sure that you are not leaving any money on the table with your music distribution setup, I’d recommend checking out these 2 articles:

Some of my favorite music marketing tools

Thank you for reading this article, my friend, and I hope you found it helpful as you build your own successful career in music. 🙂

Here is a list of my favorite and most recommended tools and resources that I’ve personally used to get my music streamed over 4,000,000 times on Spotify as an artist.

Any of the paid services or tools listed here are most likely affiliate links, so if you do decide to use any of them, I’ll earn a small commission.

But in all honesty, these are the exact tools that I personally use, love, and recommend to anyone – including my own friends and family.

Music Distribution

To get your music on Spotify on all the other streaming services, I use DistroKid because you get unlimited song uploads for a low annual price.

If you want to learn more about DistroKid and music distribution, check out the in-depth DistroKid review that I’ve put together.

Or, if you want to get started with DistroKid right now, you can save on your first year with the DistroKid discount.

Music Publishing Royalties Collection

For collecting all of the publishing, mechanical, and live performance royalties owed to me whenever my music gets streamed or played, my go-to is Songtrust.

Songtrust is a publishing administration company which means that in addition to collecting all of those royalties for me, they do it on a global level.

To learn if Songtrust is right for you, I’d recommend checking out this article on Songtrust vs BMI.

And if you want to get started with Songtrust right now, I’d recommend learning about the Songtrust discount code so that you can get the best price. 🙂

Website & Smart Links

I’m personally not a big fan of the link-in-bio and smart links for music pages like ToneDen and Hyppeddit.

Instead, I prefer having a full-blown WordPress website that allows me to have a full website in addition to unlimited music links.

For getting started with this, I really like Bluehost because it is the cheapest and a theme called Thrive Themes because it is the most flexible and easiest to use.

I’ve actually created a free Smart Links Course that you can take to learn how to get set up and start getting more streams with custom smart links (I’ve even included the templates I am using!).

Want more tools and resources for your music career?

If you’d like to see even more of my favorite marketing tools and resources for musicians and music artists, I’ve created an even larger list on this page: Best Marketing Tools & Resources For Musicians (& Music Artists).

P.S. There are even some free tools and resources included on that page as well! 🙂

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