How exactly are you supposed to promote your music?

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I’ve been making music for around three/four years and I feel like I’ve gotten to a point where the music I make is listenable and the people who hear it will sometimes message me saying it was “better than they expected”. All this is good and all, but it doesn’t matter if you have the best song in the world if nobody hears it, and the thing is I have no idea how to get people to hear it. I’ve tried paying for ads, I’ve tried instagram (whether it was posting or commenting), I’ve tried internet forums, making reddit posts that only get 2 upvotes, and I’ve even tried to promote in person by hanging flyers around the city I live and yet none of it seems to budge my numbers at all. If it does, it eventually goes back down after 2 weeks and I’m back where I started. I firmly believe I’ve improved when it comes to my production skills. I listen to older music that I’ve made that isn’t online, and I hear a difference, but it almost seems like that difference doesn’t even matter. People just assume I’m a soundcloud rapper when I don’t even rap (I make indie/electronic type music) and that’s how I know they didn’t even bother to check a single track, and other people have just plainly told me “it’s been 3 years since you started, you might as well give up”. My spotify listeners number has virtually remained the same for the last two years even, and it always goes back down to 0 the second I turn off my phone and stop promoting. I don’t know what I’m doing wrong, but I’m definitely doing something very wrong. I’m just looking for advice to fix whatever mistake I’m doing when it comes to marketing my music, because I know I can do better and I’m willing to put in the work. I just don’t know what actions to take.

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