Whilst completing a musical project that you’re proud of is rewarding enough, it definitely doesn’t hurt to earn some income off of it as well. For many independent artists, figuring out the best ways to monetize their music can be tricky. That’s why we’ve taken it upon ourselves to explain five of the easiest ways to earn revenue from your music.
1. Streaming Services
It’s undeniable that streaming services have changed the music industry and become one of, if not the most opportunistic place for artists to earn money for their work. Whether it’s through interactive (listeners interact with the platform by choosing what song they want to listen to whenever they want) or non-interactive (the platform plays a song at random, without the ability to select specific songs), with streaming platforms, artists are given the opportunity to earn income through royalty payments. In addition to royalties, platforms like Spotify, Apple Music and Pandora provide a space for artists to expand their exposure to a global audience, capitalize on promotional and marketing opportunities and engage more closely with their fans. Getting your music included on a top playlist is another great benefit of exposure from these platforms.
2. Distribution Platforms
Distribution platforms monetize both your streamed music and your downloadable tracks. With streaming services being the most dominant form of music consumption, a distribution platform helps distribute your music across these major streaming services and collect royalties. There’s a wide variety of distributors that include different benefits and payouts for your music. Some of the most widely used and popular ones include Landr, CD Baby, TuneCore, Spotify for Artists, Amuse and DistroKid.
3. Synch Licensing
Music licensing allows legal permission for use of copyrighted music while ensuring the owners of the copyrights are paid royalties for the use of their creations. Synch licensing specifically allows for your copyrighted music to be used in any visual media such as video games, television, movies and commercials. In addition to being a major source of revenue for artists, synch licensing also provides new exposure for artists and a way to attract new fans. Unlike a streaming service, those seeking music for their visual projects aren’t concerned with mainstream success, traffic volume or fan engagement. They simply want something that matches their project. With the demand for music in visual media at an all-time high, the opportunity to make money from your music through licensing is more abundant than ever. Check out Musicbed, Artlist, Epidemic Sound, Music Vine, LuckStock, and Audio Network to get started with music licensing.
4. Social Video Platforms
There are several platforms where revenue can be earned from your music being used in videos. From YouTube to Facebook, Instagram and TikTok, you should be taking advantage of every opportunity for monetization possible.
Of all the video platforms available, YouTube offers the most opportunities to earn revenue. The different revenue sources include:
- YouTube Premium subscribers: YouTube pays revenue per view from users watching for free. Artists earn even more per view when Premium subscribers watch.
- YouTube Music streaming revenue for Art Tracks: CD Baby delivers audio to YouTube with each song appearing as its own “video,” with the artwork and other metadata.
- Content ID from video ads: CD Baby sends your tracks to YouTube so it can recognize when a video is uploaded with your songs. When the audio is recognized, YouTube places an ad on the video so you can earn revenue from ad clicks.
Facebook videos, whether it be a story or full-length profile video, are another great monetization opportunity. When you opt-in for Social Video Monetization from a distribution service and select Facebook Monetization, your music will become available to be placed in Facebook videos by other users.
Just like its parent company, Facebook, Instagram offers monetization through its video options as well. Similar to Facebook, artists can make their music available for uses to place in their Stories or Reels. Revenue is earned from Instagram Story placements, whole exposure is earned from Reels placements. Artists can all monetize IGTV directly with IGTV ads.
With TikTok dances, trends and skits taking over on a daily basis, artists are given the perfect opportunity to earn some extra revenue. Users select songs to match the content of their video, allowing artists to promote their music and when done right, pick up traction through trends. Every time a new video is created using an artist’s music, they earn revenue.
5. Community Platforms
An alternative to the traditional distribution platforms is to use community platforms to sell your digital downloads. A great benefit of using community platforms is it cuts out all the extra steps and connects fans directly to your and your music. Two of the most widely-known community platforms to consider using are Bandcamp and SoundCloud.
Thinking of joining us at PBLA? We offer a plethora of courses in music production and DJing including our newest and most extensive Music Production & Sound Design Master Diploma programme as well as our DJ/Producer Certificate, Music Production & Sound Design Diploma, Mixing & Mastering Award, Music Production & Composition Award and more. For additional information, contact a course advisor or, if you’re in the USA, give us a call on 323 282 7660. If you’re calling internationally, use the number +44 20 7729 4884.
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