Gone is the time when we paid to listen to music. Nowadays, if you want to hear something, you only have to make a couple of clicks.
And this implies that the musicians have completed their work, correct? Tell the truth.
This means that to sell your music, you will need to know everything you need to know about music distribution and promotion when you publish it. You also need some creativity you know, the same creativity that you use to make your music every day.
These are eight of the most underappreciated ways to monetize your music. They aren’t for everyone, but they’re worth a shot. They may astound you. Taking risks is necessary for success in the music industry. And it’s very simple to give it a shot, so why not?
1. Distribute your music without a label
The boom in digital music distribution has made distribution accessible to any artist — not just those with a record label. You don’t need to invest your entire promotional budget on it or split the benefits if you do it yourself.
Publishing your music to Spotify, iTunes, Apple Music, Google Play and other platforms opens you up to your fans no matter where they listen to your music. The royalties are not going to be huge instantly. But this offers you one more way to grow and promote your music while cultivating your fan base in other ways.
Also, playlists play a huge role in the age of digital music. Streaming platforms help by recommending your music to music lovers who have never heard of you. And these are your future fans, who will pay to attend your concerts, buy your album or merchandising or listen to your music in streaming.
The distribution ensures that all your efforts to promote your music are not wasted when someone searches for your music on their favourite platform.
2. Give away your music. But do it in style.
Selling an album is no longer sufficient. The way we sell music has changed as a result of streaming. People want music to be available to them at all times.
Consumers still want to support your music. Listeners just want something special. And in his way.
That’s why many artists have started giving their albums away, but with an extra special “something”.
How you sell your album or give it away has to be as creative as your music. So be creative in the way you publish your album. Sell an experience, not a “thing.”
Fiverr is a platform where musicians can sell their creations. And it is growing rapidly. It’s an online community where people can sell their services for as little as $5 creating beats, songs, and various other music services.
There is already a huge community of musicians who sell their tracks on Fiverr.
Post your music on Spotify, iTunes, Tidal. Instantly. Take a test.
But it’s still easy to stand out.
Practical tip: tracks that have been through mastering software tend to stand out easily and sell more.
4. Some musicians receive royalties every day. And you can too
Did you know that every time you listen to music in the elevator, the artist who created it receives the money?
I am not suggesting you start making elevator music (though if that’s your thing, go ahead). However, you should register with the organizations that handle artist royalties.
In the US it is ASCAP. In Canada it is SOCAN. But most countries have their services of this type.
5. Get Syncs
Syncs, also called placements, refer to music that is used in media such as TV shows, movies, or commercials.
Music supervisors or placement agents secure placements. They find music for their projects by using sound libraries.
Versus Media is one of the best places to start. They connect musicians with small TV shows or film projects that require music. Registration is also free.
Pump Audio is another excellent source of information. Simply upload two tracks to get “approved” and then upload all the music you want to your library.
6. Youtube IDs
YouTube is the internet’s most popular streaming service. It has surpassed iTunes, Spotify, and Tidal. And by a long shot.
You should charge for your music if you upload it to YouTube. YouTube uses a system called Content ID to determine where your song is being used.
If you find your music somewhere and the copyright belongs to you, you can monetize it by placing ads on the video. It’s like having your booking agent on YouTube.
Discover the details of Youtube Content ID here.
7. Take out merchandising
Merchandising is a sure value. But it is also an art that is being lost.
Whether it’s selling t-shirts and records at a concert or selling your sneakers on eBay, merchandising is a great (and affordable) way to make some money.
Fans want something authentic that comes from the artist — which streaming can’t do. So give them the option.
It isn’t even necessary to meet in person. BigCartel and Bandcamp give artists the tools they need to sell merchandise without overheating their servers.
8. Superfans (nine)
Money is not the most valuable currency in the music industry. They are the fans.
Feeding superfans is not an easy task. But it has its payoff. It implies being, first of all, human, and later, aspiring musician.
Superfans adore your music and will help you in any way they can. Forever and ever. To speak with them. Get to know them in person. Open yourself up when they contact you.
Surely one of the most important things for musical self-promotion is the real and pure relationship between the artist and his fans. So cultivate it.
More money, fewer issues
Now that you have an extra source of income, the best thing you can do is put it towards your project.
Save some money for your project and use it only when it is absolutely necessary. Set it aside and use it wisely to help your project grow.
But don’t blame us if your less intelligent artist pals start begging you for money to pay their rent.