Header Ads Widget

How to Make Money with Music: 12 Creative Strategies

Being an artist now is simultaneously easier and harder than ever to succeed. We have more resources to release music and build fans, but we also have more competition than ever and are overwhelmed with advice on how to make money as a rapper or singer (and it's becoming harder to tell which 'influencer' actually has any success or is capable of the results they offer).

I want to make it easier on you so I've compiled 12 ways to make money with music as a recording artist. Check it out below.

1) Merch

Selling merch is how so many of us make money in general and especially on tour. I booked and managed a tour where the artist made more money after the show than she was paid to perform. It was dope on nights we took door split dates or free shows. With Print-on-Demand companies like Printful, you can do it at no cost to you! They ship for you, too.

2) Streams/Sales

I'd rather have 0.99 up front for an iTunes purchase than get 250 streams to earn that same amount but all they add up! Sell your music. YouTube Content ID has made me a lot of money. I use multiple distributors (including my deal with Empire), but DistroKid is one of my favorites of the DIY music distributors. Click here to sign up for DistroKid and save 7%: https://distrokid.com/vip/seven/559127

3) Licensing

I think everyone would love to get their music in movies, tv, and commercials. I've had some of my artists license songs for TV and Movies and we made a few nice checks. There are great platforms like music xray or music gorilla that share opportunities for you to submit to.

4) Publishing

Performing rights organizations like BMI, ASCAP, and SESAC make payments to writers and composers for performances (radio, tv, live music) but there are other societies like the MLC, SoundExchange, Harry Fox Agency, Music Reports, and MusixMatch (lyrics) who collect other royalties. Or you can join SongTrust and let them handle all of that for you! Songtrust collects from all of those agencies and more internationally, so you don't have to register and file over and over again for each society. Great time saver.

5) Live events

Do shows! Coming up in the scene in Cleveland, we always earned a % from the tickets we sold. I'll get more in depth on my thoughts on pay-to-play shows another time. Do shows where you get paid for selling tickets and invite all your friends, fans, and family. Or you could find a few likeminded artists and pool your money and rent a venue together. Then promote it together and split the money made at the door.

One time I had a show where we had to sell tickets for $5 and they paid me $2 per ticket. But I told friends if they paid $8 I'd give them a CD, too. So instead of making $3 I made $5. How can you update that for today's streaming model? Can you give merch? Digital collectibles?

6) Endorsements/Affiliate Sales

Sponsorships are dope. Companies want to reach the fans in your demographic. So, who can you get to fund your tour, show, or album? Many companies offer an affiliate program, too so you can share links and earn revenue if someone buys. Want to go more in depth on sponsors? Click here to schedule a free 30 minute consultation with me to come up with a plan for you.

7) Appearances

If you're at a level you can charge for shows, do it. Can you bring 20 people who will pay $10 to see you? Tell promoters you'll perform for $100. You both make $100 from the audience. Charge to speak at an event or walk through at a club (but you have the have the #s to support that request). What can you charge for an appearance?

8) Film/TV/Voice Acting

Doing voiceovers are great and with streaming platforms like Tubi hosting indie films, it's easier to get cast in films now, especially if you have a following. Ask for a fee to appear in the film. But if they don't have the budget ask for a % of money on the backend and help promote it. Or offer to create a soundtrack for them!

9) Features

Artists collaborate all the time. If you aren't at a level to charge for a feature, then collab and split earnings (make sure you fill out your split sheets). DistroKid makes that really easy to automatically split earnings. So if you and a friend decide to make a 50/50 split on your song, DistroKid will send 50% to you immediately, rather than you having to chase down your friend and hope s/he pays you.

10) Songwriting

Get your publishing together then get to writing. There are a lot of people with great voices or "the look" who can't write. Sell them songs. Or team with a producer and sing a hook on one of the beats then license it together with a pre-made hook! Sites like BeatStars are great for that.

11) Teaching

There has to be something you're good at. What can you teach? When I was studying in Thailand, I was hired by some teachers at my school to teach their kids how to rap. Seriously. I performed at the school's talent show and a few teachers approached me afterwards with an offer. We picked a date and they paid and fed me to show their kids how to write rhymes and we wrote a verse together. Can you DJ? Engineer? etc So many musicians make money teaching lessons to kids. What can you do?

12) Subscriptions/Memberships

Patreon and OnlyFans changed the game by modernizing the fan club model. Even social media allows subscriptions now, too. Have enough worthwhile content to monetize?

Looking for ways to implement these? DM me or schedule a Free 1-on-1 to go over your goals! - https://calendly.com/essince/consultation

Post a Comment