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6 Benefits of Music Licensing For Artists Explained

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Curious about the benefits of music licensing for artists?

Music licensing helps provide artists with yet another way to get paid. The licensed use of copyrighted music typically provides an upfront fee and backend royalties from public performances. 

Without licensing and the firm guidelines surrounding it, the world of music would become quite chaotic. As an artist and performer, it’s essential to understand the importance of music licensing and how you can use it to your advantage.

6 Benefits of Music Licensing

6 Benefits of Music Licensing

Your goal might be to have your music appear in a commercial or the next big feature film. However, many of you might see this as a mere pipe dream. I’m here to tell you that even as an independent, you can still benefit from the many areas of music licensing. 

While the million-dollar placement always sounds impressive, typically from iconic legacy artists like The Beatles or Madonna, we want you to know that there are other licensing opportunities out there that you might be overlooking. 

Before you go hunting for that life-changing placement, understanding the different benefits that music licensing provides is where you should begin your journey. Below we have outlined a number of these benefits for you to explore.

More Exposure

Musicians typically create music so that other people can be exposed to it and enjoy it. Some artists may focus solely on the pursuit of money and fame. While the pure love for music may be the drive for others. Regardless where your drive comes from, there’s no better feeling than knowing someone found enjoyment from your creation.

It used to be a challenge to distribute music to the masses when an artist started their journey. The local music store was where you went to find new music, and rarely were these stores filled with local indie musicians. These days, the internet has made it easier than ever to share music with the masses. Furthermore, when you utilize the power of music licensing, you open yourself up to all kinds of extra exposure.

This is because people can use your music in several different ways. Let’s say your music gets featured in a movie, a commercial, or even a YouTube video, for example; This has the potential to take your music to new heights in the blink of an eye. This is how many artists have gained immediate exposure and popularity. However, keep in mind that not all licensing opportunities are created equal.

With that said, don’t underestimate the smaller placements that you may land as they may prove to provide you with more exposure than you could have ever predicted.

New Income Streams

Music licensing has the potential to become a reliable income stream for you and your music career. There are many ways you can license your music in all kinds of media like tv shows, major and independent films, advertising, and video games. 

Sync licensing, for example, creates income when someone wants to use your music for something like a TV show, commercial, video game or movie. By permitting someone to use your content via a license, you get the opportunity to negotiate how you’ll be compensated for that use.

How much money you make will depend on the terms of the license.

A major motion picture, for example, will get you a lot more money than an independent film, but all artists have to start somewhere.

Other opportunities could come when your music is included in live streams or even over the intercom at your favorite clothing store.

Live performances in a public setting can generate royalties as well when someone else is performing your work. This is just scratching the surface of all the possibilities that we will discuss in further detail shortly. 

Music Licensing and Residual Income

Long after a project is completed, residual royalty payments can come through to supplement your income as well. Each time that your work is used by someone else, this will cause a disbursement of funds that you, the rights holder of the copyright, are entitled to 

The amount owed to you will all depend on a number of different factors which you can learn more about here.

With music licensing, having the rights to your content can trigger payments for the rest of your life and for your beneficiaries’ lives long after you’re gone. 

As a musician, you probably won’t be able to make a living off of residuals right off the bat. However, with the right opportunity and some luck, these amounts can add up over time. Especially if you become involved in a significant project or something that goes viral. 

Building Your Resume

You may be on the fence about licensing music that you’ve recently created. Furthermore, it can be tricky to decide when you should go ahead and pitch your music for licensing opportunities.

Not to mention the growing pains of landing your first placement (especially on your own) can be very disheartening. The good news is, that once you begin to land these placements, they do become great bargaining chips and points of leverage for you to start landing even more opportunities.

Telling the venue, you are trying to book that your latest release was on the newest Netflix Original Series certainly won’t hurt your case for securing that booking. Not to mention when you’re pitching for other licensing opportunities, it looks great when you can show that this isn’t your first time around the block.

Placements are (for the most part) never a bad thing and can help move you closer to your goals as an artist.

Creates More Opportunities

Once your music has been licensed and used by another person in the industry, you may find that other opportunities start to open up over time. You’ll notice that a lot of the same artists are frequently featured on specific television shows. 

This is because it makes a lot of sense to use the same genre of music to tell a story in a movie or TV show. If you have a specific style of music that your work always follows, you may find that people come back again and again. 

Not to mention, people tend to like working with someone they are already familiar with or have a strong relationship with. It’s a lot easier to keep you in mind for new opportunities when someone has already had a solid experience with you previously. Having your material organized and ready to go. 

A Quality Sync Usage Can Keep a Record Alive

When you have a quality sync license in place, your music can live forever through other avenues. A good record can be played again and again over time.

Having music in many different places will also help to bring that music back to life. We’ve all had a favorite album or song that we listened to over and over again. 

As time goes on, we often forget about these tracks. However, as soon as you hear that song in a movie for example, you’re inspired to bring that old album back out and listen to it again. 

It isn’t always about making money upfront, and sometimes, longevity is far more important to your success. Getting your music licensed isn’t something that happens overnight. It takes a good deal of research and understanding to make strong decisions for your work.

As the benefits of music licensing won’t come easy, there are several ways to attack the situation and gain momentum to carry you into bigger and better opportunities.

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Music With Flavor Staff

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