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Songwriting - Making it in the New Music Business

Updated: Jan 18

Making it in the Music Business
Making it in the Music Business

The question is - Songwriting - How do you make it in the new music Business?

Firstly we need to look at the changing music business model.

The Old Music Business Model

The old model was – create great music – get signed to a contract – create album sales and tours and merchandise. Live the rockstar lifestyle.

The world has changed. Gigs don’t pay well.

People listen to whole albums of music or playlists for next to nothing – a monthly fee or even free.

The New Reality

The artist who has created the music and paid for it to be recorded and mixed and mastered gets so little for every play that you need 230 plays to get a dollar. I met a young lady who felt she was really going places by saying she was getting a100,000 plays a month. Now she had achieved something that a lot of people are working hard to achieve so she is doing well.

But here is the problem

She paid musicians to play on her 3 songs, she paid someone to produce them. She paid some people to create videos for social media to advertise them.

100,000 plays earnt her around $435 a month. We didn’t discuss how much she paid for 3 songs and videos but it would be a lot more than that.

SO where is the Money?

This is nothing new but since covid people are watching a lot more tv and film.

The rise of companies like Netflix and Stan and all the other networks as seen an increase in the number of tv shows and film opportunities.

A talented or persistent music creator can build library of music and be paid a fee to use the music along with royalties earned when that music is heard.

You are not going to get rich over night and there is an initial investment to get the equipment you need but these have come down in price a lot in the last decade.

The other big earner for musicians is the Patreon model, where you build a loyal fan base that pay a monthly fee to get exclusive access to you and your music.

I am in the process of building my own Patreon style community around songwriting and although there are start-up costs.

I am looking to build a fanbase of 1000 songwriters paying a minimum of $20 a month to get access to knowledge and opportunities.

Once I have reached my goal I will earn at least $20,000 a month and pay a team to help me create the content to give real value to my community.

Be Patient and Build Something that Lasts

I am working on this talking around 3 years to build.

I expect to take the same amount of time to build a library of music for Sync Music (the official name for music for film and tv).

It is possible to have a full-time career in music you just have to think differently, be patient and work consistently.

Lastly build a team around you. So far I have a really good audio engineer and a good marketing person. I also have a number of people ready to go when I have some money to pay them for content.

People want what you have to offer you just need to present if differently and think long game.

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