Making a living as a musician can be tough. Unless you're one of the lucky few who have hit it big, you probably have to work another job to support your music career. But don't give up hope! There are plenty of ways to make money as a musician. In this blog post, we will discuss some of the best ways to make money with your music. So read on and start making some extra cash!
How To Make Money as a Musician
Some of the revenue streams available to musicians may sound obvious, although we're sure you'll find some gems in here.
1. Live Performances – This is probably the most obvious way for musicians to make money, but it can also be the most profitable. If you have a good stage presence and fans who come out to see your shows, then this could be a great source of income for you. Venues may pay performers a flat fee or offer them a percentage of ticket sales, so don't discount the possibility of performing live.
2. Record Sales – Selling recordings of your music is still an important source of income for musicians today. CDs are not as popular now as they once were, but digital downloads is on the rise and streaming services such as Spotify are becoming increasingly popular. Make sure to distribute your music across all platforms and set up a fan club so you can create special offers for buyers. Make sure you choose a distributor that will distribute your music to at the minimum: Spotify, Amazon, Apple Music, and Deezer.
3. Music Licensing – Music licensing is the practice of allowing third-party companies to use your music for their own projects, such as TV shows or movies. This could be a great source of passive income if you are able to sign deals with reputable firms. Just make sure that the terms of the deal are beneficial for both sides before signing any contracts!
4. Merchandise – Selling merchandise related to your music is another great way to make money as a musician. T-shirts, hats, keychains and other items branded with your logo will give fans an opportunity to show their support for your music. You can even create limited-edition items to add value and make them more attractive to buyers.
5. Online Coaching – If you have enough experience in the music industry, you could offer online coaching services to aspiring musicians. We recommend signing up for Sidetrain and offering your services there.
6. Sell Vinyl – Vinyl isn’t dead, and selling your music on vinyl could be a great way to make some extra money. Vinyl records are becoming more popular among the younger crowd and can give your music a unique physical presence that digital formats just can’t provide.
7. Live Streams & Twitch – Live streaming is becoming increasingly popular and can be a great way to make money as a musician. Platforms like Twitch, YouTube Live and Instagram allow you to stream music performances online and are often overlooked by musicians.
8. Patreon – Patreon is a great platform for musicians who want to make money from their music. It allows artists to create memberships that offer exclusive content and products to fans, in exchange for recurring payments. This can be an effective way of monetizing your music without having to rely on streaming services or record sales.
9. Crowdfunding – Crowdfunding platforms such as Kickstarter and Indiegogo are a great way to fund projects and make money as a musician. These sites allow you to reach out to fans who want to support your career by pledging money in exchange for exclusive content or products.
10. Create Beats – If you are a skilled producer, you could make money by creating beats and selling them to other artists. This can be a great way of making extra income without having to rely on record sales or live performances.
11. Collect Public Performance Royalties – Make sure you register your music with a Performance Rights Organization in order to collect public performance royalties whenever your music is played on the radio, TV or streaming services. This small amount of income can add up over time and be worth the effort.
12. Get Digital Royalties with SoundExchange – SoundExchange is a royalty collection agency that collects digital royalties on behalf of musicians. Signing up with them will ensure that you get paid whenever your music is streamed online.
13. License Your Music – You can also make money by licensing your music to other artists or businesses. Companies are always looking for licensed music that they can use in their projects, so don’t be afraid to reach out and inquire about license opportunities.
14. Start a YouTube Channel – If you have an existing fan base, starting a YouTube channel is one of the best ways to promote your music and make money as a musician. You can even monetize your videos with ads if you reach certain subscriber thresholds.
15. Sponsorships – Sponsorships are another great way to make money as a musician. Reach out to companies in your niche and offer them the chance to sponsor your music or live performances. This can be an effective way of making some extra income while also promoting your brand.
16. Write for Music Publications – If you have a knack for writing, consider writing for music publications like Pitchfork and Rolling Stone. These publications generally pay for quality articles and can provide you with exposure that will help you reach more people with your music.
17. Influencer Marketing – Influencer marketing is becoming increasingly popular and can be a great way to make money as a musician. Reach out to influencers in your niche and offer them the chance to promote your music or products. This can be an effective way of reaching more people with your music and making some extra income at the same time.
18. Create Merchandise – Creating merchandise such as t-shirts, hats, mugs, etc is another great way of making money as a musician. Not only will you make an extra income from the sales of these items but they also help to promote your brand and reach more people with your music.
19. Do Session Work – Doing session work is another great way to make money as a musician. Companies are always looking for talented musicians to record parts or play live shows, so don’t be afraid to reach out and inquire about available gigs in your area.
20. Create Your Own Music Platform – If you don’t want to rely on streaming services like Spotify or Apple Music, consider creating your own music platform. This will allow you to control how people consume your music, as well as give you the ability to monetize it directly. You can also use this platform to promote other products and services that are related to your music.
21. Apply for Music Grants – There are also numerous music grants and awards available for musicians, so make sure you keep an eye out for these opportunities. Applying for a grant or award could provide you with the financial support necessary to take your music career to the next level.
22. Create a Course – Creating a course is another great way to make money as a musician. Platforms like Udemy offer musicians the opportunity to create courses that teach people how to play an instrument or how to write music. This can be a great way of making some extra income while also helping others learn more about your craft.
23. Sell Services on Fiverr – Fiverr is a great platform for selling services like music production, mixing and mastering, songwriting, etc. Not only can you make some extra money from these services but it also gives you the chance to connect with potential clients around the world.
24. Collect Live Performance Royalties – Collecting live performance royalties is another great way of making money as a musician. This can include streaming performances that you have done, as well as any physical performances such as concerts and festivals. Make sure to keep track of your performances so that you don’t miss out on any potential royalties.
25. Write an e-book: If you have some knowledge or expertise related to music, consider writing an e-book about it. This can be a great way of monetizing your knowledge and reaching more people with your music. Platforms like Amazon make it easy to self-publish your book so don’t be afraid to give it a try!
26. Create a Paid Newsletter on Substack – Substack is a great platform for creating paid newsletters that can help you make money as a musician. Not only will you make some extra income from the subscribers but it also gives you the chance to engage with your fans and keep them updated on new releases or tours.
Making money as a musician is no easy task, but it is possible with the right strategies in place. Leverage the tips mentioned above and start monetizing your music today! With hard work and dedication, you'll soon be earning more than enough to continue pursuing your passion. Good luck!