Progressing towards the path of music is never easy. Not only will you be working nonstop; your source of income will never be stable as well. Yes, every career path has its ups and downs, but it is definitely clear to see in the music industry. So if you are going to go full time as a musician, you better have some knowledge of the other source of music industry income. In reality, musicians make money mostly by diversifying their revenue streams. Meaning, the more they expand their source of income, the more rewarding their music endeavors shall be. Long gone the glory days of music record stores, and with the steady decline of physical record sales, musicians really need to have an open mind in terms of approaching their source of potential income.
However, with the right knowledge and a good business sense, making money as a musician isn’t actually all that difficult. Here are some of the ways on how musicians can make money.
Digital Distribution Is A Must
Bottom line, musicians make money by selling music. You are a musician, after all. However, the time has changed; the physical distribution of your records cannot sustain you anymore. You must have an online presence. Music has never been as accessible as it is now. You need to be easily found on every media platforms. If you want you can find a friendly aggregator as well that can manage your music all over the net for you if you cannot do it for yourself. Utilize social media, promote your music on the internet, and make your name widely known.
Make sure that you use the power of the digital age that we are right now to your advantage. Create a website wherein you can put promotional materials, schedule for your shows, merchandise sales, and of course your music. But that does not mean that you should disregard your CDs and focus solely on digital distribution. Selling music at your respective shows and record stores near you are also important. Push both physical and digital sales as much as you can.
Making your fans or followers buy and enjoy your music is your primary goal as a musician; however, selling merchandise of your band or yourself is definitely big business. In fact, you and your group can even make more money selling merch than your own music, especially if you managed to acquire a very loyal following. To generate extra income at your live shows, remember to print out even a small batch that you can put on your merch table. Do not go big at the get-go. It is imperative to gauge first the demand. See how much your fans consume your t-shirts, buttons, badges, stickers, and other merch on your shows and your website.
After that, create a business plan for the distribution of your merchandise. Always put to mind that merchandise sales are one of the most unreliable ways to make money in the music industry. You can have a fully packed gig but without any merch sale as much as you can have an empty show but with your merch booming. At the end of the day, any advertising is good advertising, and there is no other natural and advertisement out there for you and your band other than having people wear your band name on their shirt.
Organize Gigs/ Play Live Shows
Obviously, you have to play live to make money as a musician. In fact, you have to play at gigs or live shows to be even called a musician itself! Enjoy the thrill of performing live, not only that; it can be a fantastic way to make money. Think bigger regarding income streams concerning your live performances. Try to get your own gigs. As your name gets more prominent, as your fan base grows larger, so does your talent fee.
Strive on making a mark on the industry with your music and sooner rather than later you’d be expecting hefty amounts of money for your shows. But while you are still relatively unknown, try playing for charities, parties, or events as a trial run. No matter how little you earn when you start, do not give up and push right through. Treat each low paying gig or anytime you get to play live as a step forward towards your goal. Concentrate on building your reputation to greatness.
Teach How To Play Instruments Or Sing
As we said, you need to be diverse on how you can generate income in this industry. On your spare time, away from playing gigs and selling your brand of music, you can teach others how to sing or play an instrument as a part-time. In your spare time, help out a fellow aspiring musician. Many musicians can make money by teaching a particular instrument, theory, or a mixture of both, to inspire their colleagues in the industry to generate revenue towards their very own career.
If you are the lead vocal in your band or a solo act, you may help others sing the way as you do. If you are a guitarist or perhaps the drummer, then impart your knowledge with the instrument to your neighbors. Not only will you be making extra revenue with this practice, think of it as also being a great help to those who have the same dream as yours.
Create Your Very Own YouTube Channel
YouTube is another platform for musicians, such as yourself, that continues to produce out success stories. Better yet, the platform is free. Create cover videos, upload your original compositions, share some vlogs, and utilize the platform as much as you possibly can. What do you know; maybe you’d be the next successful musician that rose to prominence using YouTube. All you have to do is grab a camera, record yourself, and take full advantage of the platform’s advertising program to generate yourself extra money. And if you do make it big there, it can be your primary source of revenue as being famous on YouTube really does pay well.
It does sound contrary, but to succeed in the music industry is not only to be able to sell out your music to the world anymore. Musicians need to be diverse than ever before on how they will generate revenue. These are just a small portion of ways on how musicians can make money in today’s time. Take these notes to mind and explore further. Stay determined and believe in the brand of music you have. Every success story begins with a hardworking man or woman, no matter what career path they may tread.
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