Who said that musicians and music groups should take a vow of poverty?
Today there are dozens of ways to earn money and make a living from your music full-time!
Perhaps some of them are still obscure to you, so it is essential to consider them all before integrating them into the business model of your artistic project.
Because it is business and entrepreneurship that we are talking about here. What income will allow you to offset your expenses and invest in your career?
The solution to your problems lies above all in the diversification of its sources of income.
Here are 12 ideas and ways to live from your passion for music!
1. The sale of CDs and vinyls
Despite everything we say, physical media are always a sure value for both artists and fans.
Whether it is CDs, vinyls, DVDs or cassettes, selling your music in “physical” will allow you to generate an attractive return on investment.
So don’t forget to have at each of your live performances and dedicate some of them to increase their perceived value.
2. Concerts and festivals
Although many new musicians prefer mainly unpaid concert opportunities, the stage is now the lifeblood of the vast majority of professional artists.
When the record collapses, the price of the ticket goes up and industry players see it as a new Eldorado.
As such, it is really one of the best ways to generate money with your music.
However, remember that if you play too often in the same city, your potential fee will decrease. So, reconcile quantity and quality in your apparitions.
3. The sale of physical and dematerialized merchandising
Merchandising is a great complement to CD sales, both in concert and on the Internet.
These can be T-shirts, stickers, mugs but also digital products such as concert videos, scores, unpublished photos, etc.
Although most of your sales will be in concert, always remember to feed the online shop of your artists’ website so as not to lose any opportunity to generate income.
4. Streaming and selling music online
More than ever before in our lives, digital music and streaming are at the heart of funding an artist’s career.
Although these tools are often criticized for the limited margin available to authors and performers, streaming services such as Spotify and online music stores such as iTunes remain essential in the business model of most artists.
So arm yourself with a good online music distributor to make sure your music is wherever your fans are!
5. Give music lessons
Nothing prevents you from monetizing your passion by selling not your art, but your skills.
This is the case, for example, if you teach instrument, singing or whatever else you want (stage presence, creativity, etc.).
This is the choice many musicians make, because of the ease of installation and the safety of this method.
6. Become a session musician
If you are talented enough with an instrument, you can also use your network to play for other artists.
It can be either to appear in concert on their songs, or to play your instrument in the studio on their next album. An excellent way to gain experience and build strong relationships.
7. Composing for other artists
Similarly, if you are a composer, you can write songs for other musicians or directly for films, television or even advertising.
This is the choice many artists have made in order to have a more stable and consistent income once established.
8. Perform on the street
Quite widespread and original, this method is a good way to test these titles in front of an unknown audience and generate a (small) additional income.
Extremely popular in recent years, crowdfunding can be used to finance an album, a tour or a video clip or to pay you through an additional margin.
To do this you will need to run a successful campaign to raise enough funds and take into account all the costs related to the project (rewards, taxes, marketing, remuneration, etc.)
10. The rights to your works
As the songwriter of your music affiliated with an organization that defends your rights, each appearance of your works on radio, television, in concert, on YouTube, on a streaming site, in a public place or otherwise, amounts to a proportionate collection of copyright and/or related rights for you.
So the more your music is heard, the more rights you will gain in an almost passive way.
11. Music in the picture
Similarly, if your music appears in an advertisement, in a TV show, in a movie with your prior consent, you receive rights related to audiovisual synchronization.
Of course, the amount will depend greatly on the production budget and the interest shown in your work. But this activity represents a real opportunity for artists, because it is experiencing a real boom.
Sometimes it happens that if you have built a solid fanbase that corresponds to a company’s target market, the company supports you through sponsorship in order to reach your fans.
This may include financial assistance, logistics, musical instruments, services or free products.
Through this article, I hope that you will have understood that the money is there, but that it is your duty to diversify your activity.