Sorry it’s been so long since my last post here, it’s been kind of busy. I went on vacation at the beginning of October for a week – went to Minneapolis, MN; dope city, good food.. – and then had a lot of projects to catch up on.
But I’m back for another dope music marketing post for you. Today we’re talking about selling your music (MP3s and CDs) in stores around world
Selling Music – Should It Be Your Main Goal?
I know you want to read about getting your music in stores and selling a ton of CDs, but… I have to say something first.
Most of us music artists think that to be successful we’re going to have to sell thousands of CDs or MP3s. We think that’s how we’re going to make our money.
And yea it’s possible, but it’s not likely. The fact is, music is so freely available that most people will never buy music again. And if you’re trying to fight the people, you won’t end up too well.
The new music business is about selling the musical experience. That usually means playing live, but it can also mean selling “the life.” (e.g. selling your lifestyle through music merchandise, etc.) So don’t limit yourself to just thinking in terms of CDs or MP3s sold.
On The Other Hand…
Having your music in stores in case someone does want to buy it is an important part of the music game. So, don’t neglect this part either.
Music Distribution (Music Distro) – What You Need To Know
Music distribution is the process of getting your music stocked into all of the different stores that sell music. It can happen two ways – you can be self distributed (i.e. using a distribution service), or you can sign a distribution deal with a major or independent music distributer.
Most independent music artists that are just starting out will probably use a distribution service because a lot of distribution companies want you to have sold X number of copies on your own – with proof. Or they will want to see that you have a serious following that would be willing to buy your music.
Music Distribution Services
So what exactly is a music distribution service? It’s a company that is willing to take on any music project and distribute it to different music stores. That means any artist, even beginner artists, can get their music into stores worldwide.
There are two companies I like to recommend when it comes to music distro: TuneCore and CDBaby. There are other companies out there, but I can only recommend these two because I don’t know much about the others.
There are some differences between these companies that is going to affect your decision of which to choose.
TuneCore (affiliate link) is a digital only distribution platform. That means that they do not distribute your physical CDs to retail stores. But they will get your digital audio files into every digital music store imaginable – including iTunes, Amazon, Napster, Spotify, Pandora, MP3.com and a ton of others.
It costs $9.99 to distribute a single and about $49.99 to distribute a full album. It’s worth the money even just so you can say “Yea you can buy my music on iTunes.” Trust me – it’s nice.
You just have to sign up to TuneCore for an account, upload your mastered tracks (Oh yea, make sure the music you plan to sell is professionally mixed and mastered), and fill in all of the details.
Once you make payment they handle the rest.
Usually within 48 hours, your music will start showing up in different stores. And then you can send all your supporters to their favorite music stores to cop your dope ass music.
I’ve never personally used this service, but know people who have and they love it. I’ll probably use TuneCore to distribute the next Lyrical Militant release.
Click Here To Get Your Music Into Stores With TuneCore.
CDBaby is another really nice music distribution service. The major difference between these guys and TuneCore is that CDBaby will do physical CD distribution too.
So if you wanted to sell CDs (don’t hold your breath…) you could get them on special order at places like HMV and Best Buy. The Lyrical Militant album “Prelude To Revolution” was distributed through CDBaby. It was a pretty painless process.
The reason I want to go with TuneCore for my next release is because CDBaby (even though they’re the same price as TuneCore), you have to pay every year. With TuneCore it’s a one-time fee as far as I know, and they hit pretty much the same stores.
The other good things about CDBaby, is they have their own store where they sell MP3s and CDs and they work with a company to try and get music licensed for film and TV. But for the next release, I still want to try out TuneCore.
Click Here To Get Your Music Distributed Through CDBaby
Cool, Now What?
Cool, so now you got your stuff into stores. But getting your music into stores is just part of the battle. Now that people can find your music somewhere, you have to help point them in the right direction. This is where music marketing and promotion comes in.
Without proper marketing, even the best music can go unheard. There’s a hell of a lot of people out there making music, and you need to find the best way for you to stand out, above the crowd. Music marketing is a huge area that has a lot of different aspects to it.
This post is already a hell of a lot longer than I wanted it to be, so I’m going to leave it at that. If you have any questions or tips of your own, leave them in the comments below. And if you like this post, please share it around.