The distribution of webmusic is the last link between your finished album and your fans.The distribution of webmusic now imposes its rules. The music labels and independent artists have always had to go through the best music distributors to make their music accessible to their fans.But thanks to online distribution, power is now in the hands of independent artists looking to grow.
The webmusic sales rose by 17.7% in 2016, representing a total of 7.8 billion US dollars revenue. That’s 50% of the total amount of music revenue. This growth is partly justified by the 60.4% increase in streaming subscriptions.
That’s why it’s important to know how to sell on Spotify , Google Play and iTunes .
As an artist, web distribution has become an essential step in reaching all your potential fans. Smart distribution increases your visibility. This makes your music accessible to all ears. It also allows you to get paid for all the hard work you do to promote your sound.
This guide will give you everything you need to distribute your music digitally.
What is Music Distribution?
The musical distribution is all the way between your music and the listener.
Traditionally, distributors enter into agreements with music labels to sell in stores.
However, distribution has changed the game by blurring the middle ground, allowing artists to directly distribute their music on online shoppingplatforms while retaining 100% of their royalties.
How the Distribution of webmusic Works Today
The goal of digital distribution is to make your music available on iTunes , Spotify , Google Play and other online platforms but also on webmusic stores.
Think of them as digital record stores. Once your music is there, people can listen to it online, buy it, download it. In return, you receive royalties based on where and how your music was listened to.
Like traditional record stores, online music stores receive their catalog directly from digital distribution companies. But instead of sending crates of parcels every week, digital distributors deliver content directly to the online music stores mentioned above.
What could take weeks or even months of transportation and manufacturing, not to mention all the other costs, is now in a few clicks.
The Best Music Distribution Companies
There are a lot of music distribution companies. Keeping all of its royalties is essential. Learn about their commissions and what you commit to before you decide. Some say they do not puncture you, but there are some hidden costs in some cases. Get informed!
- CD Baby
- Ditto Music
- Record Union
- The Orchard (only for labels)
- Awal (only some applications)
We tell you more about how to choose your digital distributor further, continue reading.
The Benefits of Web Music Distribution
The most popular type of music today is digital music. Which makes it a must for any album release. Evolutions in the music industry’s revenues clearly show that digital has taken precedence over everything else. Here are the global revenues of the music industry in 2016 :
- 50% come from the digital
- 34% comes from physical media (CDs, vinyls, cassettes)
- 14% come from performance fees (radio, shows, etc.)
- 2% come synchros (movies and commercials)
So play it strategically. Make your music available where people are used to hanging out: online . You will multiply the chances of reaching them.
Save yourself the cost and hassle of physical distribution – especially for a first outing. Start by building a public and a name with digital outputs and a DIY promotion.
You have to know how to be smart to sell your music online correctly. Choose the cast that will give you back all of your royalties without vices or hidden clauses. It will guarantee you to be paid for what is due to you without giving up the rights to your music. It is not negligible. Because if your next album is better distributed by another company, you’ll be free to end your non- exclusive agreement at any time.
There are also a lot of benefits to digital distribution like recommendation algorithms . These are suggestions that are offered to people based on their listening habits. That’s how we discover new sounds in the digital age! Think of them as bonuses but that’s not what will make your music heard by millions of listeners. That depends only on you!
Now that you know the ins and outs of today’s distro, let’s take a look at the best ways to distribute your music. Here are some steps to follow:
1.Find The Best Music Distribution Company
Ok, your record is ready. You have mixed and mastered . Your visuals are beautiful and neat. You do not hold up anymore, you just want it to come out.
Now you must be asking yourself how you sell your music online.
- The first step is to find the right online distribution platform.
- Familiarize yourself with the big distribution companies
- Evaluate your budget: carefully study the conditions and pricing policies of each distributor. Remember, a distributor is a new professional partnership. Go for the one that will be most beneficial to you. Make sure your distributor fully meets your needs, resources and ambitions.
- Make sure your music is visible
At the time of traditional distribution, the artists had to provide a page that contained all the key information about the album (performer’s name, album title, release date, a little biography, the kind musical, etc.).
The digital equivalent would be metadata . These are all the small descriptions and keywords that allow a better classification to better navigate the web.
Metadata is of crucial importance since the advent of digital distribution. You’ll have to concentrate on it when you release your album, before the distribution. People tend to browse music online depending on the genre of music and your future fans need to be able to find you easily during their research.
Here are the main metadata that we find:
- Name of the interpreter
- Title (from the album or single)
- Release date
- Label name (if applicable)
- Songs titles
- The musical genre
- The composer
- Biography of the artist
- ISRC Codes
Make it short by using everyday words. Make it simple and timeless: avoid, for example, hashtags or buzzwords. The goal is that people can access your music today, but also in 30 years.
- Promo, Promo, Promo
Digital distribution is as important as your own musical promotion. The digital distribution will not take care of the promotion of your album for you, the task comes back to you. Which is a very good thing since you can approach it creatively. The best musical promotions are authentic and basic (there are things that will never change in music).
Make sure the budget allocated to your promotion is consistent. Also keep in mind that the best promotional strategies are often the least expensive, such as talking to your fans, using social media to show how you’re doing, or letting go of small gifts online.
So do your own thing: be active on social media and put yourself on the scene .
Create the buzz around your album before it’s too late. Take a first look at your jam session on Instagram . Streame live live from your studio. Post 30-second snippets of your new songs on SoundCloud .
Your music needs to reach a maximum of listeners. And here’s how to do it:
- Play your songs on the radio
- Make sure to be present on blogs
- Make concerts
- Practice word of mouth
- Prepare remixes and playlists
- Send e-mails, share your inspirations and make the necessary phone calls. You can not escape!
The Distribution Revolution
Web distribution gives the same chance to all artists: “If an artist sells 500 albums or 500,000, he must be housed in the same company with the same level of respect” says the artistic director of EMPIRE . We can only agree.
Benefit from a digital concrete distribution is like having a brilliant CV. This will guarantee you better concerts, better visibility and more bargaining power.
Web distribution is direct access to the ears of your fans. So do it well! Do it numerically!