Music distribution has changed dramatically over the years. In the past, you’d hear a song on the radio. If you liked it you’d go to your local record store and buy the album or the single.
I got an iPod for my birthday from my daughters in 2008. What a wonderful new toy! I spent weeks and hundreds of dollars building my digital music library. I revelled in having thousands of songs at my fingertips wherever I went. Because it was so convenient I developed a relationship with many old favourites and relished the new music I sampled.
I stopped buying CDs, preferring the convenience of digital files so I completely understood when my friends asked where they could buy a digital copy of my CD, Buffalo Beans and Bluebells.
I quickly discovered that I couldn’t list directly on iTunes or many of the other music services for that matter. These systems aren’t set up for the budding artist with only a CD or two under their belts, like me. You see, unless you have a large repertoire of albums, they force you into using a music distributor who will happily take a share of your royalties for their trouble. I got busy and started researching online.
Luckily, I was able to find reviews for many. I was dismayed at what I read. The biggest complaint from artists seemed to be the inability to reliably collecting money from these distributors.
Then I found Distrokid, whose reviews were stellar. For only $19.99 per year, you can upload unlimited albums and songs. Distrokid distributes them to iTunes, Spotify, Apple Music, Pandora, Amazon, Google Play and over 150 other stores and streaming services. You keep 100% of your royalties. You can even legally use cover songs by paying $12 per year per song. (It’s important to me that other musicians are paid for their work too.)
The process for loading your music is straight forward. I had a small glitch because my producer had loaded my album for me as a favour. Because Distrokid doesn’t allow duplicates, I was unable to get those songs listed in my name. So I asked my producer to remove my files. It took a few days but I was able to load the album without a hitch.
If you have a CD, it’s imperative you provide your customers with choice for how they purchase that CD. Distrokid is an easy way to reach your fans and collect the royalties you deserve. One final tip: Remember to update your website with links to your digital music.
Disclaimer: We did not receive any fees or proceeds in any form for recommending Distrokid. They’re just a company doing it right and one we’re happy we are getting to know.
S2 Seminars, Grow Exponentially – use both sides of your brain!, is a partnership between Shelley Goldbeck and Susan Cramer. To learn more about running your small business, contact us today.