There's a good chance that you can get paid for your songwriting skills if you know where to find the right opportunities. Writing songs will always be a great way to make money since music, in general, will never go out of style.
Songwriters can earn hundreds, thousands, or millions of dollars from just one song alone.
Writing songs get you earnings that are referred to as royalties that occur whenever your original song is played or performed. The possibilities are endless, but check out these seven options for making money in the songwriting world.
The most common way to get paid as a songwriter is to build up your own clientele of artists, bands, and producers who are in need of writers.
This can be easy if you have networking skills and the ability to win people over with an extensive portfolio of hit songs they can hear to vouch for your work.
Writing in this way is sometimes done as a work-for-hire. Works for hire often give 100% of the rights away to the client, so be sure you are getting paid what you're worth. In some genres, this is referred to as topline writing.
Some writers smartly include royalty splits in their songwriting agreements, but you will have to play around with different methods and see what works best for you and your clients.
Publishing companies are responsible for getting good songs into the hands of established artists and brands. They offer deals to songwriters that they have faith in and who consistently churn out hit songs.
To land a publishing deal, you will need to have an awe-inspiring portfolio.
In order to showcase your songwriting skills, make sure to have your songs recorded. If you're going after major publishing companies, you will need to have high-quality demos to give them the best representation of how hot your song can be once performed by the intended singer or band.
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Another common way to make money with your songwriting efforts is to create and perform original music.
Many songwriters are often gifted with the ability to sing, but the key here is to also be good with marketing and promotion. In order to get paid for your music, it must be exposed to thousands of people.
As an artist or band, it's always a bonus to write your own material in order to get the most income from your song releases.
To take it a step further, if you don't have a publisher, you can create a song publishing company of your own to get access to even more of the royalties generated from a successful song.
Similar to publishing companies, you can get paid as a songwriter if you land a deal with a licensing company.
These companies connect song creators to brands that need background music. These brands can be TV shows, movies, advertisements, and much more.
You can get an advantage in this field if you are a producer or an instrumentalist, on top of being a songwriter. Licensing companies are often looking for complete and original productions that come from one song creator.
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Similar to works-for-hire, where you can write for singers and bands, you can create songs for small businesses in need of jingles or intros.
Many smaller businesses would rather work with a writer directly instead of using expensive middlemen like licensing and publishing companies.
Once you are an established writer for small business jingles, you can expand to larger brands and earn a ton of money with jingles that can be played on radio, TV, and popular streaming companies like Youtube.
Speaking of Youtube, parents love going to this platform and finding songs to entertain and positively impact their kid's growth.
As a songwriter and possibly a singer and producer as well, you can get into creating original kid-friendly material. While this market is growing, it's still not as crowded as the market for songs aimed at adults and teens.
A cool way to make money in songwriting is to simply enter your songs into songwriting contests.
If you're amazingly gifted, you have an advantage over the thousands of submissions that get sent to popular recurring contests like The John Lennon Songwriting Contest and The International Songwriting Competition.
These contests have first-prize awards as high as $50,000 with trusted business coordinators that have been paying songwriters for decades.
Take a chance and enter your best work to see if you can win a cash prize. Just make sure your songs are really great songs!
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Connect with fellow songwriters, musicians, producers, and industry professionals, and not just in work-for-hire scenarios. By collaborating with others, you can tap into new creative perspectives, expand your network, and increase your chances of landing lucrative songwriting opportunities.
Attend industry events, join songwriter associations, and participate in online communities to meet like-minded individuals and build meaningful relationships.
Collaboration not only opens doors to new opportunities but also exposes you to different genres and styles, broadening your range as a songwriter.
Remember, the music industry thrives on relationships, so nurture connections, collaborate generously, and watch your songwriting career flourish. Together, you can create something truly extraordinary.
All in all, becoming a paid songwriter is an exciting journey filled with endless possibilities. Whether you write songs for artists, pursue publishing deals, perform your own music, or explore licensing opportunities, there are various avenues to monetize your talent.
Remember, building a strong portfolio, showcasing your skills through high-quality demos, and networking with industry professionals are essential steps in establishing yourself as a successful songwriter.
So, don't hesitate to take risks, continuously improve your craft, and submit your best work to seize opportunities that can lead to financial rewards and artistic fulfillment.
Keep writing those amazing songs, and chase your dreams!
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As a session singer, writer, and producer that has worked with over 300 clients to provide high-quality jingles, singles, and features, Yona spends her time creating and marketing new music and helpful resources for creators. Check out Yona’s latest releases on her Spotify, her Youtube and share if you like it!
If you are in need of singer, songwriter or song producer services, see what Yona Marie can offer you on her services page.