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Pond 5 Review (Where I License Music Online)

I sell music online on several websites, but in this Pond 5 review, I want to share why it is the best sites for licensing your music. And the only stock music site I’d wholly recommend for musicians.

(Note that this is a referral link, meaning I get a commission if you purchase anything from the Pond 5 - but I don’t not get a referral for recommending that you sign up as an artist. It's just my honest belief it's the best site for folks new to licensing)

First, a little background on my experiences selling music on Pond 5 before jumping into this Pond 5 music licensing review. I joined Pond 5 around April 2015. I licensed my first royalty free song, an energetic classic blues rock intro, for $15. However, I've raised the prices now that I actually understand the value of my songs. Sales slowly trickled in and started building from there.

Since then, I’ve made over a $1,000 selling music on Pond 5. Lately, I've been averaging...

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How Music Licensing Pays My Bills

What if I told you that music pays my bills?

Imagine if you could pay your bills as a musician through the money you earned selling your music?

Or if you made enough money selling music to donate to your favorite charity?

Imagine if you had a little extra money left over at the end of the month to buy a pitcher for your friends?

Well here’s how. Licensing your music is not rocket science. It’s earned me over $10,000, and I’m just an average guy working part time making music in his living room.

Want to learn how you can money on the side with your music? Take my free course!

All you’ve got to do is take the first step.

Honestly, that’s the hardest part. I struggled so much with whether or not I should license my music. I was worried about whether it was good enough. I was worried about being a sellout. I was lazy.

I was scared.

Since I started selling music online last year, I’m now able to consistently pay my bills for my major expenses each...

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Licensing Music on AudioJungle Review (How to Sell Music on AudioJungle)

It was the best of sites, it was the worst of sites. It was the most popular of sites, and the stingiest of sites. It was the most creative of sites, and the most dickish of sites.

Ok, pardon my Dickensian introduction.

I got my first sales ever on Audio Jungle, with this chill dub song. I was super, super stoked. In fact, I’ve sold it repeatedly. So Audio Jungle has a special place in my heart as my first. Thank you, Audio Jungle.

But like many "firsts," that special place is also full of a lot of frustration and pain.

This AudioJungle review is going to focus on my experiences (trying) to sell music on AudioJungle. While I think it offers opportunities to earn money through stock music licensing, for beginners I recommend other sites, especially Pond 5. If you're interested in how AudioJungle compares to my favorite site, Pond 5, check out this article.

Just a note – Audio Jungle does not give me any fees for referring artists. This is my honest to goodness...

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How Musicians Earn Passive Income

Ready to learn the secrets to how musicians earn passive income these days? Passive income used to be the cornerstone of the music biz.

When you think about the golden age of the music industry, musicians would earn passive income all the time. It's why Paul McCartney and Michael Jackson became billionaires. 

And it can be summed up in one, simple, magic word: ROYALTIES

Think about it earning passive income as a musician  like this:

  • Every time a band sells an album or has a song broadcast, it gets paid. Even on stuff recorded 50 years ago. That’s how musicians earn passive income. However, with the advent of music streaming, some of these traditional types of revenues are fading away.
  • In contrast, any time a band goes out and plays a show, it gets paid directly for the active work it puts into that show. This ain’t passive income. Anyone tearing down gear at 2am knows that.

Now, that's slightly simplified, but it's the basics. Keep reading to see how...

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5 Secrets for a Song that Sells - Music Licensing Tips!

If you’re interested in licensing your music, here are some secrets for a song that sells! Check out these five simple tips that will make your songs instantly more marketable to start earning a passive income by selling your music.

Watch this free video to learn how to license your music and put these 5 secrets into effect!

1st Secret for a Song that Sells – Keep it Short!

Most successful songs used in licensing are short. Keep it around 30 seconds. Usually, the buyers of stock music are looking to establish a mood quickly and move on.

Just watch HGTV, the Discovery Channel, A&E, whatever. On those shows, songs play for 5-10 seconds before moving on.

Same with commercials, Youtube videos, and corporate scenes. Most buyers aren’t looking for an extensive montage.

2nd Secret for a Song that Sells – Tell a Story

Good production music tells a story efficiently in its short time span. You should force yourself to write a beginning, middle and end...

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How to Write a Song: Intros

If you want to learn how to write a song, the first thing you’ll need is a *strong* intro. As the saying goes, “you never get a second chance to make a first impression,” and that’s as true in song writing as it is in anything else. In fact, as I’ve said in my tips for tips to write a song that sells, having a strong intro is one of the major factors in success.

This is one of the key things I reveal in this free video on how to license music.

Just think about it. People’s attention spans are getting shorter and shorter. There’s literally 1000’s of songs being uploaded every day. If people don’t like what they hear in the first few seconds, they may not wait around until the better parts of your songs.

That’s why you’ve got to learn how to write an intro to your songs.

Now I’m going to give you guys a template with 5 different styles of intro you can use for writing that killer intro.

These techniques...

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2 Easy Song Licensing Business Models

When it comes to selling stock music (what is stock music?), there are 2 easy song licensing business models that have been successful for countless musicians. The first involves directly pitching your songs to music supervisors. The second, and even easier, way to license your songs involves uploading them directly to websites that serve as the middleman between you and the buyers.

The first method is great for established musicians. But if you're like me (and still learning the ropes), you should start at the second method as you cut your teeth in the music industry.

1st Easy Song Licensing Business Model - Using a Publishing Company

In the first method of song licensing, you develop a network of contacts (or purchase a directory) of music supervisors and publishing companies that are looking for music.

Music supervisors are the end users on projects (let's someone working on a TV show looking for a specific type of song for a scene). 


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Music Licensing: The 3 Types of Rights

If you're interested in music licensing, there are three main types of rights: Mechanical, Synchronization, and Broadcast. There's also a fourth type of right, print rights, but those aren't as common unless you have a big hit.

Now music licensing is super complicated, but I'm hoping to explain it in simple terms. These types of rights are all a little different, and all require different organizations to collect the money for you. Also note, this is not legal advice, just one musician talking to another about the types of rights we're entitled to with our music.

Now, each type of right leads to a corresponding royalty. Basically, as musicians we trade away part of our right, let's say to synchronize our song with a video, in exchange for money and publicity.

So let's dig into the types of rights for music from the perspective of royalties, cause getting paid is always more fun.

The first type of right is to mechanical royalties. This is basically your right to get paid every...

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How to Sell Stock Music (Start Licensing Your Music Today!)

I recently did a wonderful interview on how to sell stock music with Jesse from Sync My Music. In this 30+ minute video on how to sell stock music, Jesse and I discuss how stock music libraries are different from other types of production music libraries, how anyone can get started selling stock music, and also what I have planned for the future.

Check out this free mini-course to learn how you can license your first song in five days.

Even though Jesse has been making a full-time living licensing his production music through libraries, he is now seriously considering putting his "rejects" on to a site like Pond 5 (affiliate link).

The Best Stock Music Site

It's really not that hard to do get started licensing your stock music. I had no idea what I was doing three years ago when I started trying to license my music. Also, I made TONS of mistakes. But I've muddled through with some hard work (the key to success at anything) and a commitment to investing in my growing...

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One of My Worst Songs Made Me $200+ in Licensing Revenue

Would you believe that one of my worst written, worst produced, worst mixed songs - one that uses mainly loops - has generated over $200 and continues to sell?

I'm as shocked as you. 

Update 5/22/18: I just earned $1,800 from this song on back end licensing!!

But it turns out there are at least 3 secret reasons why this song has done so well, which I'll share in a minute. 

First, though, you really ought to take a listen to this little gem.

Originally, I never intended this song for licensing. I was just making a demo song to experiment with mid/side processing. As the song shows, that experiment failed.

However, I accidentally exported the song and uploaded it to some licensing sites with a batch of other files.

When it came time to start tagging the song with keywords and descriptions, I thought, what the hell.

Now, to begin with I recommend writing and recording high quality songs!

The point of this example is just to show that if you know what you're doing when...

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How To Make Money as Musician by Pursuing Your Passion

This 5-day mini course will show you exactly how to launch a music licensing side hustle so that you can finally get paid for your music!