Making money doing what you love is never easy. Most have to have at least one other job while they have their passion as a side job or even just as a hobby. There are a few things that you can do to help make money with your music, whether it’s writing for yourself or being a song writer for someone else. It’s always good to keep your mind open when trying to make money. Try something different and exciting that will get peoples’ attentions and make them want to support you. I will be talking about a few things that might help, but always think of new and exciting ways to generate money, especially since it’s very easy to download music for free.
Selling merchandise is a great way to create money. Everyone wants to show off their support for bands that they love or for bands that they just found out about. They will wear shirts and pins to shows and on the street, which will get others around them interested in checking you out and will mean that they will purchase things as well. It’s very easy to buy and sell merchandise anywhere. You can sell at shows, but you can also sell online in many different ways. There’s always social media you can sell on as long as you have a PayPal account, multiple websites that help you sell online, as well as selling on your own website.
Live shows are always great to get money at. As noted above, you can sell your merchandise at shows, but you can also make money in other ways. Some venues will pay you for playing there, others will let you set up a tip jar on stage where anyone at the show can donate money while you’re performing. You can also put a tip jar on your merchandise table for anyone who would like to donate more money or still show monetary support if they cannot purchase anything.
Another great form of “live shows” are to do it online. It’s not exactly “live” but you will be live streaming and performing live for fans. Streaming sites, such as StageIt, will let you set a price for a live streaming a concert and your fans can pay to see you perform from all over the world.
There are multiple forms online to have fans donate money to your music. Things like Kickstarter and IndieGoGo will let people donate money to your cause if they feel connected to it. Sites like Patreon help artists support each other and have fans support them as well. Patreon usually has it where you have something to give to the person who donated the money. Doesn’t need to be anything big, just something small to say thank you. I believe it’s always good to give back to those who help out. If you can do that while they’re donating, it would help so much.
Having something extra for fans will make them more excited about purchasing things. You can have certain songs be free, but if they want to be able to download a special video from the band or an exclusive song, then they’d have to pay for it. Make it seem special. Having a few songs free for listeners to check out and download before purchasing the album will make them able to listen to you and want more.
A lot of bands don’t care for doing cover shows and would rather play their own music, but most (if not all) bands who do cover gigs will get paid. Most places would like to hire performers that sound or can at least perform popular songs. It gets the crowd excited and want to people to show up. It may not be the best o most popular around performers to do, but it is a good way to get some money and sometimes even be heard by someone in the industry.
YouTube is a great way to get money and to be heard. A lot of venues and even labels go to YouTube to see what you’re about. It shows how many people are listening to you, what you can creatively do with the music in terms of writing and music videos if you have any, and they will be able to see your music persona and how people react to it. YouTube also has ads that will generate money overtime someone watches one of your videos. You can decide which video you’d like the ads to be on and will generate more income. Yes, the ads are annoying, but it’s not going to stop anyone from listening to you. Performers all over have gotten signed thanks to YouTube and many that haven’t been signed yet are getting paid through the ads.
Having someone sponsor you is a great way to have money. Whoever is sponsoring you will donate money to whatever you need, whether it be to go on tour, buy new merchandise, help with recording, or getting instruments. You may not always be able to use the money as you want, but it will help pay for the important “business” things so that when you do make money from sales or anything, that will be your money and you won’t have to worry about business expenses. Sponsors also make it easier to get booked at shows and at festivals. You both can help each other out and booking agents will notice.
There are plenty of ways to make money doing what you love. You just have to keep an open mind and be creative. These were a few ideas that may help, but should only be a starting point for trying to make money with your music. Some are not as popular as others and some are very easy to do. You just have to find out what works best for you and your music, as well as for you fans.