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Digital Music Distribution: What Artists Should Know

You open up Spotify and start scrolling through your Discover Weekly playlist when you stumble upon new artists you like. You eagerly click on their profile to learn more about them and are surprised that they are all independent artists not aligned with record labels. How is that possible? Three words- Digital Music Distribution. Let’s find out more about it.

What is Digital Music Distribution?

Digital music distribution is simply the process of distributing music files electronically. This can be done via email, social media, or even directly from an artist’s website. This type of distribution circumvents the record producers and directly reaches the audience through various streaming channels like Apple Music, Spotify, Amazon Music, etc., allowing the artist complete control of their work.

 Why Does an Artist Need Digital Music Distribution?

As an artist, you know how important it is to get your music out there. But with so many different platforms there to distribute your music through, it can be tough to know where to start. That’s where digital music distribution comes in. Artists need Digital music distribution to:

  • Help Release their Music on Various Channels

Undoubtedly, you want your music to reach as many people as possible. The traditional way to do this was to sign a record deal and have them distribute your music to radio stations, TV networks, and music stores. However, this process was costly and time-consuming, and there was no guarantee that your music would reach your intended audience. With digital music distribution, you can directly release your music to channels like Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music, and Pandora, making them instantaneously available to millions of people. A digital music distribution company essentially duplicates an artist’s sound file, and metadata to all the major streaming platforms in one go, thereby reaching a global audience. In addition, digital music distribution is much cheaper than traditional music releases, and you can keep the entirety of your sales profits.

Additionally, many digital distributors offer promotional tools and services to help artists reach an even wider audience. For example, some distributors can help secure placement on popular streaming platforms or get featured on high-traffic music blogs. In short, digital music distribution provides a powerful avenue through which artists can get their music out there and start building a following. 

  • Pays their Royalties

As a musician, you rely on royalties to make a living. But collecting those royalties can be a real headache. That’s where digital music distributors come in. By handling the complexities of royalty collection and payment, they can help you in claiming royalties and get the money you’re owed quickly and easily. In most cases, you must upload your music to their platform, and they’ll take care of the rest. They’ll track plays, collect royalties, and pay you out regularly. 

  • Promotes their music

Choosing the right digital music distributor for your music release is important. A good distributor can help support and promote your music and get it in front of the right people. They can assist with campaigning, chart registration, and playlisting, among other things. By aligning yourself with a reputable distributor, you can increase your chances of success in the music industry. Distributors can also help you promote your music through social media and online marketing, giving you a wider reach and helping you grow your fan base. In short, using a digital distributor can be a great way to reach new audiences and promote your music.

 Does Music Distribution Cost Artists Anything? 

In the past, artists had to fork out thousands of dollars to get their music onto streaming platforms and into the hands of listeners. However, there are now several companies that offer affordable music distribution services. For example, DistroKid only charges $19.99 per year for an unlimited number of releases. Even unsigned artists can get their music onto popular streaming platforms without breaking the bank. So, while there are now more affordable options available, it still costs money to get your music out there. However, suppose you’re serious about pursuing a career in music. In that case, investing in your future is important, and getting your music into the hands of as many people as possible is critical. 

Best Digital Music Distributors

There are a lot of great music distribution companies out there, and it can be hard to know which one is right for you. Here are some examples of the best digital distribution companies 

  1. Distro Kid: DistroKid is a distribution company based in New York that can upload your music to all the major platforms. It also allows artists to retain 100% of the royalties.
  1. CD Baby: CD Baby was founded by Derek Sivers. Since then, it has successfully launched the careers of many independent musicians. It comprises two plans, the pro and the basic, which allow musicians to upload unlimited songs for a year when subscribed.
  1. Ditto Kid: Ditto Music is a UK-based music distribution company that provides tools to help promote and sell your music and offer a percentage of sales back to the artist. The distribution of Koopa’s song Borrow, Blag, and Steal was Ditto’s major achievement.

So there you have it! A guide to digital music distribution. By following this guide, you should be able to easily navigate the digital music landscape and get your music out there.