I discuss building your online music career and growing your fanbase often.
But as the saying goes, "followers don't necessarily mean royalties."
In other words...
Large Fanbase ≠ Sustainable Income
There's more to creating a successful online music career than just accumulating a large following...
You also need to be able to monetize it.
And there are some notable examples that illustrate this exact point.
For instance, back in 2019, there was an influencer with 2 million followers on social media.
Because he had such a massive following, he decided to launch his own merch.
Invested in professional equipment, hired marketers, and released it to his followers.
But when the merch launched...
He wasn't able to sell the minimum number of orders needed to cover his costs.
Now, contrast that with a lesser-known music producer I spoke with recently.
He's making around $1.5M a year from just 13k followers on social media.
And I've seen producers do even more with a smaller following...
That's why it's crucial to incorporate "Monetization Moments" into your content creation process as early as possible...
Because if you don't, you could unintentionally build an audience that won't support your music financially.
In this post, I'm going to share how you can integrate Monetization Moments into your own content creation process to start generating income from your online music career.
If you apply what I share with you, not only will you likely see an immediate boost in your revenue...
You'll also position yourself to grow your income exponentially as your fanbase grows.
Before we dive into the specifics, let's first remind ourselves of our overarching goal.
We're trying to "convert" listeners from being passive followers on social media to engaged fans who actively support our music financially.
Now, it's important to note that when I say "monetization moments"...
I don't necessarily mean selling something every single time.
Monetization moments are actually more about making an "ask" of your audience.
Because we want to turn our audience from passive consumers of our music, to actively engaged fans.
Why is this important?
Well, people subconsciously develop patterns in their minds to help them navigate the overwhelming amount of content online.
And if you're not asking anything of your followers, you're essentially training them to only expect free music from you.
Practically speaking, this means that when you eventually do decide to ask something from them...
The response will likely be poor because they've been conditioned to only consume your music for free.
Additionally, regularly making "asks" can help filter out casual listeners and freebie seekers from your audience.
It serves as a way to ensure the quality of your fans is high, and that they are genuinely interested in supporting your music financially.
The very first "ask" you want to make of your audience is asking them to join a platform you own such as your newsletter.
As long as your fans are only following you on social media, you're at risk of losing them.
You may have heard of musicians losing access to their social media accounts before.
But that's not the only reason why you should prioritize building your newsletter.
Gaining access to someone's inbox increases the chances that they'll actually see your music
Because you’re competing with just a fraction of the competition that you have on social media.
Also people have a different frame of mind when in their inbox - they’re typically there to engage or even "do business."
Whereas people by default go on social media to be entertained and to mindlessly consume.
And as it stands, email is still one of the most profitable channels you can invest in.
There are many businesses that do 30%-40% of their monthly revenue from email.
I know I just spent a minute harping on why you should convert your social media audience to your newsletter...
But another Monetization Moment with your following is getting them to engage with you on other platforms.
The reality is, we're all still using social media to build our personal brands...
And you will ultimately benefit from growing your following across all your channels.
The growth helps get you to gain traction with the algorithms - which if you have your monetization strategy dialed in - means more money in your bank account.
Also, you’re asking your followers to take an action, so we’re still reinforcing the back-and-forth component.
Making Money From Your Audience
Now, let’s focus on ways you can actually make money from your audience.
This might sound obvious, but to make money you need an offer to sell them.
You’d be surprised how many music producers don’t have any offers and wonder why they aren’t making money.
And while there are a lot of different things you can sell (we’ll get to those options in a minute), I want to focus on first are the different “tiers” of products.
Here are the ones I’m going to talk about today:
Low Ticket ($0 to around $497) - Ex: Albums, Packs, Merch, Tickets, Beats Subscription (typically lower price point, renews monthly) - Ex: Teaching, Behind The Scenes. High Ticket ($497-$4,997) - Ex: Exclusive Beats, Selling to venue, Sync for business
Now I personally think that every music producer should have products from each of these tiers.
Because you want to be able to offer your audience products that best suit their needs based on:
Where they are on their music production journey
(I’ve heard many stories of people buying a low-ticket product and immediately converting to an high-ticket offer because they just wanted to get to know the music producer more before signing on with them.)
Low-ticket products and subscriptions are great because they’re a low barrier to entry.
High-ticket offers typically have great margins, and also provide fantastic value to the buyer - but they can be harder to sell.
Subscription products are fantastic for bringing in guaranteed recurring revenue, however like the low-ticket products, you have to have A LOT of buyers to make "good" money from them.
If you’re just starting off, I recommend having both a low ticket and a Tier I high ticket offer.
Now it’s time to actually create your offer.
In terms of what to offer, there are many options available.
Some of these include:
Albums (Digital & Physical)
The possibilities are endless, but what’s most important is to find the product that best aligns with your brand and audience.
And there's no better way to find out than to start making offers and find out what resonates best with your following.
How Often Should You “Sell"
When it comes to how often you should "sell," it is important to find a balance.
Some music producers' businesses are built on a "churn-and-burn" model where they're only concerned about maximizing revenue in the short term...
However the biggest music brands have built real relationships with their customers and audience, and while their growth trajectory might not have been as fast...
They have longevity on their side, and will ultimately reach higher revenue levels that the cash-grab businesses.
That being said, I think that as long as you’re still providing valuable content on a regular basis…
You can sell a lot more than you might realize.
I recommend promoting your newsletter daily.
When selling products, aim to promote at least one offer every 3-4 days.
If you have multiple products, you can spend a week focusing on each product and then switch to the next one the following week.
This also serves as great content inspiration as well.
You can always dial things in with time.
What’s most important is that you’re making an offer, and monetizing your audience correctly.
Did you find this framework useful?
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