As a recording musician, your mind likely goes straight to music sales, streaming revenue, and publishing royalties when it comes to earning a living. However, there are other, lesser-known ways to earn – including a trio of largely passive income streams.
Passive income is now a vital source of revenue for musicians across the board, including fellow artist Samantha Foss. To demonstrate, a closer look at the current landscape and earning potential for new and existing artists through passive income follows. It’s a list that starts with Samantha’s favorite source – fan subscriptions.
Musician Samantha Foss’s first and favorite source of passive income is fan subscriptions. Fan subscriptions are a fantastic way to boost your income as an artist. Revenue comes directly from those who follow your work and wish to contribute toward it. Entirely separate from sales, streaming, and royalties, it’s a dependable way to earn regular passive income.
In essence, it’s a means of leveraging your art from another angle. Most musicians treat subscriptions like a fan club, offering behind-the-scenes access to their work and creative processes. All types of content creators can use fan subscriptions. Yet, it’s a particularly valuable proposition for musicians and one that’s all too often overlooked.
Patreon is a great option, especially for those just starting out. Their flexible platform also has an abundance of solutions tailored explicitly toward musicians.
Next, Samantha Foss explores media monetization – something that shouldn’t be overlooked or mistaken for traditional publishing royalties. Media monetization allows musicians to earn truly passive income. That’s because it’s a source of revenue that’s generated every time someone uses your work in media like YouTube videos.
For example, YouTube videos are largely outside the scope of old-school publishing royalties. That’s especially true for independent artists and those seeking one or more means of passive income.
Various options exist for musicians when it comes to media monetization. However, if you’re already part of an online distributor for your music, they may have a ready-to-go solution. That includes media monetization and so-called sync licensing, so be sure to inquire with your existing distributor, if applicable, in the first instance.
And last but not least, Samantha Foss picks her third among passive income options for artists’ affiliate programs. Such programs represent an alternative source of additional revenue for musicians. Although not necessarily aimed at artists in all cases, it’s a versatile passive income channel that works just as well for musicians as it does for anyone else.
Tailored toward your career, they’re a great way to earn extra income independent of your music catalog. Amazon is an excellent place to start and allows you to make affiliate commissions by recommending things like your favorite microphone or headphones. More recently, musicians specifically can also earn additional commission by linking to their own tracks on Amazon Music!
Meanwhile, similar options are further available from Apple Music and Deezer, each of which now has a dedicated affiliate program for musicians like yourself.