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Where To Submit Music For Film And TV

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Register With A Performance Rights Organization

FLYING OVER NETHERLANDS (4K UHD) – Soothing Music With Wonderful Nature Videos For Relaxation On TV

When your music is used on TV or film, a licensing fee isnt the only income youll receive. You can also make a certain amount of performance royalties anytime your song is aired.

This is where a Performance Rights Organization comes in. Its their job to collect royalties on behalf of songwriters and rights holders, then pay the monies to the correct parties.


So, if you want to make sure youre making as much money as possible from your music, you need to register with a PRO right away. The three major PROs in the United States are ASCAP, BMI and SESAC. In Canada its an organization known as SOCAN. For our international friends, you can track down your countrys PRO here.

We delve a little deeper into this topic in a recent interview with Paul Stillo from SOCAN.

Your Metadata Matters For Sync Licensing

A music supervisor or a member of CD Babys sync team will often search for music for sync by using terms related to genre, tempo, similar artists, instrumentation, theme, lyrics, and vibe.

Thats why its crucial during the submission process to complete all the information about your release, including:

  • Genres
  • Language
  • and more

We also employ a sonic analysis tool to generate additional metadata for each song in our catalog, including BMPs, key and mode, mood, and more.

When it comes to words, our partners at Musixmatch allow you to enter your lyrics into their system so theyre available on numerous platforms, including Spotify, Instagram, and Amazon Music.

This kind of information helps us locate the right music for the right project so take your time and be accurate. Dont associate your music with a sounds-like artist just because you think theyre trendy choose artists you ACTUALLY sound like.

Licenses And Rights Holders

Lets dive into the legality of sync licensing, as it can be a bit to get your head around. There are the rights that you need to be aware of:

Master and composition rights This is for the benefit of artists and applies to the song itself. The master right is owned by the individual who recorded the track, and the composition belongs to the owner of the lyrics/musical composition. How these are split is decided between the parties involved in a songs production. If an indie artist both wrote and recorded the track then they own 100% of the rights. If youre signed to a label, the label may possess the master rights. Once a song is created it is protected by copyright. Many artists publish their music with a rights organisation in order to protect it.

Publishing rights Usually an artist will use a rights organisation to publish their music. Its publishers who, as a supervisor, you will have the most interaction with regarding music. You ask to use a track by an artist under their representation, they talk to the artist, and the two of you negotiate the sync license and a one-off sync fee. Sync royalties are earned when your track is used alongside a visual, these are then paid to the artist via the publisher.

The best way to learn these are to get cracking and start those negotiations with the rights holders. At the end of the day, theyre people too just talk to them about what you need.

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How To Get Your Music In Films And TV

There are more TV channels and movies popping up all the time. If that wasnt enough, Netflix has been creating more and more original content for their platform.

There are more opportunities for you to get your music placed in movies and TV shows than ever, assuming you have the goods music supervisors are looking for.

Even so, theres no easy button when it comes to getting your music licensed. If you dont have a team working on your behalf, its going to require focus and dedication on your part. We’ve more details in The Academy, but this below guide should get you started.

But first, if it’s your aim to do music professionally, you’ll want to check out our free ebook while it’s still available:

Free eBook: Discover how real independent musicians like you are making $4,077 – $22,573+ monthly via Youtube, let me know where to send the details:

Best Music Licensing Companies 2022 That Can Get Your Music Placed

How To: Submit your Music to TV and Film Industries

Licensing and placements are a major source of income for musicians. Some musicians live exclusively off the royalties they earn through strategic placements.

Although it does get talked about a lot, its surprising that it doesnt get talked about more. Even for independents, licensing represents a good opportunity.

You might think that major label artists have the upper hand but thats not necessarily the case. If youre tenacious and have the right connections, you can get your music placed in media too.

But first, if it’s your aim to do music professionally, you’ll want to check out our free ebook while it’s still available:

Free eBook: Discover how real independent musicians like you are making $4,077 – $22,573+ monthly via Youtube, let me know where to send the details:

  • Best Music Licensing Companies That Can Get Your Music Placed, Final Thoughts
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    Retitling Songs For Sync Licensing

    If youre using CD Baby for sync licensing, you dont need to know all the nitty gritty details about how sync deals are structured.

    But there is one common practice in sync licensing called retitling that you should know about.

    Retitling is when the entity pitching your song registers your composition under a different name with a performing rights organization so they can collect performance royalties from TV plays in perpetuity. Im not here to say thats good or bad outright, but it can lead to confusion it also means youre not going to earn what you otherwise would if you retained full ownership of your publishing rights.

    CD Baby will NOT retitle your music if we get a sync placement for you.

    What Are Licensing & Placement Opportunities

    You may have come here without knowing what the terms licensing or placements even mean.

    Youll be glad to know that we arent on a different wavelength. These are simply the technical terms used to describe the process of placing an artists music in films and TV.

    Licensing refers to the legal or licensed use of copyrighted music in media. Under current laws, copyright owners must be fairly compensated for the authorized use of their work in various contexts. With music, the most obvious ones are film and TV.

    Compensation for the use of your music in visual media can vary. If its an independent film or a home-brew video, you shouldnt expect much .

    But licensing and placements can also be huge for artists, and you may have even heard about some success stories. Getting placed in the right TV show can mean earning royalties for months, even years to come, particularly if re-runs are airing all the time.

    This is also what makes licensing and placements a competitive field for artists. Many musicians dream of generating huge sums of passive mailbox money.

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    As The Beat Lease Hustle Gets More Competitive And Young Beatmakers Are Flooding The Market With Struggle Beats For Upcoming Rappers You See More And More Producers Looking At Other Revenue Streams Besides Beat Sales

    One lucrative option for a steady side income and extra exposure is placing songs in TV shows or films, commonly referred to as sync licensing. You can be lucky and a TV producer contacts you based on the strength of the beat you uploaded to Instagram last week, but its rare Having a game plan and all the pieces in place will greatly increase your chances in scoring placements in TV & movies.

    Join The Soundscape Community

    Inspirational Cinematic Music For Videos

    When you become an artist with, some pretty cool things happen. You’ll be part of a growing community of talented, independent artists, like yourself. If you’re like us, music is your passion your craft. You strive to better your sound every, single day. You want to be heard, and we want to listen.

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    How To Get Your Music Licensed For Films TV And Beyond

    Iâm Josh Briggs, General Manager for Terrorbird Media, where we represent over a dozen record labels and hundreds of independent artists for sync licensing, in addition to looking after the worldwide publishing rights for more than one hundred fifty songwriters. On a daily basis, we place music in everything from student films to blockbuster superhero movies, and do our best to be good stewards for the music with which weâre entrusted.

    In 2019, weâve been in not just the âGolden Age of Televisionâ for over a decade, but really the Golden Age of Media: thereâs more quality television, film, and video games being released now than ever before. Even ads have come to resemble short films, sketch comedy, or micro-blockbusters in order to keep antsy viewers from clicking âSkip Adâ at the first sensation of boredom. These days, there are more authentic, diverse stories being told than ever beforeâand all authentic storytelling requires great music. So if youâre a musician, you should know that wherever you hear music paired with a moving picture, there is money to be made in the form of sync licensing.

    â Josh Briggs

    How Much Does Cd Baby Keep From Its Sync Placements

    We take a 40% cut of revenue generated through our sync licensing program program, which is less than what traditional placement companies take, even more so since many also require a claim to your publishing. If you get a sync on your own, CD Baby takes nothing since we are your non-exclusive sync partner.

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    Audio Network Is Another Music Licensing Company You Can Get Your Music Placed On

    Audio Network has a catalog of over 100,000 carefully curated tracks, representing over 750 artists, producers and composers.

    Artists dont always like that word, curated, because it typically means a company only works with a small group of artists. And, Audio Network certainly is no exception.

    Still, they say theyre looking for music from artists in all genres.

    So, if youre interested in working with them, visit their website and send over your tracks via SoundCloud or YouTube.

    How Do You Research Music Libraries

    9 Easy Steps to Submit Music for Movies + TV Shows in 2021

    Take a couple of hours to identify 6-8 production music libraries, visit their website and do your research.

    That means:

    • Analyze the music they already have. Is your music is an obvious fit? Is theres a gap in their catalog you might be able to fill?
    • Find out how to submit music to them .
    • Find out if they sign tracks on exclusive or non-exclusive music licensing deals. If its obvious from their website that theyll want the exclusivity of the songs they accept, I would skip it. Unless youre already experienced in music licensing and know the risks and rewards of exclusive deals.

    While youre doing your research, there are a couple of things I want you to do:

  • Write down on a piece of paper the name of the music libraries that you want to send your music to and
  • Create a Music libraries folder in your browsers favorites and add the submissions/FAQ page of every library youve selected.

    If youre just starting out with music licensing, I suggest you stick with non-exclusive deals.


    When you sign a song to an exclusive deal, the library you sign the deal with is the only one authorized to license that song. That means if they forget about you or dont care , you wont be making any licensing money from that song.

    There may come a time when youre more familiar with the licensing ecosystem when you might want to research and test out exclusive deals but for now, I highly recommend forgetting about them.

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    Research Your Leads Work

    The first, obvious, step when researching a lead is to look at their work.

    The more you understand the type of music and projects they enjoy working with, the easier it will be for you to communicate effectively with them .

    What kind of music have they licensed in the past?

    What projects have they worked on in the past? What about now?

    Is there a recurring theme in their work and in the music they choose?

    Action item: write up a profile on each of your leads with the answers to the above questions.

    Im a big pen and paper advocate BUT, for the purposes of this exercise, I recommend going digital so that you can search and update your file easily.

    How Much Does A Sync Placement Pay

    Sync licensing can be lucrative, but its difficult to estimate what any one placement is worth because there isnt a standard sync fee. Instead, there are a number of factors that determine how much you earn from a particular placement. These include:

    • The type of visual media, from a video on social to a blockbuster film
    • The duration of the usage, from one-time use to in perpetuity
    • The budget of the production, from zero to millions
    • The region of use, from a local station to worldwide
    • The demand for the song and popularity of the artist
    • The length of the audio segment being used
    • The nature of the usage, from quick background music to opening credits

    Another thing to remember: When you control all the rights to your music, you make the rules. A placement on a big ad campaign should probably mean big bucks. But if youre helping your friend make a no-budget short about subterranean vampires, you can set the terms from free, to cheap, to backend payments based on the films future performance.

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    Whats The Best Option If Youre Just Starting Out

    When first getting started with music licensing, a combination of options 2 and 3 is ideal.

    Ill explain why in a minute but first, let me tell you why I wouldnt focus on option 1 and signing a publishing deal right from the start.

    First of all, youd need as much time researching publishers as youd need research music libraries, might as well stay in control of your catalogue then!

    Secondly, publishers usually wont want to sign you until youve proven youre financially viable. Publishers who want to sign you before youve had any success are not always good news. Whatever their sales pitch, its more likely that theyre taking a punt on your music and trying to beef up their roster to look more impressive and professional. That doesnt mean they cant work for you. It just means that theres no guarantee that they can make you any money and signing your catalogue over to them on an exclusive basis is probably not a great idea.

    If youre a more experienced and seasoned musician who has seen it all in the music industry, then thats a different story! You can probably smell a nasty scam from far away. In that case, if you find a publisher that seems like the right fit for you, it could be a great deal that saves you a lot of time and effort.

    +What I Learned About Music Licensing After Dedicating A Month To It

    With that in mind, lets get back to options 2 and 3

    +Never Say These 11 Phrases When Pitching Your Music For Film and TV

    Get Help Or Help Yourself

    African Safari 4K – Scenic Wildlife Film With African Music

    Music supervisionâi.e. the people out there whose job it is to find and clear good music for films, ads, etcâis a world of gatekeepers. Itâs not about ego, itâs simply their job. They arenât making mixtapes for their favorite movies, theyâre managing a budget, and weighing the needs/whims/desires of a client/producer/director against the needs/whims/desires of every record label/publisher/artist/manager, and finally, against their own creative input. So even in the best-case scenario, there are a lot of voices and opinions to navigate. Decide if you want to venture through this landscape alone, or if you want help.

    If you do manage to catch the eye or ear of a music supervisor, be gentle. Ask if you can submit music for their project. Ask them if they have specific guidelines for doing so. Follow those guidelines to the letter, and donât follow up unless they ask you to. If you land something this way, without the help of a third-party licensing agent, then congratsâyou nailed something that many others fail to figure out on their own, and now you get to keep all of the money.

    Before you get into an agreement with a third-party licensing agent, close-read the contract they send you. Ask questions, and consult an outside attorney if you need help understanding things. Like with anything, itâs on you to know what youâre signing.

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    Pros And Cons Of Sending Unsolicited Pitches

    Unsolicited pitches have some serious pitfalls, but if you’re music is good enough, you just might get lucky!

    • Easy to pitch to multiple individuals or companies using an email template
    • More personal approach to help you stand out
    • Allows you to approach those you already have a rapport with


    • Not many companies or individuals accept unsolicited emails

    What Is A Pre

    When you work with a sync licensing agency or add your music to a sync catalog, you are sometimes asked to pre-clear the permissions. This means youre granting that agency the right to negotiate a sync deal on your behalf. All parties involved can streamline the negotiations because sound recording and composition rights are bundled AND granted in advance.

    CD Babys sync licensing program works like that. What you as the artist trade in control you make up for in speed, and SPEED is the key to almost every sync placement these days. Productions move fast, and theres an almost unlimited supply of music out there so a tracks status as pre-cleared can mean the difference between getting placed and getting skipped over.

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