You can build a music career and monetize your creativity with many music streaming services. But not every one of them can offer an artist, especially a beginner, acceptable conditions.
The German music streaming service SoundCloud offers not only music, but also a social networking feature. Registered users have the ability to follow other users’ profiles, like and share music tracks. A feature of the web service is the presentation of the timeline of each individual work in the form of a sound wave, on which it is also possible for users to add comments to songs at certain points on the track. For all these features, it is enough to have a free account. There is also the option to link your profile to Facebook, Twitter, and some other social networks, thereby promoting SoundCloud content.
The biggest advantage of SoundCloud is that, at the level of a web service, it is an authentic and lively part of today’s music scene: it is an extremely famous and haunted meeting place for both those who create and those who listen to music. It goes without saying for many musicians and producers to have and manage their own SoundCloud page. It is created quickly and easily.
However, from the point of view of musicians, SoundCloud has the disadvantage that their music cannot be sold directly through the platform, so it is not possible to offer paid downloads of their songs, for example. Online trading is only possible when using other services connected to SoundCloud or to which you can be directed from the profile page. Other services offer their users direct sales of their songs (eg Bandcamp).
Founded in turn in 2007, Bandcamp is one of the most well-known alternatives to SoundCloud. Artists who are not part of any label partially sell their entire musical repertoire through the website. Bandcamp is very popular, especially in the rock and indie scene. In 2014, a new “Bandcamp for Labels” section was introduced and has been progressively used by several prominent independent labels.
Bandcamp membership is free for artists. Labels, on the other hand, pay a monthly amount if they promote up to 15 tracks or artists. for more than 15 tracks, the cost increases, at which point a number of bands and musicians can be sponsored through the page.
Bandcamp also allows the sale of its own music. When you open your account (regardless of whether you are an artist or a label), you will have the choice of whether to offer downloads of your music for free or for a fee.
Bandcamp’s participation in the profits from music sales is minimal: 15% of the sale price goes to the platform, the rest goes to the artist. If the album has been downloaded more than 50,000 times, the commission is even reduced to 10%. If you offer your music on physical audio media such as CDs, vinyl records, or sell merchandise, you will have the option to list them for sale on your page, also in this case 10% of the sale price is for Bandcamp.