If you’re here, it’s likely you’re a musician and you’re looking to earn an additional stream of income. You may have tried the “gig life”, doing live performances, and even other digital marketing things (like starting an Instagram account, Facebook account, or Youtube), but maybe you’ve never tried Affiliate marketing.
In this post, I want to demonstrate for you how you can make an additional stream of income for your music business with affiliate marketing.
Musicians and Passive Income
Regardless of your business type, it’s always a good idea to build streams of income that are active and passive. Active income streams are the ones you earn from doing live shows, recording albums, teaching classes, and things that require you to invest your active time.
Passive income is what holds you over in times where active work isn’t really possible.
For example, let’s say you’re a singer and you get hoarse for reasons you can’t control. Do you want to see a dip in income? Probably not, but if you only relied on active income, then you’d likely see a dip when you’re not able to sing for the active earning appointments you have set up–that’s why passive income is a good thing.
Passive income has some active components to get it built, but once you have momentum, passive income can mean you get paid when you’re not working, and even in your sleep! Some examples of passive income streams you can have as a musician include:
- Album sales online
- Album downloads online
- Video ad revenue
- Earning royalties on a song your wrote
- Earning royalties on a project you participated in
- and, Affiliate marketing can count as a passive income stream when you follow the advice I’ll be including in this article!
Examples of Affiliate Marketing in the Music Industry
It’s difficult to really pull back the veil and see who’s doing affiliate marketing or how they’re monetizing in the music industry because most musicians aren’t transparent about the money parts of their businesses. They mostly focus on making their music and entertaining their fans, however, here are a few examples of music businesses that have added affiliate marketing as a way to monetize their businesses:
- Shaun Letang – Music Industry How to
- Dario – Music Production HQ
- And many others who don’t openly say so
In fact, stats show that $4 billion per year is spent on instruments in the US alone, so you can make money by recommending the instruments you use, the music you play, classes you recommend, and so much more.
Some people call them “endorsement deals” where you’re paid for recommending a product or service. With affiliate marketing, you can endorse a product or service, and make commissions for years!
What is Affiliate Marketing?
It’s probably best if I explain what affiliate marketing is with an example, so here it is…
Let’s say you’re online looking for editing software to produce a music track. You decide to look up “Best editing software for musicians” and several posts come up.
You click on the post that sticks out to you the most, and you read their recommendations. They tell you exactly what you’re looking for, so you click from their post to buy the product they recommended. If you clicked on an affiliate link within their post, then the website owner would get a commission for the sale.
This scenario is an example of how affiliate marketing works. It’s typically an internet user looking to solve a problem that goes on a search online for recommendations, and lands on the page of someone who has done their research and demonstrates their expertise. When context, authority, and trust is built thru the content, the internet user is likely to follow the recommendation, and the website owner can be paid a commission for the sale.
How Affiliate Marketing Works?
In affiliate marketing, there’s usually:
- A merchant who sells products or services
- An affiliate network or tracking software
- and, an affiliate or influencer who recommends products or services
When the three work together, they each make money. The affiliate sends a customer to the merchant using tracking links, and the merchant delivers the product or service to the customer.
How Affiliate Marketing can Work for you as a Musician
As a musician, you have to build an audience to sell your music, event tickets, classes, and anything else you do to monetize your business. When you’re in front of people, it’s likely that you may also get questions or find yourself recommending products or services.
In this case, you can join the affiliate programs, and recommend those products using your affiliate links. In cases where an affiliate program doesn’t exist, you can find similar products that may have an affiliate program and recommend those in exchange for the commission.
Step-by-Step: How to Get Started with Affiliate Marketing as a Musician
If you want to get started with affiliate marketing, here are the steps I’d recommend you take.
1. Choose a Niche or Target Audience
First, you want to identify who you’re trying to attract. It’s likely, that you’ll want to attract people who are going to be interested in your affiliate products as well as your own, but you want to be clear about who that is, what problems they have that connects them with you, and what solutions they might be looking for.
2. Build a Website
Many musicians focus on social media and use their website as an “accessory”, but your website is your asset. It’s something that can’t be taken away from you. Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, or Pinterest can ban your account without warning or notice. With your website, it’s your property, and you own it.
You can build an email list from your website and have an easier way to contact your audience when you have promotions or things they might want to know.
You can have a website built within 30 seconds using the website builder below…
3. Choose Relevant Affiliate Partners
You’ll find that there are several affiliate partners you can choose from. There are companies like Masterclass who have music courses, there are companies like Musician’s Friend who have instruments, and there’s companies like Guitar Center who has all kinds of music equipment.
You can shop around within affiliate networks and with independent companies to see which affiliate partners align most with your brand and your vision for your company. It’s important to be careful and find good affiliate partners, so if you’re uncertain what you’re looking for, take a look at my guide for how to find good affiliate programs to join.
- How to Find Good Affiliate Programs to Join
- The Best Affiliate Networks
- How I Made my First Sale with Affiliate Marketing (with less than two full months of experience!)
4. Get Traffic
Once you\’ve joined the affiliate programs, you\’re going to have to create content. You can create written articles, videos, audio clips, or other types of content, and within your content, you have to demonstrate the value of your affiliate products. You can create content focused around displaying your music abilities and add in a shoutout for affiliate products–this would generate sales here and there (depending on the size of your audience).
You can also diversify your content and create some content showcasing your music abilities for album sales or other product/event sales, and in addition to that, you can create reviews, comparisons, and other content that would really drive your affiliate sales–this would be more likely to build your affiliate income in an intentional way.
As you put more content out, and optimize it appropriately for search engines, social media algorithms, and user quality, you’ll attract a bigger and bigger audience.
5. Make Money
Once you’ve built your website, joined relevant affiliate programs, and grown a relevant audience, you’ll start to see affiliate sales and money in the bank. Making money with affiliate marketing can really help you by diversifying your income streams.
Maybe you never really thought about monetizing your business with affiliate marketing before this article, but hopefully, now, you understand the value, and how you can implement it in your business. If you have any questions about this, leave them in the comments section below and I’ll get back with you.
If you’d like to get started with affiliate marketing, I’d love to help you out. I’m a full-time affiliate marketer, and I help people every day to start or grow their business with affiliate marketing. I’d love to help you out. Join me here to learn more about how I can help you.