Q. Streaming or download donations. Which is more lucrative?
A. As we all know, streaming services don't pay very much. Most streaming services pay one penny for every 100 plays. That means you must get a huge amount of plays to earn a significant amount of money.
Download donations, on the other hand, come in much larger amounts, but in most cases they are few and far between. Donations usually come from friends or fans of someone who worked on a project. That's why it is important to bring as many of your fans and friends into our public Facebook group as possible. This is where new releases are first announced. Although it does happen on rare occasions, don't expect download donations from people who don't know you. Here are some statistics: The smallest donation received to date was $2.00. That's double what a fixed price download would have been. The largest donation we have received to date was $200 for one download. The average donation for downloads is $5.00.
If you have lots of supportive fans who are familiar with your music, this can be very lucrative. If you need help on how to build a supportive fan base, contact me.
Streaming services can be lucrative with a little work. The money comes in smaller amounts at one time, but it can be more consistent and grow as more people become aware of your music. Thanks to our artist “Sullie”, who has some stream team experience, we now have a Spotify stream team. If you can afford a few minutes a day to start your playlist, play it through at least once, record the stats and post them into a group chat to prove you have played the playlist, the Spotify algorithm will suggest your music to more people and more playlists. With a little consistency your streaming audience will grow and so will your quarterly earnings.
If you have music on streaming services through our label I highly recommend you join our stream team by clicking here or going to the “Mutual Artist Support” tab on our website. In today's new music industry we need to develop as many income streams as possible with growth potential to get closer to earning a living from what we do.
Streaming is small amounts that can grow over the long term. Download donations are larger amounts over the short term. It certainly doesn't hurt to work on building both.
Q. How are you a “Not For Profit” business?
A. This is not to be confused with a “Non-Profit” business. Taxation requirements are different for each.
This is how we operate:
When someone downloads a song and makes a donation or the song earns revenue on streaming services, the label splits revenue into equal shares for each job performed. Each person who worked on that project gets paid an equal share for each job they did. The Label is considered one job and receives one equal share. The entire label's share gets reinvested into the growth of the label.
When someone makes a donation to the label the entire amount becomes the label's share. It gets reinvested into continued growth to help all of our artists grow with the label.
If you would like to donate to the label click the donate button you find at this link: https://musicforworldpeacerecords.com/home
If you would like to download a song and make a donation to that project click here: https://musicforworldpeacerecords.com/music-releases
Q. Does your label give advances?
A. Our current budget doesn't allow for advances. Artists that produce income for the label give us the ability to create budgets. We hope to have a budget for advances to our top income producing artists in the future, but our current budget is allocated to advertising. We need to find ways to bring in enough revenue to provide our artists with advances. Anyone who can help us do that would certainly get an advance to help them with their next project.
We have recent experience in running Facebook ads. Some of our artists are providing us with budgets for brand awareness ads through our labels business suite. These ads help get the artist's name and products known world-wide very quickly. Our current budget is allocated to brand awareness of the label. The bigger we get the more people our artists can reach. The bigger our artists get the more people the label can reach.
Q. Do you have a newsletter I can subscribe to or a mailing list I can join?
A. Yes. You can sign up for our mailing list by clicking here and you will receive our newsletter when it is available.
Q. Which company do you use for distribution?
A. CD Baby.
Q. What territories do you distribute in?
A. All countries that have unrestricted internet access.
Q. What does your label do for artists?
A. Our label is run by musicians, songwriters and producers and is for musicians, songwriters and producers. Our people think of our label in the same way they think of a band they are in. Everyone works together to help the success of everyone. Each team works toward the success of their own team as well as the success of the label. The label works toward the success of itself as well as the success of each team.
We offer worldwide digital distribution to our artists with limited, but growing, promotion. Most of the promotion is primarily left to the artist and his/her team. We believe it takes a team to make an artist successful and we help our artists build their team. The label is one member of that team. The success of the project and/or how much money it makes is never guaranteed, but is the direct result of the efforts of each team member.
In our private Facebook group, our artists have access to educational material to help with their art, craft and business. When an artist has a contracted release on our label we give them access to two of Rick Barker's music business courses that we purchased. Rick Barker is Taylor Swift's former manager.
The success of our label is dependent on the success of our artists and the success of our artists is dependent on the success of our label. When everyone is working to help each other success is inevitable.
Q. What are your submission guidelines?
A. Our first requirement is that your song must have lyrics that address the topics of peace, non-violence, anti-war, or the teachings of religious prophets without sounding like a religious song. Listen to our artists to get a general idea of what we are looking for.
You may submit one song link only, to firstname.lastname@example.org. Do not attach music files unless instructed to do so after sending a link. If we feel that your song will help us with our mission we will offer you a contract and/or ask to hear more of what you have. If your song is close, but in need of further work we will give you feedback on what you need to do to get it released. If your song is totally off topic you won't hear back from us.
Before submitting completed songs, be sure to read our submission requirements.
Q. Why do you want songs with religious prophet teachings to sound non-religious? Don't you like worship or gospel music?
A. The idea is, if it sounds like a religious song, the only people who will listen to it will be religious people. That is literally "Preaching to the choir". They are already aware of the message of peace taught by their iconic prophets. We want everyone to hear the message and not reject it just because it is Christian, Buddhist, Muslem, etc. There are many commonalities in each religion that are overlooked by each denomination. We want everyone to realize those commonalities, including atheists. They all carry a message of how to achieve world peace. Jesus was once asked "Why do you hangout with criminals (sinners)?" He replied something like "Does a doctor need to treat the well or the sick?" We try to follow his teachings as best we can. In this case, we need to get the message of peace to those who need it. Not those who already know it.
Q. How do your people on your label get paid?
A. Each contract will be different, based on the number of people in our private group who worked on the song, but generally everyone who worked on a project will get an equal share for each job performed. A typical split may look something like this:
Songwriter, Publisher, Recording artist, visual artist, producer, recording engineer, editor, mixing engineer, mastering engineer, label. This would make 10 equal divisions, and each person would receive 10% of net profits received by the label. Some people may contribute more than one job to a project and would get an equal share for each job they contribute.
Everyone getting paid must have access to a PayPal account, and payments are made at the end of each quarter that has a minimum gross amount of $50 available for disbursement to that project.
Upon initial release, the song is posted to our website to stream for free and download for a donation. As of the writing of this FAQ, donations have ranged from $2.00 to $200.00 for one song download, and have shown to be the best and fastest source of revenue for everyone who worked on a project. Average donations are $10 USD for one song. Not every song receives donations. Donations usually depend on the size and loyalty of the fan base and network of each team member. However, we have had some donations from total strangers who have no connection to the label or any of the team members on a particular project.
Within one week of the release, we submit the release to CD Baby for world-wide distribution. Due to the pandemic, the current turn-around time is 6 weeks from upload and finalization. When our combined releases result in $100, CD Baby sends us a payment. That payment is distributed to the split sheets of each song that resulted in income. Team members on songs that have reached their payout threshold (some $50 and some $100) will receive a payment from us. Those that have not will wait until their threshold is reached or their contract is expired....whichever comes first.
Q. How long does it take for world-wide distribution to take affect?
A. During the pandemic, CD Baby recommends a distribution release date of 6 weeks from the date of the upload. At that time your music will begin to appear on major platforms like iTunes, Apple Music, Spotify, YouTube, Amazon. The remaining platforms will release your music at random times in the weeks following.
Q. How do you promote the music of your artists?
A. We promote our releases on Facebook and Twitter. On Facebook we announce each new release in our public group. We also look for opportunities to mention our team members, such as birthdays, anniversaries, release on digital platforms, etc. and post a link to their work. On Twitter we do a "Tweet of the day" as we rotate through each release on our website, Spotify, and YouTube. In addition to each song page on our website, we have a page for each team member, with a bio, a list of their work with the label, and links to work they did outside of the label. We have a monthly column in Write Away online magazine, located in the UK. Write-away has 10,000 subscribers. The editor of Write-away also has a magazine called Country Music Express. Our country artists will appear in both.
Q. What are your future plans for promotion as your label grows?
A. We are currently collecting a list of internet radio stations, music bloggers, playlist curators, and magazines. We share these lists with artists who want to boost their promotion efforts.
When operating expenses are covered by the amount of money coming into the label, excess is placed into an advertising budget. Whenever we have the funds to do so, we run a contest offering the team who brings in the highest revenue within a given time period a portion of our advertising budget. The money is not paid directly to them, but we work with them to create a social media ad for Facebook and Twitter. Then we pay for the ad.
Q. What if I want to invest in my own advertising?
A. Artists may invest in their own paid advertisements at their own discretion as they would if they were promoting themselves or their band outside of our label. This is not required, but is encouraged for anyone with the budget to do so.
Q. If I pay for my own advertising, what should I focus on?
A. That will depend on your goal. Digital distribution platforms will probably not recoup your investment, but will help you get known throughout the world and grow your fan base. Getting donation based downloads from our website will result in slower world-wide recognition and growth of your fan base, but will result in more money in a shorter period of time. It should be noted that your experience in advertising will determine your results. A well written and well target ad will give you better results than a poorly written or poorly targeted one.
Q. How much will it cost me to have my song released on your label?
A. Traditionally no record label should charge you to release your music. However, constant changes in the music industry combined with the pandemic have made it next to impossible for Major labels and many indie labels to show a profit. Out of desperation many are resorting to 360 deals, and some are even requiring artists to put up a substantial amount of money as a guarantee that they will perform their contract obligations. Back in the day we referred to these labels as "Song Sharks".
We go by the long standing rule that says a legitimate label won't charge you for releasing your music. However, if you had a song produced and recorded outside of our private Facebook group, and didn't do it all yourself, you probably paid a bundle of money for your finished product. Some masters have been known to cost anywhere from a few thousand to a few hundred thousand to produce. With the small payouts resulting from the changes in the industry it is next to impossible to recover your investment. However, if you think of that investment as a marketing expense with the intent of getting your name widely known, then it has served it's purpose and may over the long haul result in some profit.
If your song meets our criteria and can help us with our mission, you don't pay to get a release, but you do get paid when the release generates revenue. If your song needs a co-writer or producer or any type of engineer, you may collaborate with anyone in our private group who possesses the skills you need. You will not be charged any up-front fees, but will share the profits with everyone who worked on your project. That means everything you make will be clear profit, even if it's only a few dollars. If you had spent $1,000 to produce a song and received $500 in sales and streaming, you didn't make $500. You lost $500. If it cost you nothing to produce a song and you only received $10 from sales and streaming, you made $10 clear profit.
Q. What if I want to hire someone from the private group to help me with a project that is not for release on your label?
A. The people working on projects for our label do so voluntarily for a share of profits, but they also do what they do to earn a living. If you choose to hire someone from our private group for a non-related project, you may do so by paying the rates that they charge their customers outside of our private group.
It is advised that before paying for the services of someone in our private group that you first do a project for release on our label with them. That way you get to see how they are to work with before hiring them. You both get to sharpen your skills and earn some profit by doing the volunteer work with each other, and you get a “try before you buy” scenario.
Q. Some people I know were offered a 360 deal. That sounds like the best possible deal a label can offer. What is a 360 deal?
A. Back in the day of vinyl and CD sales, most major labels were able to profit from royalties alone. When streaming services were introduced it changed the game and the majors could no longer profit from music sales. They had to make changes in order to survive. These changes included a 360 deal, which meant that the label got a percentage of everything the artist made, whether it be royalties from sales, downloads, streaming, touring, small local gigs, endorsements or licensing. Some even went as far as taking a portion of ANY money earned by the artist, even if they had a side job flipping burgers. A 360 deal is the best possible deal......for the label, but one of the worst possible deals for the artist. If you are offered one, please consult an entertainment attorney.
Q. Do your contracts include 360 deals?
A. No. We try to be as fair as we possibly can to our artists without being unfair to our label. 360 deals often result in bankruptcy by the artist. Our goal is to help our artists to make money while they help us achieve world peace through music. We work together as a team to help each other. That is what the world needs to do to achieve world peace. Imagine if everyone in the world organized and worked together toward peace.
Q. Can I see a sample contract?
A. Yes. We have two types of contracts: A collaboration agreement for working with other Music For World Peace team members and a master owner contract for master owners who have already paid everyone who participated in the master or has agreed to pay everyone who worked on the project from earned revenue.