• Posts
  • RSS
  • ◂◂RSS
  • Contact

  • How Does Streaming Pay?

    July 7th, 2016
    contra, money, music  [html]
    When the Free Raisins put out our studio album we signed up with CD Baby for digital distribution. They're very vague on how much you earn this way:

    Every one of our digital music partners pays differently, but the average we pay out is 60 cents per song downloaded, $6.50 per full-album download, and fractions or whole cents per stream (when people listen to your song as if on a radio station, but don't download or buy it). Remember we pay you 91% of the total income from digital distribution, keeping only a 9% cut.
    CD Baby FAQ

    Our album has now been up for about two years, so I thought I'd see what we're getting paid for streaming. [1] All numbers are how much we got; that's after CD Baby's 9% cut.

    Channel #streams per-stream payment
    Spotify 7458 $0.00298665
    Google Locker 214 $0.00029294
    Rdio 195 $0.00259000
    iTunes 167 $0.00781138
    Google Music Store 155 $0.00931066
    Amazon Cloud Drive 142 $0.00227943
    iTunes Match 104 $0.00117343
    YouTube Music 52 $0.00477044
    Deezer 29 $0.00452452
    Groove 22 $0.04171718
    Rhapsody 19 $0.00890842
    iTunes Radio 4 $0.00099782
    Tidal 2 $0.01382660
    Omnifone 1 $0.01879669

    Spotify is by far the biggest of the streaming services for us:

    On the other hand, the best-paying platforms are the smaller ones:

    I wanted to make sure that Groove wasn't an error here, so I looked at the details for those plays. Here's plays over time, with time on the x-axis, payment per play on the y-axis, and the size of the bubble indicating the number of plays:

    (I don't know what happened in November 2014 for that month to be much lower.)

    So they really do pay ten times as much as Spotify per play. I think maybe what's happening here is that they don't have a free tier, which means they have much more money available per play?

    How to evaluate this financially?

    • We did earn back the $49 we paid CD Baby for their "Standard Distribution Bundle."
    • If these ~8.5k streams displaced even ~3 CD sales, we lost money.
    • If these ~8.5k streams added even one additional booking, we gained money.

    Plus, if people enjoyed listening to it, that counts for something.

    (In general, thinking about this sort of thing it's hard to tell whether to compare it to traditional radio, which paid musicians nothing, or to traditional sales, which paid pretty well.)


    [1] The majority (two thirds) of digital income was actually from track downloads, not streaming, and nearly all of that was through iTunes, at $0.637/track. Other channels, each of which has sold only one of our tracks ever, are iTunes-UK ($0.823), iTunes-CH ($0.807), iTunes-IL ($0.404), and Amazon MP3 ($0.637). Track downloads account for two thirds of our digital income, with the other third being streaming.

    Comment via: google plus, facebook

    Recent posts on blogs I like:

    Austerity is Inefficient

    Working on an emergency timetable for regional rail has made it clear how an environment of austerity requires tradeoffs that reduce efficiency. I already talked about how the Swiss electronics before concrete slogan is not about not spending money but ab…

    via Pedestrian Observations February 27, 2021

    Fireside Friday, February 26, 2021

    Fireside this week, but next week we are diving into our long awaited series on pre-modern textile production, though we will be particularly focused on the most important clothing fibers in the Mediterranean world, wool and linen (rather than, say, silk …

    via A Collection of Unmitigated Pedantry February 26, 2021

    The Troubling Ethics of Writing (A Speech from Ancient Sumer)

    (Translated from a transcript of an ancient Sumerian speech by Uruk's most well-respected Scriptological Ethicist) Writing is a profoundly dangerous technology: Access to writing was initially, and still remains, uneven. What's worse, the rich are m…

    via BLOG - Cullen O'Keefe February 15, 2021

    more     (via openring)


  • Posts
  • RSS
  • ◂◂RSS
  • Contact