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How To Make Money From Spotify (As An Artist Or Musician)

By Matthew Vultaggio

July 25, 2021

If you want to learn how to make money from Spotify as an artist or musician, you may be in for a rude awakening. How do I know? I currently make money from Spotify myself.

The best way to make money from Spotify is by maximizing the number of streams your song gets by learning how to trip the Spotify algorithm to give you free streams and listeners. Money is then earned through streaming royalties and music publishing royalties.

Learning how to do this is not only the best way to start earning some money from Spotify but is also how you can start along the path towards Spotify success in general.

With that said, how much money can you expect to make from Spotify?

..and is it worth it?

Let’s get this out of the way.

How Much Does Spotify Pay Per 1 Million Streams

Although Spotify’s pay rate varies from month to month, on average you can expect to make $0.0032USD per stream.

1,000,000 streams x $0.0032 = $3,200 USD

That number is also assuming that:

  • Your music distributor does not take a cut
  • There are no collaborators you need to split that money with
  • A record label is not taking a cut

Unimpressive. Right?

So the question must be asked:

…is this the only way artists can make money from Spotify?

How Do Artists Make Money From Spotify

Artists make money from Spotify indirectly through streaming royalties and music publishing royalties. Streaming royalties are paid out by music distributors or record labels, and music publishing royalties are paid out by publishing administration companies or music publishers.

So, moving past streaming royalties, you can expect an additional $187.25 – $505.58 in music publishing royalties if you own 100% of the rights to the music.

…which is.. still weak...

Ultimately, it is pretty clear that releasing music on Spotify to make money is not a great idea.

Can You Make Money From Spotify?

You can make money from Spotify just like the thousands of other artists and musicians that make money from Spotify. To do this you need to know how to get fans to stream your music and how to trip the Spotify algorithm to maximize how many free streams and listeners you get.

So if all you are looking for is a good ROI, I’d recommend you go and get a job.

If all you care about is getting a Return On Investment in the form of money alone, you will absolutely love how easy it is to calculate exactly how much money you can earn by working 9-to-5 at a local restaurant or convenience store.

But, with that said, if you are excited about creating a real, valuable, long-term career in music, then let’s finally stop talking about the theory behind Spotify Success, and actually started.

How I Personally Got To 1 Million Streams On Spotify

It’s taken a long time. A very, very long time. But.. it’s been extremely worth it.

17 years ago I got my very first guitar, a sick Squier Stratocaster in sunburst (that I’d later bust-up quite a bit in my Nirvana phase) that started my life as a musician.

This lead to countless bands, live shows to usually 5 people (aka our parents and girlfriends), recording sessions, G.A.S. attacks, MySpace pages, and failed projects.

It took 17 whole years but I finally got what I always wanted since I was a 13-year-old kid…

A simple sliver of proof that I wasn’t crazy to be so obsessed with music and that I could actually make my passion for music my life.

Fast forward to today:

  • Over 3.5 million streams
  • 15+ official Spotify editorial placements
  • Support from big-time artists like Martin Garrix and Foals
  • Real, living, and breathing human beings reaching out saying that they dig my music

I’ve learned so much along the way, made too many mistakes, and probably spent too much money and too much time.

…And if you’re reading this right now, I’m happy to have the chance to be able to share all of those years of knowledge with you so you don’t need to go through the same struggles that I did.

But, enough about me…

“Is it possible for me to hit 1,000,000 Spotify streams as well?

It takes quite a bit of determination and focus, but honestly, if I can do it then anyone can do it.

Here are a few questions that I get quite frequently about finding success on Spotify.

What if I don’t have an fanbase or audience?

Having some kind of fanbase or audience can definitely be helpful and make things much easier, but this course is designed to show you how you can start seeing success on Spotify even if you don’t have an audience of your own yet.

I got to where I am today without an audience. In fact, I didn’t even tell friends or family that I started my musical project.

Do I need any experience or connections?

Not at all!

I assume you know nothing about digital marketing, advertising, or even Spotify in this course.

I got to where I am with no connections (as an introvert I still barely have any tbh) and I assume the same is the case for you (the no connections part at least).

What if I don’t have enough (or “good enough”) music to release?

Most music marketers will say something along the lines of “obviously the first step is to make sure you have great music” and leave it at that.

In this course, I actually provide dedicated lessons and exercises to make your music “good enough” and to make sure you have plenty of music to release.

What if I don’t have any new music to release?

Although you can use music that’s already been released, promoting music within its first 28 days of release is the best way to get on Spotify’s algorithmic playlists to get free streams and fans sent to your music.

This is why I actually provide dedicated lessons and exercises to make sure you have plenty of music to release.

Does this strategy really work… how do I even know I can trust you?

I’m not a marketing guru or business expert – I’m a musician that knows a lot about marketing.

I’ve spent the better part of my whole life dedicated to music and trying to make something happen in music.

The strategies I teach in this course are the very same that I’ve used myself to get over 3,500,000 streams on Spotify.

After helping a handful of friends across different genres in my music scene achieve amazing results, I decided to put everything I know into 1 single result-focused course to help as many dedicated music creators as possible do the same.

The proof is in the pudding as they say.

How To Make Money From Spotify Playlists

Want to learn how you can make money from your Spotify playlists?

To make money from Spotify playlists you need to build up the playlist’s follower count with real listeners before you get paid directly from artists for song placements, for reviewing song submissions, or by selling your playlist.

The 3 main ways to make money from Spotify playlists are to:

  1. Get paid directly from artists for song placements
  2. Get paid for considering a song placement by reviewing song submissions
  3. Sell your playlist to someone else

To learn more, check out my full article on How To Make Money From Spotify Playlists. 🙂

How To Upload To Spotify As An Artist (& Get Paid)?

Want to upgrade from just making music to actually get your own music on Spotify and becoming an official Spotify artist?

To upload to Spotify as an artist, you need to sign up with one of Spotify’s preferred music distributors and submit your music, artwork, and artist information through that distributor.

Thankfully it’s easy for anyone to upload music to Spotify because a company called DistroKid came along and started offering unlimited song uploads for a small annual fee without taking a percentage of any of your earnings away.

Before DistroKid, it was too expensive and complicated (..you had to pay PER song EVERY year).

To learn more about DistroKid, check out my big fat DistroKid review for everything you will ever need to know about them. There is even a handy How To Choose A Distributor Guide and some info on the nice DistroKid discount.

If you are wondering want to know more details about how to do this yourself, how exactly you can claim your artist profile, and actually make some money by uploading music to Spotify, check out my article called How To Upload To Spotify As An Artist (& Get Paid)

How To Get More Streams With Custom Smart Links

The best alternative to the endless amount of smart links, landing pages, and link-in-bio style pages out there is to simply build your own custom smart links by using WordPress.

I do this myself with my very own WordPress-based website (aka the one you are on right now) and find it to be way more flexible and effective, particularly if you want to do the Spotify algorithm hack by running Facebook and Instagram ads to your smart link pages.

The reasons I’d recommend doing this over using any smart link creator is because:

  • Without paying for these services, you can create smart links that are exactly in the style of Hypeddit, Linktree, Toneden, HyperFollow, etc.
  • Get more streams to your music by using my highly tested and conversion-optimized smart link template
  • Look more professional and credible by having a custom domain and no other company’s branding on them
  • Get your brand and identity across by perfectly customizing your smart links to look exactly how you want them to

On top of this, you’d actually have a legit and professional full-blown website and not just some smart links for promoting your music.

For a free step-by-step course on how to get started with this, check out my free course on smart links for music.

Some of my favorite music marketing tools

Thank you for reading this article, my friend, and I hope you found it helpful as you build your own successful career in music. 🙂

Here is a list of my favorite and most recommended tools and resources that I’ve personally used to get my music streamed over 4,000,000 times on Spotify as an artist.

Any of the paid services or tools listed here are most likely affiliate links, so if you do decide to use any of them, I’ll earn a small commission.

But in all honesty, these are the exact tools that I personally use, love, and recommend to anyone – including my own friends and family.

Music Distribution

To get your music on Spotify on all the other streaming services, I use DistroKid because you get unlimited song uploads for a low annual price.

If you want to learn more about DistroKid and music distribution, check out the in-depth DistroKid review that I’ve put together.

Or, if you want to get started with DistroKid right now, you can save on your first year with the DistroKid discount.

Facebook Ads For Spotify Success

Although Facebook Ads can be a real pain to get working properly, there is no denying that they are incredible for growing Spotify streams and getting your music in front of real fans.

This is why I’ve put together a completely free course that you can check out called Facebook Ads For Musicians’ Spotify Streams. 🙂

Music Publishing Royalties Collection

For collecting all of the publishing, mechanical, and live performance royalties owed to me whenever my music gets streamed or played, my go-to is Songtrust.

Songtrust is a publishing administration company which means that in addition to collecting all of those royalties for me, they do it on a global level.

To learn if Songtrust is right for you, I’d recommend checking out this article on Songtrust vs BMI.

And if you want to get started with Songtrust right now, I’d recommend learning about the Songtrust discount code so that you can get the best price. 🙂

Website & Smart Links

I’m personally not a big fan of the link-in-bio and smart links for music pages like ToneDen and Hyppeddit.

Instead, I prefer having a full-blown WordPress website that allows me to have a full website in addition to unlimited music links.

For getting started with this, I really like Bluehost because it is the cheapest and a theme called Thrive Themes because it is the most flexible and easiest to use.

I’ve actually created a free Smart Links Course that you can take to learn how to get set up and start getting more streams with custom smart links (I’ve even included the templates I am using!).

Want more tools and resources for your music career?

If you’d like to see even more of my favorite marketing tools and resources for musicians and music artists, I’ve created an even larger list on this page: Best Marketing Tools & Resources For Musicians (& Music Artists).

P.S. There are even some free tools and resources included on that page as well! 🙂

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