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In this day and age, being a working musician requires you to be aware of several new business models which can bring potential success, many of which involve the online world. One of those avenues that business-savvy musicians are looking at is producing royalty-free music in various styles and made available through online distributors, connecting talented musicians and their libraries of diverse music with the exact right audience who needs them.
This so happens to be the specialty of a company / website called Snail Music, who do exactly this. Their service offers high quality tracks at affordable rates that span across a variety of genres, and can all be purchased through the popular website, Audiojungle, which is part of Envato. Various audio licences are available to cover all your legal bases.
As luck would have it, I had a chance to grill Snail Music in the persons of their co-founders Pablo and Fernando about their dynamic music business and how it functions.
I think that in this rapidly changing world, musicians are sometimes the type of people who aren’t necessarily clued in to the full range of business possibilities open to them, as they are more focused on the creative side of things. And so, I think it’s valuable to touch base with fellow musicians who are actively developing these skills themselves.
Without further delay, here is my interview with Snail Music!
Q: What is the concept behind Snail Music?
A: We started Snail Music as a way to create music and be paid for it without the hassle of becoming a band. We just wanted a business that was an expression of our creativity. So nowadays we produce royalty-free songs that we later sell on some online marketplaces, like Audiojungle.
Q: Can you tell me how long Snail Music has been around and how it came to be?
A: We’ve been around for 2 years now. It all started when my partner and amazing musician, Fernando, registered on Audiojungle and started to upload music there. Despite being an amazing guitarist and singer, he never produced a song before with the computer, so he had to learn everything from scratch.
After some weeks on it, he told me (Pablo) if I wanted to join, so I said yes on the spot! At that time I was working as a general manager for an SEO agency, but my entrepreneurial side was always stronger than any fancy job. I started to build the Snail Music webpage and, through my previous SEO knowledge, getting traffic: customers and referrals and three or four months later I quit my job to become a full-time co-founder.
Q: Do you have a typical type of customer that comes to you the most for music?
A: Yes, they’re mostly online freelancers in the media industry or little-medium companies that need background music for their corporate videos or advertising.
Q: Do you do custom orders? ie. following directions to get a certain effect
A: We did it for a while, but not now. We believe almost anything that you can need in terms of royalty-free music is already available on Audiojungle and, from an economical point of view, its much more profitable to release a track and sell licenses to whoever is interested than only to one single client.
Q: Is it possible for two different people who don’t know each other to end up using the same song from you?
A Yes, it is, although the Internet is so big nowadays in terms of data that is almost impossible to listen to the same song twice randomly from different videos or ads.
Q: What license do you recommend to clients the most and why?
A: Usually what most people need is the ‘Standard’ license, which is also the cheaper ($19) but covers all uses on the Internet. The other ones are well suited for other end products (apps, audiobooks…) or broadcast (tv, radio…)
Q: How has the rise of mobile affected your business?
A: It’s always good for us because mobile means that more people are connected and browsing the Internet for more hours so, therefore, the economics are moving there: youtube ads, Facebook advertising, Instagram… all they are what was before just tv or radio ads. And all of them need background music.
Q: Do you create literally any kind of music people ask for?
A: What we do is create our music depending on the ‘best sellers’ on Audiojungle. The best royalty-free music authors are competing there for a spot and, when a song is selling a lot of licenses, it means that a lot of people are liking it.
Q: What’s the most popular “genre” you make for people?
A: Always the ‘corporate’ genre. You can listen to some examples of it here. In the end, companies are the ones who are spending more money on advertising, of course, and they demand a type of song that is mostly a combination of some moods: happy, uplifting and inspirational. Why? Because that’s what they want to transmit to their clients with their product or service.
Q: How busy are you guys?
A: Hahaha that’s a good one! We’re pretty busy. Me, for example, I have another business to run, dedicated to the cryptocurrency industry. So if I’m not with one I’m with the other, but it’s also true that we have our own schedules and we try always to automate everything. Creating any business from scratch is difficult and very time-consuming but if you do it right you can later enjoy the economic rewards, manage your time and don’t have more bosses than your clients.
Q: Do any of your artists make their own music and is it available anywhere?
A: Nowadays we’re dedicating all of our time to royalty-free music, because that’s a full-time job, so everything is in our portfolio. The non-royalty-free music is not on the Internet as we liked to play live but not recording anything.
Q: Do many people ask for music that has vocals in it, or are you dealing with predominantly instrumentals?
A: Mostly instrumentals, because you see, people who need a background song for their video or advertising already have a voice explaining something, so they do not want another background voice, only instrumentals that don’t bother but also add a nice mood.
Q: What upcoming plans does Snail Music have in store?
A: We’re humble, so our plan right now is just continuing doing what we’re doing and working every week without stopping, improving the business little by little with new music and nice SEO & Youtube work. There’s always things to do when you run a business, so it’s impossible to be bored, haha. We’re already very very grateful of being able to make a living from what we love and to enjoy the present moment.
Hey everybody, thanks for checking out the interview! If you have any questions, leave them in the comments and we or the Snail Music folks will get back to you in due course. If you want to contact them directly, email: firstname.lastname@example.org