The best digital distribution platforms 2021
In a jungle of digital distribution platforms, a lot of musicians struggle with deciding the perfect fit for them, and what service will give them the best overall deal. We have listed our favorite services, which we think give artists the most bang for their buck.
The only service that has a totally free plan to offer their artists. It let you distribute your music to all the biggest streaming platforms. It’s all done through their free app, available for both Android and iOS. Users can keep track of their streams, audience and get 100% of your royalties, and a big bonus is that you also can split royalties with other artists and collaborators. Amuse offers three plans, one for free, plus the Boost plan for 24.99$/year which will give faster delivery and support as well as a few neat features, and last Amuse Pro for $59.99/year which gives artists fast lane releases, fast lane support, and also publishing the music to social channels like Instagram and TikTok. For the free plan, it takes 4 weeks from registering your tune until the release date (2 weeks for the Boost plan). This is by far our favorite service, and we are using the free version ourselves. We recommend trying it! Read more.
Distrokid is one of the most popular distribution services, and we understand why. Distrokid lets musicians publish their work on all the major streaming platforms. It only costs $19.99 a year for unlimited uploads and releases, and you have all the rights and get 100% of your royalties with a monthly payout. Royalty splits are included, and you can easily set up your release to automatically route any percentage of earnings to anyone. Distrokid also claims that they’re 10-20% faster to release your music than any other distribution service. The only disadvantage we see is the lack of a mobile app with all streaming data, statistics, and an overview of royalties and income. But if it’s important for you to make it simple and reliable, Distrokid may be the way to go. Read more.
Ditto has three different packages. Artist, Professional, and Label, starting at $25 per year for unlimited releases. You keep 100% of your royalties and you get 24/7 support, as well as full statistics, trending reports, and advanced analytics. The way Ditto let their artists have the chance to enter their music to their big playlists and make promo campaigns for upcoming releases is a big advantage. As Ditto puts it, distribution is just the start. With fast track releases, chart registering, getting playlisted, and a huge amount of advanced tools as mentioned above, Ditto is a great place to boost your music career. Still much like Distrokid, if you want to use a simple, yet reliable distribution service, you’ll be satisfied with Ditto. Read more.
Tunecore has been in the game for a long time, and many will say they changed the way we distribute music. Back in 2006, Tunecore was the first one who partnered with digital stores to let artists sell their music without having to deal with labels. They operate with a little different pricing model where you pay per single ($9.99 / year) or per album ($29.99 / year), but you still keep 100% of royalties and revenue. Tunecore helps you distribute your music to 150+ streaming platforms and music services worldwide, not different from the other services listed. Their social media plan helps you get your music on social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram and you’ll get paid for it, not unlike some of the other distributors mentioned, but still a great service. We love Tunecore, and in our opinion close to the top of the list, but it can be a struggle to understand all their services and plans, which makes us go to Amuse where everything is to the point and super easy. Read more.
Last on our list, but absolutely not least, CD Baby. Get onto 150+ streaming and download services. They have four options, standard, and pro for singles and albums. And the prices are $9.95 for a single ($29.99 pro) and $29 per album ($69 pro), but they take a 9% cut of your royalties. On the album plan, there is included worldwide CD and vinyl distribution, which is super cool! Like all the other platforms, CD Baby offers advanced analytics and lets you have 100% control of your stats and data. You’ll be able to distribute your music on social media platforms and receive revenue from plays. Another thing worth mentioning is that CD Baby users will be able to use a marketing tool used by major labels, Show.co is included for FREE and it let you grow your audience, build your email list and make Spotify audio ads, and a lot more. CD Baby is not a gamechanger but they’re up there with the big guns. Read more.
Choosing the right distributor and the right plan may feel overwhelming but in the end, these are all great services and deliver a lot of value to their artists. So use this article to navigate the market and do some research yourself, then you’re almost certain to succeed with publishing your music. In the Verce team, we are several EDM producers and find Amuse the best fit for us, and we love the fact that everything is accessible through a mobile app, which makes it much easier to control and manage our releases and revenue. We hope this made it easier to choose your next distribution platform and we wish you the best of luck with your next release!
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