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TV royalties - how much to expect from placements? Drum Machines & Samplers
Old 2nd February 2018
  #1
Gear Addict
 

Thread Starter
TV royalties - how much to expect from placements?

Hi everyone

Just a quick question about tv royalties. I am fairly new to the library music business, but since a few month I see regular tv placements coming in on Tunesat. The first PRO statement may still be a while away though. But I'm curious to know what I can expect from it approximately.

So, can anybody give some rough numbers for tv placements (lets say between 10 and 20 seconds of music each, some primetime, some in the morning or afternoon, on a pretty wide array of tv channels (BBC, Channel 4, some french and german tv stations))? How much does one placement pay on a rough average? Or, if that is easier, how many placements do you need approximately to earn 1000$ from them? Just the royalties, not counting the sync fees.

I imagine that it varies pretty widely. But a rough estimation would be enough. It's just to satisfy my curiosity.
Old 2nd February 2018
  #2
Here are definitive answers!



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Keep grinding!
Old 2nd February 2018
  #3
I am sure your next question will be "How Many Tracks Do You Need To Make A Full-Time Income?" Fortunately, I have the answer!

Old 2nd February 2018
  #4
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Jeff Hayat's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by goodkeys View Post
Hi everyone

Just a quick question about tv royalties. I am fairly new to the library music business, but since a few month I see regular tv placements coming in on Tunesat. The first PRO statement may still be a while away though. But I'm curious to know what I can expect from it approximately.

So, can anybody give some rough numbers for tv placements (lets say between 10 and 20 seconds of music each, some primetime, some in the morning or afternoon, on a pretty wide array of tv channels (BBC, Channel 4, some french and german tv stations))? How much does one placement pay on a rough average? Or, if that is easier, how many placements do you need approximately to earn 1000$ from them? Just the royalties, not counting the sync fees.

I imagine that it varies pretty widely. But a rough estimation would be enough. It's just to satisfy my curiosity.
There is no way to answer that Q. Here in the USA (same in the EU and GB?) how much you make works on a point system, that take into consideration weight, ratings, time of day, network, how much of the cue is used, and type of music (use).

So, you might have a cue in lib A that, over the course of a year, earns you 1k. Then the next cue, which is very similar, earns you 3k from lib B.

So, the best answer to I'm curious to know what I can expect from it approximately, is anywhere from one dollar, to hundreds of thousands of dollars. It's a weight and see game, and right now you are in weight mode.

Good luck.
Old 2nd February 2018
  #5
Gear Addict
 

Thread Starter
Thank you all, that is very interesting information.
Old 2nd February 2018
  #6
Quote:
Originally Posted by goodkeys View Post
Thank you all, that is very interesting information.
Look at those videos!

The proof is right there. Most people will say “it varies”. Yes, it does. But you need to see how it varies. Look at those videos and get an idea of how different placements range.
Old 2nd February 2018
  #7
Gear Addict
 

Thread Starter
Yes, it seems to range from a few cents to +1k$ per placement. But to aim at 25-50$ per placement on average gives a pretty good idea. Of course the less tracks you have the more it varies. If you have tracks in the hundreds it'll average out much more.
Old 2nd February 2018
  #8
Quote:
Originally Posted by goodkeys View Post
Yes, it seems to range from a few cents to +1k$ per placement. But to aim at 25-50$ per placement on average gives a pretty good idea. Of course the less tracks you have the more it varies. If you have tracks in the hundreds it'll average out much more.
Yes.

Now you have the answers. Start building up that catalog!
Old 3rd February 2018
  #9
Gear Guru
 
drBill's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Desire Inspires View Post
Look at those videos!
Sigh....OK. Go ahead then if you must. But look at your own risk. Much dis-information is available on the internet. Even MORE dis-information if you're willing to pay for it.
Old 3rd February 2018
  #10
Lives for gear
 
VitaEtMusica's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by goodkeys View Post
Yes, it seems to range from a few cents to +1k$ per placement. But to aim at 25-50$ per placement on average gives a pretty good idea. Of course the less tracks you have the more it varies. If you have tracks in the hundreds it'll average out much more.
I'd be thinking much lower. The great majority of placements are pennies, not dollars. But you never know!
Old 3rd February 2018
  #11
Quote:
Originally Posted by drBill View Post
Sigh....OK. Go ahead then if you must. But look at your own risk. Much dis-information is available on the internet. Even MORE dis-information if you're willing to pay for it.
Where is the dis-information? It shows actual PRO statements.

And if people aren't willing to take any risk, how do they get any reward? Nothing comes easy, and nothing comes free either. Invest wisely is what I say.
Old 3rd February 2018
  #12
Gear Addict
 

Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by drBill View Post
Sigh....OK. Go ahead then if you must. But look at your own risk. Much dis-information is available on the internet. Even MORE dis-information if you're willing to pay for it.
True. I am totally with you about the channel linked to - not something I would advise investing in. But these two particular videos are interesting.
Old 3rd February 2018
  #13
Quote:
Originally Posted by goodkeys View Post
True. I am totally with you about the channel linked to - not something I would advise investing in. But these two particular videos are interesting.
I am not advising to join Sync My Music either. Keep your money to pay your bills with.

I just say look at the videos and see how much or how little money can be made from a placement. The videos are absolutely free to view! Free I tell ya!
Old 7th February 2018
  #14
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gsilbers's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by goodkeys View Post
Hi everyone

Just a quick question about tv royalties. I am fairly new to the library music business, but since a few month I see regular tv placements coming in on Tunesat. The first PRO statement may still be a while away though. But I'm curious to know what I can expect from it approximately.

So, can anybody give some rough numbers for tv placements (lets say between 10 and 20 seconds of music each, some primetime, some in the morning or afternoon, on a pretty wide array of tv channels (BBC, Channel 4, some french and german tv stations))? How much does one placement pay on a rough average? Or, if that is easier, how many placements do you need approximately to earn 1000$ from them? Just the royalties, not counting the sync fees.

I imagine that it varies pretty widely. But a rough estimation would be enough. It's just to satisfy my curiosity.

the real answer is that its voodoo. yes.. go to miami's little haiti and have a witch consult and he will give you a good answer. a beter answer than anyone here.. and a better answer than anuyone at bmi or ascap or any pro.

it just stinks. it depends... on soooo many things. which pro, becuase they pay differnetly, which channel, which media, which hour, which type of music, which which which.. just go to little haiti for a witch

whats certain is that your 1st placements will be very low. as you start building a reptoir of tracks that have placements then in about 3-5 years it might turn into a good chunk of money. like livable low medium class type of wages or maybe upper poor class for which you need to marry money.
Old 8th February 2018
  #15
Quote:
Originally Posted by goodkeys View Post
I see regular tv placements coming in on Tunesat. The first PRO statement may still be a while away though. But I'm curious to know what I can expect from it approximately.
Also keep in mind Tunesat detections DO NOT equal listings on your royalty statement. I know a composer who gets 1500 detections of one cue every month in a promos for sports on a particular network. Unfortunately it it was only listed as 1 (one) use total on his royalty statement. Why? Because the network when they turned in the cue sheet for the promo, listed on the cue sheet that this promo only aired ONCE!! Yet it is airing 1500 times a month! He has been fighting this with the PRO for a while now and the final answer they gave him was "No, we looked into it and talked to the network and you were paid correctly for the use."

[email protected]?!?##?! It's about $30,000 worth of promo use every month for that one track... he got $40 total... he is looking into taking legal action now because he doesn't know what else to do. he is talking about suing the network for incorrectly filling out the cue sheet and BMI for not correcting it.

Anyway, the only PRO that actually accepts Tunesat detections as a valid proof of use and will pay on the Tunesat detection report is SESAC. BMI and ASCAP will not.

And then BMI and ASCAP both have their different "rules" on what they will actually pay on and what they won't. For example, I believe ASCAP won't pay on college sports but BMI will. And then BMI will only pay if a cue sheet has been turned in while ASCAP only pays for some uses based on their survey system (if your song didn't show up on the survey, you don't get paid even if a cue sheet was turned in, but conversely if a cue sheet wasn't turned in and you show up in the survey you still get paid)... ASCAP pays for background music uses on radio, BMI does not... there are a lot of things one will pay for and the other doesn't...

Also for some types of uses or networks the payment will ALWAYS vary based on how much the network paid the PRO in that Quarter... So even if everything is the same (viewship, time of day, station, etc) two uses of the exact same show can have different amounts from one statement to the next.

And then they both have bonuses built in for certain uses that other uses do not have. BMI has it's hit song bonus and standard bonus, super use and theme song bonus. ASCAP has its Premium Credits and Follow The Dollar factors. These things allow both PROs to favor certain writers or types of writers as they see fit, because while they have those factors across the board, the criteria to "hit" those bonuses changes.
Old 8th February 2018
  #16
I remember some time ago that I contacted the Weather Channel. I was told that they paid royalties to composers on BMI but not ASCAP. That was weird to me.
Old 8th February 2018
  #17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Desire Inspires View Post
I remember some time ago that I contacted the Weather Channel. I was told that they paid royalties to composers on BMI but not ASCAP. That was weird to me.
That probably has to do with the ASCAP surveys vs BMI's pay per cue sheet systems. ASCAP probably doesn't survey the Weather Channel so even though the Weather Channel pays ASCAP, ASCAP does not pay its composers for uses on that channel.

That happens sometimes with ASCAP. It's the downside of the survey system. The upside is sometimes you get paid even if no cue sheet was ever submitted... and if you can caught your uses in the survey MP3s, and ASCAP hadn't paid on those uses yet, they would pay triple to the publisher and composer. Not sure if they are still doing that but that was a great way for library publishers and their composers to make a lot of royalties.
Old 10th February 2018
  #18
Gear Maniac
 

I don't want to be a buzz kill but streaming is in a whole class by itself.

I have tracks on published albums that get less than 1 cent per download.

My friend has tracks on a Netflix documentary viewed by millions and he got about 90 bucks in his ASCAP statement.
Old 10th February 2018
  #19
Gear Maniac
 

Aso, be careful of SCRIPS networks. They usually pay NOTHING!
Old 10th February 2018
  #20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Danny Scott View Post
Aso, be careful of SCRIPS networks. They usually pay NOTHING!
Yes, they buy a direct license from the music library, which absolves them from paying PRO royalties. The music libraries rarely split the direct license money with the composers, so the songwriters get NOTHING.

I think Etch said that if the Scripps shows go into syndication on another network, songwriters would then receive backend royalties. But that takes years.
Old 11th February 2018
  #21
Gear Maniac
 

Yes Desire,

That is correct.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Desire Inspires View Post
Yes, they buy a direct license from the music library, which absolves them from paying PRO royalties. The music libraries rarely split the direct license money with the composers, so the songwriters get NOTHING.

I think Etch said that if the Scripps shows go into syndication on another network, songwriters would then receive backend royalties. But that takes years.
Old 14th March 2018
  #22
Here for the gear
 

There are more Netflix users than cable TV owners in the US. Licensing is screwed.
Old 14th March 2018
  #23
Quote:
Originally Posted by usainmahmud View Post
There are more Netflix users than cable TV owners in the US. Licensing is screwed.
Pretty much.

I cut the cord back in December after the cable company ended our promo rate and jacked up our bill to over $155 just for Internet and cable.

They would not give us any discounts without us losing half of our channels. I promptly removed and returned all cable boxes. I kept the internet and got some Rokus.

Surprisingly, the cable company calls every few weeks to see if we want a new package deal. Nope, not at all.
Old 14th March 2018
  #24
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I have a minuscule library at under 100. I have had about two dozen songs licensed for various things so far. My objective for the rest of 2018 is to ramp up my library by a huge margin. I am by no means close to quitting my full time for music, however, I am able to pay a couple/few bills with it each month. Baby steps...
Old 15th March 2018
  #25
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpikeWolf View Post
I have a minuscule library at under 100. I have had about two dozen songs licensed for various things so far. My objective for the rest of 2018 is to ramp up my library by a huge margin. I am by no means close to quitting my full time for music, however, I am able to pay a couple/few bills with it each month. Baby steps...

That sounds great!

I hope things work out for you. This business is tough, but you could be successful if you continue to build and build your company. You already have some succcess so you have something to build from.
Old 9th May 2018
  #26
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by SpikeWolf View Post
I have a minuscule library at under 100. I have had about two dozen songs licensed for various things so far. My objective for the rest of 2018 is to ramp up my library by a huge margin. I am by no means close to quitting my full time for music, however, I am able to pay a couple/few bills with it each month. Baby steps...
It doesn't matter that much how many tracks you have at any current time in your library career. It matters quite a bit on the standard of the tracks production-wise, the ability the music editors have in syncing them to a films/programmes, the level of distribution and how good your distributors are at their job and much more.
You could have 25 tracks and make fairly good money. You could have 500 tracks and be disappointed. It's very dependent on lots of things, but I would say distribution and sub publishers may be the most important factor provided production values are already good, which should be be a given.
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