Making a product
With so many online stores to choose from, it can be difficult to make sure that your music reaches as many people as possible. To make matters easier, a number of distribution companies offer aggregation services, which simplify the process of getting your tracks into online stores.
One that you can use at home in your own time is Rebeat, a German service based around proprietary software which guides you through the upload process step-by-step. Rebeat will distribute your tracks to a huge number of online stores, including iTunes, Beatport, eMusic, Musicload, Napster and countless others around the world. The software does costs €99 but that price includes free lifetime updates so it could pay for itself quickly if you have a hit - especially if you’re using it to run your own label.
Here’s how it works:
Step 1: Rebeat contains four pages: Product Data, Audio Import, Track Data and Promotion. The Product Data page is where you enter the main information about the album or single you’re trying to sell and the numerous tracks it contains. At this point Rebeat guides you through the process of uploading artwork, entering a title, artist name and all the details. It costs one Euro to upload a track but each track also requires an ISRC which also costs one Euro. Each product must also have an EAN (barcode number), which will set you back another five Euro but the same EAN can then be used for physical releases.
Step 2: There are two optional extras available on the Product Data page which may be added before you upload your files. For an additional €35, you can order product prioritisation which will help push your tracks into the stores quicker. Alternatively, for another €6, you can make your release eligible for the German charts. Now that’s tempting. The Audio Import page is so straightforward it barely needs explanation. Simply select the WAV files you want to upload and then choose the running order for the product. After this, you can go to the Track Data page and start entering full details for each track.
Promoting your music
Step 3: With all the tracks chosen and metadata entered, the Promotion page can be accessed, allowing you to add flyers and any further product information that could help your music stand out. Remember, artwork is still important even in this digital age. You need to convey the style of your music (and how great it is) visually if you’re going to earn that click and a potential sale.
Paid in full
Step 4: Once your tracks are in the stores, you can track sales through the Rebeat software and you’ll also receive monthly download reports by email. As soon as your download revenue hits €50, Rebeat will pay you by bank transfer or Paypal. Overall, Rebeat is much easier than trying to sell your music manually through each online store. Rebeat doesn’t guarantee fame and fortune, but overall it’s highly recommended as an easy way of getting your music out to the widest possible audience.
Want to try Rebeat for free?
MusicRadar has teamed up with Sonic8, the exclusive UK distributor of Rebeat, to offer you three free track uploads via Rebeat. This promotion includes everything you’ll need: three ISRC codes, one EAN code, three storage fees - it’s all you’ll need for your first digital single release. Simple head to rebeatdigital.com and key in the following code on the second page: 26B71EAD9BV. Follow the instruction online to sign up and good luck with your first release!