As you may already notice, social media are the most widely used platforms when sharing any audiovisual content.
In fact, Youtube is currently the largest video distribution platform on the Internet, as it offers you as a creator the possibility of earning money and offers companies a means to achieve a wide promotion of their products or services.
The importance of music when it comes to editing videos is more than clear since a video without music is unthinkable today.
Best Royalty-Free Music Subscription:
|EPIDEMIC SOUND||Subscription: From 9€ /month.|
However, placing music in your videos goes far beyond choosing a free song and downloading it, because:
- Almost all music is protected by so-called copyrights.
- If you use free music on the Internet you won’t be able to monetize your videos and you have the risk of Youtube automatically detecting it with its algorithm called Content ID.
In this context that we distinguish two types of musical content:
- Protected rights.
What’s the difference between royalty-free and protected rights music?
Royalty-free music doesn’t mean that it is free and that we are free to use it.
What it means is that with a one-time license fee you have the legal opportunity to use that music freely and as many times as you want, but always within the parameters set by the license itself.
For music with protected rights, you must pay royalties depending on the number of times you use the music.
That’s why many major companies and Youtube channels prefer royalty-free music, because it avoids paying a royalty that would increase their production costs considerably and because they can use these songs in an unlimited and worry-free way.
Many times when we talk about royalty-free music, many people think it is free, which is wrong.
However, it is true that there are certain licenses in particular that do not entail any costs:
- Music under Public Domain: Music that no author or owner of such music content has chosen to protect or the time has already expired.
- Creative Commons Music: is music protected by its author, but that allows some uses for free.
However, to use Creative Commons music you will need to meet a number of requirements:
- Attributing the original author of the work, mentioning him/her.
- Not using it for commercial use or monetization.
- Do not publish derivative works or covers.
- If derivative works are created, they should be easily shared.
What happens if I use free music?
No matter what type of music you use, the important thing is that it is properly licensed depending on the use you want to make of it.
If you use free music the consequences can be very different.
Taking Youtube as an example, the penalties for misuse of music content are varied.
I suppose you know what Content ID is: it’s Youtube’s automatic algorithm for detecting content that is using copyrighted music without its respective licenses.
If you use free music without a license, you may have one or more of these penalties:
- Delete the video automatically and send an alert to your account.
- Mute the music in that part of the video.
- Gives half of the revenue generated by the video to the legal author of the music.
- Place advertising on your video without giving the benefits of it to you.
- Restrict the video to certain locations or regions.
- Blocks content on some platforms or media.
Therefore, if you want to create any kind of video on Youtube or another social network or platform, you must be very careful when getting the background music.
In fact, Youtube is not one of the most restrictive in that sense, since it also penalizes with other less severe punishments than deleting the flagged video.
There are many other social networks that are very categorical in that sense: a clear example is Facebook or Instagram, which if they detect that there has been a misuse of music in terms of copyright, they do not hesitate to remove it immediately from your platform without prior notice.
In order to avoid all these unpleasant consequences when uploading a video, in this article I will tell you about the best platforms dedicated to the sale of songs with their respective licenses.
Best Royalty-Free Music Subscription Websites
Some of these platforms offer annual or monthly subscriptions (you pay once a month or a year and can use their entire music catalog), while others prefer to focus on selling individual song licenses or sound effects.
Among them, there is a great diversity of prices, which we appreciate since they adapt to any type of pocket. In many cases, a free trial version is offered for several days.
Let’s look at and compare the best platforms:
|EPIDEMIC SOUND||Subscription: From 13€ /mo.|
|AUDIIO||$16.60/month or $299 lifetime|
|ARLIST.IO||Subscription: 16.6€/ month|
|AUDIOJUNGLE||Individual songs: From $26/ song|
|PREMIUM BEAT||Individual songs: From $49/ song|
|MUSICBED||Individual songs: From 42€/ song|
|SONGFREEDOM||Subscription: $60/ mo|
And let’s see the characteristics of each one:
Epidemic Sound is a platform with a service called “Youtube subscription” that is 100% aimed at youtubers and is characterized by the following:
- More than 30,000 music tracks and more than 60,000 sound effects.
- None of the music in this subscription will cause you any licensing issues.
- All your videos can be monetized.
- Continuous updating of the song library.
Subscription costs range from €13/month for channels with 0-500,000 monthly visits, €27/month for channels with up to 5 million monthly visits and €125/month for an unlimited number of visits.
Elements is perhaps the largest royalty-free music platform on the Internet.
It allows you to listen to and download unlimited music easily, as well as sound effects, thanks to its monthly subscription.
It costs $16.50/month for all kinds of uses of music online. But if you need to use background music in broadcasts or radio and television commercials, as well as cinema, you must acquire it through its second brand, Audiojungle.
Audiio has a payment system that will surprise anyone, as they offer a lifetime music option, so you can pay once and get music for life! And those songs are not only to be used in social media, you can use the music in any film, video, podcast, video game project on any platform in the world.
Once you purchase the lifetime membership you will have access to download any song on audiio.com for life (well, technically for the next 100 years). That includes songs that are on the platform today as well as songs that will be added in the future.
Their subscription cost is $16.60/month or $199 billed annually, but if you go for the lifetime music option, you pay $299 just once.
It is another platform that has been incorporated into the song sale market with its respective licenses for use relatively recently.
It is characterized by a good search system, with an easy-to-use interface and different filters, among which one made especially for video editors stands out since it classifies the music according to the type of video that can be used.
Their subscription cost is 16.6€ per month, but they also have a Personal Plan for $9.99 per month, tailored for Social media creators
Premium Beat is a platform owned by Shutterstock which has created one of the best markets for professionals to license their visual, musical and audiovisual content and access to a wealth of tools that help the creative process.
For a long time, Premium Beat, whose key factor has always been based on the passion of all its different professional profiles, has been one of the best options for video editors, either because of its payment system, a large number of soundtracks it offers or the quality of the songs, as the selection of songs is done manually.
Prices start at $49 per song.
Snapmuse is a relatively new platform dedicated to creators of the digital world.
You can download or listen to any of the 13,000+ music tracks in the catalog and feature them in your creations without licensing problems. Monetization of your content is also included. The website is easy to use and the music is categorized by mood, genre, or area of usage.
The subscription costs $9/month if you pay annually. You can also pay as you go.
Soundstripe is characterized, among other things, by offering songs of the highest quality.
Their library is constantly updated, so if you want your videos to be always up to date in terms of music, this is a very good option, as it usually includes between 150 and 250 new songs every month.
Their mission is very much in the interest of video editors, as they themselves believe that their goal is to “keep creators creating”. In addition, it already has the support of renowned companies such as Amazon, Microsoft or Tesla, among others.
Its price is $115 a year.
This partner of the company Videblock is a platform dedicated to the sale of music, sound effects and loops.
Their library is a bit more traditional in terms of songs than the previous website. However, it is still extensive, with more than 100,000 soundtracks.
One of the best features of Storyblocks is found in its search system, as it is very easy to use and has many filters with which to customize your music searches.
Its subscription service costs €180 per year.
Musicbed is one of the platforms with the highest quality.
It offers a very pleasant search system, as well as having, perhaps not the largest library of all, but one of the most varied in terms of content, which will undoubtedly make you find the type of music you are looking for.
They are supported by companies such as McLaren, Amazon, Netflix, Microsoft, Facebook, National Geographic, Samsung, Land Rover, McDonald’s, Nike, etc.
In addition, Music Bed knows how to connect very well with its users, as it chooses to focus its message on the emotional side of music to create a strong bond with them.
Their individual licenses start from €42 per song.
Songfreedom is working to change its name to FyrFly. This platform bases its ideology on the fact that it gives support to artists: “artists supporting artists”.
In 2010 Songfreedom started its business as a platform that allowed artists to sell their songs so that professional publishers could use them when producing their videos.
One of the strong points of this platform is that it features mainstream songs by artists such as Christina Perri, Jason Mraz, Philip Philips, One Republic, Maroon 5, The Lumineers and Bob Dylan.
In addition, like Audioblock and Premium Beat it offers the possibility of obtaining sound effects.
Its price is $60 per month, paid annually.
With this article, I suppose you’ve made it pretty clear what problems can arise from misusing music in your videos.
However, in this case, I have only presented the consequences you would receive from the platform or social network. If the original author or the record label that owns the content takes the matter seriously, it could even file a lawsuit and take legal action.
So, with a large number of online platforms dedicated to selling songs with their respective licenses, I honestly think it’s silly to play it this way.
In addition, you have websites with very different prices, which allows you to make one decision or another depending on the budget you have.
When it comes to choosing between one platform or another you can also look at the type of video you want to publish, the number of users you want to reach, the characteristics or personality of your target audience and, above all, as we said before, your budget.
As for the best website of all, leaving the conditions and objectives of each, if you want to get individual songs for your videos, the best option would be Audiojungle, as it offers the most high-quality songs and different types of licenses.
If what we want is one that offers a subscription service, I would definitely stay with Epidemic Sound, as it is directly focused on Youtube users, has an affordable price and the quality of the music has nothing to envy to any other premium platform.
However, these preferences are somewhat subjective, since, as I was announcing at the beginning of this article, we are talking about the best platforms dedicated to the sale of songs with their respective licenses for use in the market.
But wait! There’s another option that we haven’t talked about it yet. What about hiring a composer specifically to make you a tailored song? Isn’t that very expensive? The answer is no, nowadays you can hire freelance composers very easily, with platforms like Twine.
It’s worth taking a look at!