How to make money songwriting

If you are good at writing music, you have an opportunity to make money by selling your talent as a service to musicians. You can contribute to melody, lyrics, or song structure to be considered a songwriter.

In the current age of TikTok viral videos, Youtube, and on-demand video content, you have plenty of opportunities to make money as a songwriter. You can write songs for upcoming artists, get a publishing deal, get your songs placed with big artists, or even get paid for demoing your songs. 

If you are looking for ways to earn the top dollar from your songwriting talent, read on to learn the various ways to make money songwriting.

9 ways to make money songwriting

Songwriting is a competitive niche, and you must keep up with the trends in the music industry to stay relevant. Here are ways to make money as a songwriter: 

Put your name in the spotlight.

The first thing you should do is to get visible as a songwriter. Do you know Tori Kelly? You should if you’re an aspiring songwriter. 

Tori gained her first recognition after posting her own songs and videos on YouTube as a teenager. Now she is a Hollywood star! 

As a songwriter, you should be “found.” Create an online presence on Youtube and Social Media, and build a following. You can start by making short videos on TikTok, or sharing parts of your song on Youtube to create a following among your fan base. 

Write for artists

You can make money from songwriting by writing songs for upcoming artists. Start by looking for artists who make music in the same genre as you’re writing about. Come up with a list of artists, bands, and producers who need writers. 

You can attend networking events that are frequented by other music industry professionals. Pitch your music to these networks and share your ideas with them when you attend industry events and conferences. 

You can also use platforms like SongwriterLink or to connect with artists. Additionally, you can contact artists who might be interested in using your songs and lyrics. 

If you’re in the RnB genre, focus on RnB fans and artists. You should be able to woo potential clients with a broad collection of hit songs they can listen to. This won’t be difficult if you have one or two good songs and are determined to exhibit them to prospective artists and bands.

Get publishing deals

You can also earn money as a songwriter by entering into a publishing agreement with a music publishing company. The company will be in charge of marketing, promoting, and collecting royalties on your behalf for your songs. 

A portion of the royalties earned from your songs will go to you. The rest goes to the company. Remember, you’ll be given a deal if you regularly write and deliver good hit songs. Building a portfolio that will impress your publishing company.

You can display your songwriting prowess by recording top-notch songs and providing them as a demo. When asked to give a presentation, strive to present yourself in the best possible act. Make sure to give them your best performance.

Music Licensing

Besides signing a publishing deal, you can license your music. This can be a good source of income, primarily if your music is used in a popular production. 

You can use companies such as Musicbed or AudioJungle to connect with potential clients. They will connect you with brands that are always searching for background music to use in TV shows, films, commercials, and video games.

Live performances

You can write your songs, play them at live shows and other events, and charge admission fees for them. This is one of the most lucrative methods of how to make money songwriting. It allows you to interact directly with your fans and build an audience for yourself. 

Additionally, you can make money by touring and performing as a supporting act for other artists. This will assist you in marketing and advertising your songwriting skills. You gain visibility that may open doors to opportunities on greater platforms.

Write jingles

Businesses often hire songwriters to write jingles for their products or services. They will need an intro or background song for their commercials or other promotional materials. 

Many smaller businesses choose to collaborate with writers directly rather than paying for the services of expensive mediators like licensing and publishing firms. This gives you a high chance of earning even more without sharing it with a licensing or publishing company. If you do it well, you can rake in good earnings from the royalties generated from jingles.

Teach others

You can make money as a songwriter by teaching others how to become songwriters and excel in their craft. You can spice up your lesson by teaching your students how to play the guitar, ukulele, piano, and other musical instruments. 

You can offer workshops, classes, and tutoring services either online or in person. This is a good way to get passive income while still using your time creatively.

Sell your own music

You can sell your music on platforms like iTunes, Amazon Music, Bandcamp, and other online music stores. You can also sell physical copies of your music at live shows. Your music should have a persuasive tonality that creates an emotional connection with your listeners. 

You can be amazed at how many sales a persuasive tone can get you. This drives more sales and generates more streams on streaming platforms, leading to higher royalties for you as a songwriter!

Sell merchandise

Lastly, you can sell merchandise related to your music, such as T-shirts, CDs, and posters. This will make you money and is also a way to market yourself. 

Participate in a songwriting contest.

You can also make money by participating in songwriting contests. There are a lot of songwriting contests happening every year or between months, which you can check online. For example, the International Songwriting Competition (ISC) happens annually. A songwriting contest is a great way to earn cash, prizes, recognition, and exposure. 


It’s important to remember that making a living as a songwriter can be difficult, and it may take time and persistence to build up a steady income stream. However, hard work and persistence make it possible to make a living as a songwriter.

You can use your songwriting talent to make an extra source of income. Whether you’re a seasoned songwriter or just getting started, there are a few steps you can take to make sure you’re getting the most out of your work. 

Spend time learning about the music industry to ensure you’re headed in the right direction for success. With the appropriate strategy, you can make your musical talent a reliable source of income.

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