Updated: Jun 21, 2021
Music for TV and Film is not the same as releasing music on your favorite DSP. Getting attention of the music supervisor community is not easy in a crowded music environment. Here are 5 things you can do to stand out, increase your chances of getting noticed, and land those lucrative placements.
1. Stop skipping over the commercials - A top ad placement can be worth six figures easily. Especially for indie artists. Listen to the ads, and Shazam them. Dissect the songs, and try to understand why they work. Instrumentation, tempo, gender, and lyrical content. You will start to see patterns emerge. You will also learn quickly how each brand has a unique sonic identity. iSpot.tv is another great resource
2. Subscribe to IMDB Pro - Search the shows that you can picture your music on. Research who the music supervisor is, find them on IG or any social media, and follow them. Like their posts, and start creating awareness. Don’t send your music yet, or reach out via DM. That’s tacky. You’re still fact-finding.
3. Collaborate…A LOT!! - Even though you might think you can do it all yourself (and you probably can)…collaborating is more fun, and it’s a way to improve your skills. It’s also a way to have another person help when promoting your music.
4. Release your songs - Music supervisors are always scouring the deepest depths of the internet to find something new and fresh. If your music is not available, it can’t be discovered. My first real sync came from an artist who had posted a song we did on his MySpace page. AT&T licensed it and gave us $100k for it!
5. Always…and I mean ALWAYS bounce multiple versions of your songs once they are done production - Sync moves fast! If they like your song, they’ll ask for stems. Stems are typically a full mix, TV Mix (full mix minus any lyrical vocals…typically whoahs and hoo hoo’s are good), and an Instrumental mix. Also, make sure you have MP3 and WAV files ready to go. Typically if they request stems, you know they are going to be presenting a cut of their spot with your song!! If all the assets aren’t ready, you might miss it. BONUS: Supervisors typically don’t like a demo or a work in progress. They move fast and don’t have time to massage productions with you. Make your best first impression.
BONUS TIP: Don’t send music that isn’t specifically requested in a brief. If someone is asking for quirky female pop with 808’s…don’t send them anthemic male arena rock. Stick to the brief. Anything outside of that will only annoy them and get you on the naughty list : )
Keep making them hits!!!