- Jeff Greene
Songfreedom Creates New Pricing Approach Tailor-Made for the New World of Content Creation and Legal
Songfreedom has a new way of pricing songs, to serve more diverse audiences with a wider range of budgets. With its growing catalog of licensed, legal music for marketers and filmmakers, Songfreedom now sets different rates for different users, creating affordable alternatives to piracy and letting people use their favorite hits, not knock-off tracks. It reflects a major shift in music usage toward rapidly evolving individual use on video platforms and apps, which demand new frictionless solutions to licensing music.
Offering close to 100 different pricing scenarios makes these solutions available to more precise market segments. “People from all walks of life actually want to license music, so we’re pricing it to encourage that,” said Songfreedom CEO Matt Thompson.
As video technology gets easier and more ubiquitous, sound-to-image licensing is still dominated by convoluted negotiations and unpredictable prices. Songfreedom is the first and largest company to provide turnkey solutions that allow the songs everyone knows and loves to be legally and publicly shared—so video creators encounter less hassle, and rights holders get more income.
“Developing these pricing options is our response to two trends,” continued Thompson. “One, casual music consumers are learning about licensing and piracy and their own responsibility to be honest and lawful. And two, we have so many different kinds of customers now”—not just wedding videographers and independent cinematographers, but teenage vloggers, priests on mission trips, corporate trainers, non-profit fundraisers, realtors, podcasters, Instagram users, marketers, ad agencies, and more.
Here’s how it works: A prospective customer wants to add a favorite track to a video--say, Maroon 5’s “Sunday Morning,”--and goes to Songfreedom to find out more about licensing. When she clicks the “buy” button, Songfreedom asks her to declare her purpose and identify herself as an individual, non-profit, or corporation. Songfreedom takes it all into account and then shows whether “Sunday Morning” is available to her and for how much. Some songs’ licenses cost as little as $15, while others cost up to $1500.
Even with multi-layered tiers of pricing, some high-end users require songs not yet in Songfreedom’s catalog. Thompson works to acquire the rights if possible, usually for limited use and timeframe. “We know who the players are,” commented Thompson, “and we can get ahold of them quickly, understanding what kinds of rights are in play—mechanical, master, neighboring, or publishing.”
Songfreedom acquires, bundles, and sells music synchronization rights to videographers, photographers, and other professional clients. Founded in 2010, it expands soundtrack possibilities for a wide range of uses, audiences, and budgets to include legally licensed songs—from new indie tracks to Top-40 hits. It’s the first company to offer pre-cleared sync licenses from labels like Universal Music Group, Sony, and Warner Music Group; and large publishers like Universal Music Publishing Group, Sony/ATV, Warner/Chappell, Kobalt, BMG, Disney, Downtown, and Roundhill. Songfreedom makes it possible for everyday people to use great music in videos without the unwieldy, expensive process of obtaining rights, and it’s all available online.