How to Sell NFT Music – Make Instant Cash with Your Music

The first royalty agreement in the music industry happened quite some time ago, 1794 in fact.

Many musicians have continued to look for ways to make money with their music, including record label signing, publishing agreements and streaming revenue.

It’s become harder and harder for musicians to earn a fair income through their music, but this could change with the booming NFT industry.

Creating an NFT from music opens up the potential of it being sold to a whole pool of early NFT investors, who are eagerly looking into early venture opportunities, with the hope of earning a good return on their investment.

As the NFT buyer is investing in the musician, it allows the musician to create and publish more music, grow-out their fan-base and do what they do best.

The more popular an artist becomes, so does the value of any NFTs associated with them, and therefore the NFT investor is able to see a return on their purchase.

There are two ways in which a musician can create revenue to launch themselves as an artist through NFTs, both of which I will cover in this article.

Creating an NFT from music can be done very easily, and for a low fee. It is a relatively untapped market right now, so early artists that get in now will have a greater chance of success.

To sell NFT music you will need to:

  1. Create a digital music file, such as MP3, of your track
  2. Design the artwork
  3. Open a digital wallet, such as MetaMask
  4. Purchase cryptocurrency to pay the gas fee
  5. Use the OpenSea NFT Creator tool to mint the NFT
  6. Set a purchase price and list the NFT for Sale
  7. Market and promote on social media or website

A music file, such as an MP3, can be created as an NFT using a free online tool or service such as the OpenSea NFT Creator. Artwork is also required. A gas fee payment to mint an NFT is needed, so a digital wallet such as MetaMask should be created. The NFT can be listed for sale in either Ethereum or Polygon.

In this article we will walk through a real life case study and turn an MP3 file in to a fully live NFT on the Ethereum blockchain and list it for sale.

Creating NFT Music – A Real Case Study

Rather than theoretically explaining the process, in this tutorial we are going to create NFT music!

We are going to take an actual music track, design artwork for the front cover, mint the NFT on OpenSea, on the Ethereum blockchain, and list it for sale.

Create the Music File

The standard format to create NFT music is an MP3 file.

There are hundreds of online tutorials covering how to create music digitally but as this article is focusing on creating an NFT,I’ll assume you have your MP3 file ready to go.

If your music is in a different format, such as MP4 or WAV, these can be uploaded too.

You just need to know in which folder your MP3 file is stored on your PC, laptop, or MAC. The ‘My Music’ folder works well, but where you choose to store the music file is up to you.

Create the Artwork

To sell your music NFT, you’ll need artwork for your album or track.

You wouldn’t walk into a record store and see all the sleeve covers blank. The artwork is there to create an emotion, mood or feeling, and as much effort should go in to your NFT artwork as it would if you were designing a record or CD cover.

If you are a graphical artist, you may want to decide the cover of your track yourself using Photoshop or other software such as Adobe.

For the non-artists among you, there are gig services and providers on marketplaces such as Fiverr that can design your album cover for you. This can be a relatively low-cost option, with music artwork ranging from $10 to $300+.

Another option is Canva.

Canva is a great tool that allows you to create your own artwork using templates, shapes, fonts, photos, and elements. It only needs a little creative flair to design something more than suitable.

Here is a design I created in 5 minutes using Canva:

The Wandering Star Music NFT Artwork

With more time spent it’s possible to put together some amazing creations, but for now we will use this design to create our music NFT.

Create the Music NFT

In this section we are going to mint the NFT.

Minting the NFT simply means we are going to create it. This process creates the non-fungible token, meaning it can’t be split or divided and will be unique in the Ethereum blockchain.

There are other blockchains available, which I will discuss in the next section, but for this example we are going to use the Ethereum blockchain network as it is the most popular.

To do this we will use the free OpenSea NFT Creator tool which can be found using this link:

Upload Music File

The first step is to browse to, and upload, your MP3 (or MP4, WAV etc.) digital music file.

Upload Music File

Upload Artwork

The ‘Preview Image’ upload area, to upload your artwork, isn’t visible at first but will appear as soon as you upload a digital music file in the previous step.

Browse to, and upload, your digital artwork from your PC or MAC.

Name, External Link and Description

The Name field is completely up to you, but it is recommended to include the track name, and possibly the artist, but this is personal choice.

The External Link field is only relevant if you have your own website, with a specific webpage about the NFT. If you do then add the website address here, if not leave as it is.

The Description field is where you can explain about the track, the story behind it, what it means to you and anything that helps the listener relate to the track.

Collection Details

The Collection Name is where you can create the name of your NFT collection, whether it is just one track or an entire series

The Properties, Levels and Stats fields can, in the main, be ignored for music NFTs. These fields are usually set aside for digital image traits and rarity items. They can be used for music NFTs of course and are completely optional. Please complete these fields if there are relevant to your NFTs, if not leave the fields as they are.

The Unlockable Content field is optional, but this can be used, for example, to provide a unique password or key to unlock exclusive password protected music or content only available for the NFT Holder. This field can only be viewed by the NFT holder. I have added an example here for reference, but if this is not applicable to your music NFT then leave this field blank.

The Explicit and Sensitive field should be selected if this is applicable to your music, if not leave it deselected.

Supply and Blockchain

Supply and Blockchain

The Supply field is simply the number of music MFTs you are minting using this digital music file and artwork. Unless you intend to sell multiple copies of the same track, leave this as 1.

The Blockchain field has just two options available right now for music NFTs, but more are due soon. Ethereum and Polygon are selectable options. In this case study we will choose Ethereum, but we will look at different Blockchain options shortly and how to choose the best one for your music NFT.

The Freeze Metadata field isn’t changeable and is just there to tell you that it is not possible to change the information you provide once the NFT has been created. It will be set in stone forever more.

Mint and Create

Mint and Create

The Create button should be selected when you’ve entered all the details of your NFT.

This is where your NFT will be minted (created) and will exist on the blockchain and you’ll be provided a link to see your new music NFT creation!

Music NFT is Created

Choosing a Blockchain

The three main blockchains for minting and creating a music NFT are Ethereum, Polygon and Solana.

The most expensive for gas fees is the Ethereum network, which is considerably higher than Polygon and Solana.

The Ethereum blockchain though has the highest number of NFT buyers, and so with a larger pool of potential investors it is often the blockchain selected most often.

The costs are higher on Ethereum but not ridiculously high like they used to be.

In 2021 the average Ethereum gas charge was $118, although this could be as high as $350 or more. In 2022 the average Ethereum gas charge has dropped to around $25.

This is in part due to the ongoing development by the Ethereum developers to make the blockchain transactions more efficient, and move to a Proof of Stake concept.

The Bear market of Spring 2022 has also seen drop in demand for NFT trading and cryptocurrency purchasing, and because gas fees are driven by supply and demand, it therefore means gas fees drop as a result.

In comparison, the gas fees on Solana and Polygon are just a few cents.

The primary choice of blockchain is often Ethereum. This has by far the biggest number of cryptocurrency holders. Ethereum is the core cryptocurrency used by the OpenSea marketplace – which is the largest NFT marketplace as of today.

The second choice is the Polygon blockchain, as the gas fees are lower. The OpenSea NFT marketplace can thought still be used, capturing a large pool of potential buyers.

The third choice is the Solana blockchain. This uses an NFT marketplace such as Magic Eden and Solanart, although OpenSea compatibility is coming soon. The gas fees are low, but they don’t quite have the same number of buyers as OpenSea, so the barrier to entry into this market is a little higher and more in-depth.

For beginners, the Ethereum blockchain using OpenSea is the best option.

Selling NFT Music on OpenSea

Fortunately, OpenSea makes the selling of an NFT a very straight forward process.

If we look at the music NFT we have created, you will see a large blue ‘Sell’ button, as shown in the screenshot below:

Sell the Music NFT Button

By selecting this option OpenSea will ask us a few questions before we can list our music NFT for sale.

Sell NFT Options

Fixed Price or Auction

There are two list types available, a Fixed Price or Auction style listing.

Auction listings are good if you already have a large following and know there will be a demand for each music NFT you list for sale.

This allows you to run an auction, with an end date, and sell to the highest bidder.

If though you do not have a large following and will try and promote your music NFT on your website, blog, or social media channels, then a Fixed Price listing is probably the best option for you.

End Date

Here you can define for how long you want the NFT to be on sale for.

You can choose to set a date far in to the future, or just have up for sale for a day or two.

Tip: There is a gas fee payable if an NFT is removed earlier from sale than the end date set. If though the NFT goes past the end sale date, it is automatically removed from sale and no additional gas fee is payable. So choosing the right end date for the sale of your NFT can save money in the longer term.

Set a Price

Now is the time to set a price for your music NFT.

The price is set in the cryptocurrency of the blockchain, so as we chose the Ethereum blockchain in this example, the cryptocurrency price is set in Ethereum.

It is always best to set a higher price for your NFT than you expect to sell for.

This is because it is free to reduce the price of an NFT for sale, but if you want to increase the NFT price later, you will need to delist the NFT which incurs a gas fee, and list again for sale at a higher amount – which will incur another gas fee!

Set a higher-than-expected NFT price, and then reduce the price without gas fees if you need to.

List for Sale

Once you have completed all the fields, and pressed the List button, your MetaMask wallet should open where it will ask you to confirm the approval of the gas fee to list your music NFT for sale.

If you are happy to accept the gas fee, confirm on your MetaMask wallet, and your NFT will now be listed for sale, ready for it to be promoted to the world!

Marketing Music NFTs

The most challenging aspect of selling NFTs isn’t the technology, it’s the marketing and promotion.

The top three places to promote an NFT for sale is Twitter, Instagram and TikTok.

This is excluding of course your own website if it has traffic, music-based forums, Reddit channels, SoundCloud and more.

The best way to market and promote NFTs as a musician is to build a following, build yourself as your artist and brand, and start creating a fan base.

This can be done on the platforms mentioned, but TikTok works really well for this right now.

Instagram is also a possibility now that more videos are being featured. This is probably Instagram’s attempt to try to combat the rising growth of the TikTok platform, which is now the most visited website in the world.

Marketing is about storytelling, so tell your story and articulate it through your music.

Music reflects one-self, and this together with a personal brand brings fans and a following.

It can be slow at times, especially at the start of your journey, but once you have an audience you have a way to sell NFTs to your fans and let then become part of your journey and be rewarded for your success.

NFT buyers right now are getting fed up with apes, goblins and Degen projects which crash a few days after launching, or become another rug pull.

Being able to invest into something which would earn NFT investors future passive income through a revenue share of your music is one such way to pull investors in.

If this is something you are struggling to do alone, there are services that can help with this.

Why launch music NFTs

Music NFTs have the potential to completely disrupt the current music industry.

With musicians being able to launch their own careers, manage their own music and crowdfund a launch using NFTs, it means not only do they gain much more control and be able to better connect with their fan base, but they will also collect more of their royalty share.

Even a 50% share of a music track with an NFT holder means you as a musician would make a lot more money than signed to a record label.

With a fanbase of just 5,000 each buying an NFT with a value of $150, this provides you as an artist with $750,000 in startup capital to launch yourself as a musician.

Not all NFTs need to be the same.

Using the ‘Properties’ section during the NFT creation process on OpenSea, it is possible to set some rare properties against a limited number of NFTs.

These rarer NFTs could provide very exclusive features like front row concert tickets, or a one-on-one video call with a fan every six months, or a free airdrop of every new album going forward.

The possibilities of giving back to the community, and loyal fans that supported you, are endless.

These rare NFTs can be sold for a higher amount. Therefore, using a combination of standard NFTs and rare NFTs it is possible to sell out an NFT collection of music for $1million.

If though you have reached here, are intrigued but feel the process is too daunting, there are one or two music NFT services set up to help you get started.

Music NFT Services

With the industry on the brink of change, there are several online NFT music services helping musicians get started.

They will create and mint the NFTs for you, allowing you to just get on and build your fanbase.

For the service they provide they will charge a fee of some kind, often this will be by way a small recurring revenue from any music NFTs they create. The fee structure is dependent on the service you choose.

One such company is whose current roster of artists includes a collaboration with Eminem and offer an NFT minting service for musicians.

Artists give away a percentage of streaming revenue for tracks across several NFTs.

For example, the Royce Da 5’9” collaboration with Eminem for the track Caterpillar, is giving away 35% of future streaming revenue across 753 NFTs, using three different tiers.

Tier 1: Gold NFT owners (500 in total) are each given a 0.0222% share of the future streaming revenue at a cost of $79.

Tier 2: Platinum NFT owners (250 in total) are each given a 0.0884% share of the future streaming revenue at a cost of $299 – and these NFT holders are granted access to exclusive content.

Tier 3: Diamond NFT owners (3 in total) are each given a 0.5915% share of the future streaming revenue at a cost of $1,999 – and these NFT holders are given access to an in-person writing session with Royce Da 5’9” himself!

Therefore, fans will want to own NFTs from their favorite artists, to feel closer and more associated to them and this is why rare NFTs will continue to hold value if they contain exclusive access to the artist that only the NFT holder can get.

This service isn’t just for any artist though, it appears you need a following or be known in the industry, but there will be other services launching soon that will allow any musicians to easily mint their NFTs.

Therefore, music NFTs will become very big in the near future. The industry is in its very early stages and gives not only musicians but NFT buyers, and fans alike, a great opportunity.

Selling Music NFTs – In Conclusion

Musicians are not just creating NFTs of their music, they are creating value for fans and investors.

This could be by providing a percentage of streaming revenue from the track, which is something that will attract NFT music investors, or exclusive content including direct access to you, which is something that will attract fans.

With music companies taking up to 95% of new artists royalties until the initial record contract funding has been recouped, it can take a long time for artists to earn a good income.

Launching music NFTs is a great opportunity to collect more of the revenue, and share this revenue with loyal supporters whilst giving them exclusive access or royalty revenue shares.

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