What is Merch Music?
Merch Music takes your files (music, art, etc.) and attaches a unique set of codes that point to your file. We format your codes for 1" x 2-5/8" self-stick labels that you distribute to your fans. Your fan will redeem this code from www.merchmusic.com to download your files directly onto their computer or music player. A great way to make money with your music!
Can you give me step-by-step instructions?
1. Upload your .zip file. Get started.
2. We generate unique codes that point to your file, and format customized labels in a PDF file. You get 120 unique codes per order that you can attach to 120 pieces of merch and sell to 120 fans. Each code will allow your fan one download of your files to keep (100mb max). Codes expire after 1 year. (Free code offer gives you 30 unique codes.)
3. You print them on self-stick labels yourself and attach them to your merchandise. You buy 1" x 2-5/8" Avery mailing labels (or similar) and use your own printer. Each 8.5" x 11" sheet yields 30 labels.
4. Charge as much or as little as you want – you keep all the profit. Even if you just charge 25¢, you'll be making money.
5. Fans buy your merch with the attached label and code for downloading your file. End result: fans have your music just as if they bought it online or on a CD (but they also bought your merch)!
Why should I use Merch Music?
- So you can make more money from your music! Even if you sell each code for a quarter, you'll still be making a profit. (Of course we hope you'll charge more – for your own sake!)
- You keep all the profit from your sales.
- Fans don't have to log in or join a community to get your music.
- Attach them to your merchandise (giving both the merch and the music more value).
- Quick turnaround (faster to make than a CD).
- Better for the environment (than CDs or other download cards).
- Download can include a PDF of all your liner notes (or other provided files such as photos, posters, artwork, etc.).
How is Merch Music better than other companies offering similar services?
Merch Music is one of many ways you can sell or distribute your music. Our approach is to make it as SIMPLE as possible for both the fan and the musician, which is why we ask for minimal information when uploading files or redeeming codes. This keeps our prices as low as possible, and we take no percentage of your sale. We provide the functionality so you can use it creatively.
Do you report my sales to SoundScan?
No. You (or your label) are responsible for tracking sales. As a gauge, if you sell around 5,000 downloads or CDs per week, you may have a shot at being on the Billboard 200.
Do you collect fans' email addresses?
No. Many fans may not want to give out their personal information in order to redeem your file. The more hurdles they need to cross, the less likely they are to proceed. One idea is to collect your fans' information at your merch table before you give them the code, or in exchange for it. After they receive the code, they'll have an easy time redeeming it from www.merchmusic.com.
What are some creative ways to attach Merch Music codes to my merchandise?
- T-shirts, Apparel & Accessories (bracelets, belt buckles, etc.)
- Drum sticks/guitar picks/ear plugs
- Pint glasses
- Flying discs
- Mouse pads
- Foot bags
- Include it with your vinyl release
- Add a bonus track to your CD
- Print codes onto tickets/matchbooks/other items
- Fake dog doo & novelty items
- Diapers & personal hygiene products
- Make your merch table a bake sale and put the labels on the food
What can I do with my labels?
- Sell them at a live show and tell your fans about them from the microphone! Let them know what the download contains and where they can purchase it.
- Hold a digital release party.
- Promote a new song, exclusive track, entire album, or your demo.
- Take them on tour.
- Attach one to your press release or one-sheet (easy and inexpensive way to send your music out to get reviewed).
- Put one on the back of your business card.
- Create a business card sized tag with your album art that you can stick your label to (this can be attached to your merch as a hang tag).
- Excellent for creative partnerships.
What type of files should I send?
Audio and artwork. All files should be zipped before uploading. Files will be uploaded "as is." It's advisable to send us mp3s and hi-res PDF files, but acceptable file formats within the .zip include: .mp3 .wav .pdf .jpg .mov .wmv
What is a .zip file and why do I need it?
Zipping a file creates a compressed version of one or more files that is smaller than the original(s). We suggest that you name the .zip file with a name your fans will recognize (such as bandname_albumname.zip) so your fans will know what they're downloading. (Use all lowercase letters and use underscores instead of spaces.)
How do I zip my files?
On a Mac: control-click on the file(s) or folder(s) and then "compress" or "archive." On a PC: right-click the file(s) or folder(s) and then "add to zip" or "add to archive." Depending on what version you have, you may need to install special software.
Should my files be Mac or PC compatible?
Both. You don't know what type of computer your fan is using. As a general rule, you're in control of the file you send your fans – test it out before you send it to us! This is the file your fans will get.
How are the codes sent to me?
Codes will be emailed to you as a PDF file formatted for 1" x 2-5/8" labels.
You print them yourself! We recommend Avery 5260 or 8160, but compatible label stocks include: 5160, 5520, 5630, 5660, 5960, 5970, 5971, 5972, 5980, 6970, 8250, 8460, 8660, 15510, 15660, 18660, 41560, 48160, 48460, 48960, 55160, 58160, as well as other brands. Please note the quantity, color, type of printer (laser/ink jet), and other options before purchasing.
How long does it take to receive my codes?
Up to 2 business days from receipt of acceptable files and payment.
Can I change my files once they've been uploaded?
We charge $9.95 each time we need to go in and update your files.
Do you have a redeem widget I can embed on my website?
No. Redeem widgets are small and can easily get lost on crowded websites. We want your fan to have as easy an experience as possible and know that it will always be visible on www.merchmusic.com. You can create other opportunities for fans to visit your site if you include it within your download, or make it visible on your merchandise. Consider creating a tag (business card size is an easily obtainable format) with your website and album art that you can attach your label to.
Where can I redeem my code?
Can I download a file more than once with the same code?
No. Each unique code entitles you to one download.
What if the code doesn't work?
The code may have expired, the files were already downloaded, or the files didn't comply with our terms and conditions and had to be removed. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with the details of your problem.
What if I have a technical problem downloading the file?
Email the details of your problem to email@example.com. We'll work with you to resolve any technical issues on our end for retrieving the download. The band is responsible for all content provided.
When do my codes expire?
Codes will expire 1 year from the day you receive your codes.
What will happen to my files after the expiration date?
We remove your files from our server. Fans who have downloaded your files will have them on their computer to keep.