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TikTok – Streaming Royalties for Artists | All You Need to Know

Spotify, Apple Music, and Tidal pay royalties to artists, and now TikTok does too.

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This article aims to answer all of your questions about how TikTok royalties work and how to maximize your revenue from the app.

Does Tiktok pay royalties to artists?

Yes. TikTok now pays royalties. After years of allowing billions of streams without paying artists a dime, the app now has licensing deals in place with most music distributors and labels.

How do TikTok royalties work?

The  royalty funds come from TikTok’s revenue. Your distributor will collect your royalties on your behalf, then pay them to you. Each distributor and label has their own deal in place with TikTok that determines how much of the revenue will be paid to their artists for each use in the app.

The quote below from TuneCore provides further detail in how this works. Each distributor will have a different “blanket agreement” with TikTok, however you can expect the basic model TuneCore shares here is the same for your distributor.

“When a subscriber streams your music, you get paid a proportionate share of TikTok’s subscription revenue per month calculated on terms set out in TuneCore’s blanket agreement with the store. Payments will fluctuate each month, depending on the amount of subscription revenue generated and how often your music was streamed.”

How much does TikTok pay?

The exact amount will vary by distributor, and as noted in the quote above, it will fluctuate month to month. In 2020, it’s safe to say that the will be very small. Since TikTok videos are usually 15 seconds long, you can expect that the payments are significantly less than a Spotify stream. However, don’t let this get you down, or think this is a reason not to invest in TikTok promotion.

When will you receive TikTok payments from my distributor?

TikTok reports revenue on a quarterly basis to the distributors, so you can expect to receive royalty reporting and payments after each quarterly report has been received and processed by your distributor. This of course means you will have to wait a few months to see how those TikTok views are translating to royalties…but be patient. They will come.

Will you receive royalties if you upload your songs directly to TikTok?

Negative. To collect royalties the video must use the TikTok snippet of your song that was delivered to the app by your distributor.

Now that you’re up to speed on royalties, it’s time to get moving on your promotional strategy.The first step is getting your music in TikTok. You want to give the app’s 800 million users the ability to make videos with your entire catalog.

Talk to the music matching team to discuss how the highly dynamic Matching Engine can support your systems as new industry developments arise.