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Written by Ramsey Brown.
If you are an extreme Spotify advocate like me, you may have come to the realization that the company constantly has something genius up their sleeve. Of course, I enjoy Spotify for music streaming purposes, but furthermore I really appreciate their innovativeness and ability to stay 3 steps ahead of the music industry at all times.
Spotify has made numerous acquisitions in their time, launching various different branches of the company that go way beyond just streaming. They now have dabbled into the worlds of podcasting, music analytics, live audio chat rooms, and also audio production and music collaboration marketplaces.
As we all know, collaboration and the ability to work with others is a crucial part of what makes the music industry so lucrative. But all too often artists, engineers, songwriters, and producers alike are unable to reach their full potential because they don’t have the right collaborators or connections to make their projects complete.
Shachar Gilan, founder and CEO of SoundBetter recognized this problem but couldn’t understand that if there was such a mutual need for connections on all sides of the music spectrum, why there wasn't a platform or marketplace already established to solve this problem. Well, back in 2005 these sort of websites were not nearly as common as they are today. Gilan then used his previous knowledge in tech, music production, and business to create SoundBetter.
Fast forward to 2019, streaming giant Spotify acquired SoundBetter for an undisclosed amount, adding yet another extremely useful tool for artists to their book. That was just a brief history lesson on the company’s origin and how exactly Spotify came into play. Now that you know the background of the platform, the more important questions arise — What actually is SoundBetter? What can it offer to users? Is it a legit way for musicians to monetize online? Or is the platform a complete waste of time?
Well, we’ve done our research and are here to answer all of these questions in this review. If you are a singer, songwriter, engineer, producer, instrumentalist, or anything in between, keep on reading to learn more about SoundBetter and if the return from the platform will be worth your investment.
SoundBetter is an online marketplace that allows musicians of all types from all across the globe to come together and exchange music services for a fee. SoundBetter has a large database of audio mixers, mastering engineers, professional singers, and many other musicians for hire that anyone can easily find and connect with through their website.
On SoundBetter, you can find exactly what you need to create or finish your own musical masterpiece — all on a professional and safe platform. For further peace of mind, the musicians on that platform are reviewed by their previous clients, so you can read what others had to say about their service before you actually commit to working with them. It’s kind of like Yelp, just for musicians. This way, an artist who wants to inquire about hiring a specific producer will have the assurance that he or she is reliable and has been approved and ranked by previous artists who have worked with that person.
In addition, SoundBetter is in full collaboration with Spotify for Artists. Meaning, approved and verified Spotify Artists are able to post their services on the platform, proving they are vetted by Spotify to ensure they are professional and produce work of high-quality only.
Beyond this, SoundBetter offers services from Grammy, Oscar, and Emmy winners around the world. They offer users the chance to work with premium big name musicians — an opportunity you can not find anywhere else. If you want to work with Kanye West’s producer, Hoobastank’s drummer, Beyonce’s songwriter, Joe Cocker’s bass player, or The Killers’ mixing engineer… you can do this all on SoundBetter.
The operation of SoundBetter is really simple and anyone with musical talent and a minimum budget can access the platform and enjoy all the advantages it has to offer. It could be said that this website has a similar feel to other websites that offer freelance jobs, such as Fiverr or Upwork, where users just register or sign up, set their professional preferences or services they are looking for/can provide, then the search filter will show what options match up and are available for hire.
To start with, the interested artist should log in to the main search page and start searching through the different job options available based on their own preferences: instruments they play, production and musical style. Based on that, he/she will have to choose an artist to propose to work together through a formal invitation (the platform itself has a button to send it) and explain briefly what the musical project would consist of and the approximate budget available to carry it out.
All projects that are carried out through the platform will be securely funded by Soundbetter and all payments will be made via Paypal. This avoids fraud and ensures that all interested parties receive their money in the time and amount agreed at the beginning of each project.
If after that first contact the artists reach a formal agreement and decide to create their own musical project through the platform, both will be able to start sending each other logical files for the development of the work, such as scores, mp3 files, audio recordings, etc. It should be noted that all these files will be protected by the web that will prevent them from ending up in the hands of others who intend to plagiarize and appropriate the work of others.
Finally, when the project is considered finished and ready to be shared on the main social networks and streaming platforms such as Spotify, the funds agreed with the provider will be released via Paypal and the work will be finished. It is important to inform that the platform will always take a small commission for each payment, a minimum and fair percentage that it demands from the artists for providing them with the means and the opportunity to work together on a professional music project.
After that, both artists will be able to continue in contact through the platform for future collaborations and share their work to promote themselves and advertise the platform that has helped them make it happen.
This is perhaps the most important issue for many artists, especially if they are starting out and their economic possibilities to invest are scarce, but do not worry because like other platforms in SoundBetter there are several payment options and even a totally free version with which you can take your first steps without problems.
One of the great attractions of SoundBetter compared to its main competitors is the free version offered to its beginner subscribers, which allows them to include their biography, professional experience and demos so that others can visit their profile and see their work before being encouraged to collaborate with them.
Although all these steps are free indefinitely, if that user gets a job and gets paid, they will still have to pay the 5% commission established by the platform. However, this will only happen if a client invites you, since this plan does not allow you to contact other artists or request to work with them, it simply allows you to expose your work and wait for other paying clients to be interested in it and want to invite you to work together.
The premium plan is full of advantages over the basic plan, something logical given the fee of $50 per month. In this plan you will not only be able to directly send collaboration requests to other artists, but your work will always appear higher in the list of results so that you have more chances to be seen than your main competitors in your specialty. On the other hand, users of this plan are also assured that all their work proposals are previously analyzed by their quality team, something that will allow you to accept a collaboration with more confidence and know if the artist you have chosen is worth it.
SoundBetter is a great concept and can provide many opportunities to musicians who are in the market to collaborate with other musicians. Most any artist could use some extra cash, so why not use any and every platform in order to do so?
As a musician, you can find the right professional to help you finish your songs, including producers, mixing & mastering engineers, singers, songwriters and more, hire and securely pay for services directly through SoundBetter.
Our team at Omari MC definitely recommend you trying out SoundBetter in order to advance your professional career as a musician. Comment below with your experience on the platform, or if you have any other music collaboration platforms that you would suggest to others.
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