Top Tips To Get Your Music Placed In Movies, TV Shows, Video Games & Commercials by Clyde Smith

EntourageRecently both Hypebot and Music Think Tank posted a number of interviews with music supervisors and related industry figures on getting your music placed in movies, tv, video games and commercials. Here are the top tips and insights from those posts organized into five categories. The names of the supervisors are featured with a link back to each post which will have additional information of interest.

The key concepts are to understand how the process works, to present your work in a manner that music supervisors prefer and to make sure you have a visible audience and a strong web presence.

Do Your Research

Sarah Gavigan

“You need to do some well thought out research. Find a show or brand that you like and work backwards. Look up the Music Supervisor online, and learn a little bit about them before reaching out. Are you thinking of a certain brand you think your music might be good for? With good research, you can find the name of the ad agency, and then the name of the music producer or creative director at that agency that works on that brand.”

Gary Calamar

“To get onto one of my TV shows, do music that’s appropriate for one of my shows…do your homework to see what kind of music I use on these projects and to pitch music to me that is appropriate.”

Josh Kessler

“Read trade magazines and blogs, as well as developer and distributor websites. Production timelines for games are very long, so keep in mind music decisions are usually made about 8 or 9 months before the game is released.”

Find Intermediaries

Thomas Golubic

“The smartest way in general is for people to reach out to licensing representatives, because licensing representatives will do specific searches based on specific criteria we will send out to them, and they themselves become filters.”

Sarah Gavigan

“Join music libraries that can help distribute your music to buyers in the licensing market.”

James Alvich

“Start making relationships with the different music houses, libraries, and sync pitching agencies out there. Let them represent your music, but you still retain ownership of all of your stuff. This way they can send your music to agencies, editors, and producers for consideration.”

Josh Kessler

“You can also link up with a pitching company with a proven track record of pitching songs to game companies.”

Go Where They Like To Be Found

Andrea von Foerster

“I go to a lot of music conferences and festivals…Every time I get invited to an event, I go because I want to meet people who pitch music on the label side, development side, agency side, management side, the artists themselves.”

Chris Mollere

“Hit me up, definitely. They can go through my website and just hit submissions. I check those all out.”

Be Organized & Give Them What They Want

Chris Mollere

“Make sure to put in a link that doesn’t expire. Sometimes it’ll take me a month to get back and download from a link I’ve been sent.”

Andrea von Foerster

“Never never never never never send an mp3 to somebody’s inbox without asking them first. We all get a lot of emails and that many people sending you mp3s will just clog up your inbox. I like things that don’t expire: ftp sites,, Dropbox, Yousendit.”

Chris Mollere

“One thing all artists should do is to include metadata in their MP3 files, so that when I press Apple-I to check it out, I can see your phone number or email address. Gracenote your CDs, it makes it a lot easier to track artists down, especially because the track names don’t always transfer.”

Andrea von Foerster

“I don’t need an entire press kit. I don’t need a bunch of pictures. What if I think you look kind of silly but I love your music? I really just want to know who has the publishing, who has the master, where are you from, and are there any samples.”

Build an Audience and a Strong Web Presence

Sarah Gavigan

“You need to create an audience and create buzz if you want major music supervisors to notice your music. You want to use Facebook and Twitter to help you to establish your brand.”

Liza Richardson

“The best way to get on my radar is to be a great band and to get somebody excited about you. I try to pay attention to what people are digging.”

Gary Calamar

“Sometimes I’ll hear of a band three different places in one week. I start to think, ‘Oh, I’m starting to hear more about this band. It sounds like they’d be worth checking out.’ I’ll go ahead and check it out.”

Thomas Golubic

“Hype Machine is great. Music blogs in general are great. In many ways, I find more music that way than I do through some of the resources I reach out to.”

Sarah Gavigan

“We usually head to social media channels once we know about an artist to see what the buzz factor is. If I have heard a song of an artist and I want to know more I will Google their name and visit their Facebook & Twitter profiles to see how large their audience is.”

Josh Kessler

“Build an audience and demand for your music commercially is the best way to get noticed.”


Top Tips To Get Your Music Placed In Movies, TV Shows, Video Games & Commercials


About Real*Industry*Talk

Professional Page: Experience: ASCAP Real Industry Talk Independent Music Company Get It Done Blog Artist Manager Education: Full Sail University, B.S., Music Business View all posts by Real*Industry*Talk

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