What do you have to cost for CDs and Vinyl? How a lot will followers pay?

What do you have to cost for CDs and Vinyl? How a lot will followers pay?

With the recognition of streaming, bodily media is just not as important to followers because it was. So, how a lot are they prepared to pay for CDs and vinyl, and what does it take to show a revenue?

by Tony van Veen of Disc Makers Blog

I wish to discuss what worth you possibly can promote a CD or vinyl report for lately and whether or not you possibly can truly earn a living promoting bodily media. Artists ask me about this loads, notably about vinyl, because the funding in manufacturing a vinyl report is extra substantial.

Manufacturing prices

In the portions mostly ordered by unbiased artists, manufacturing CDs prices between $1 to perhaps $2.50 apiece. Vinyl, as a result of it’s a a lot slower, much less environment friendly course of to fabricate, prices extra. An entry-level vinyl order of 100 records can value $10 to $15 per unit, and the worth goes down fairly shortly as your order dimension goes up, to the place you’re spending $7 and even $5 per report at portions of 300 or 500.

Of course, many artists and labels need extras with vinyl, together with particular vinyl colours and results, gate-fold jackets, and extra, which can drive the unit worth up.

But, what about promoting costs? How a lot will a fan in the present day pay for a CD or vinyl report? Turns on the market’s a reasonably big selection of costs that bodily media is offered for.

CD sale costs

There are two major areas the place CDs and vinyl are offered: at live shows and thru retail, and retail will be in brick-and-mortar indie report shops or on-line on an artist’s Bandcamp web page or web site, or on Amazon.

What costs are we seeing there? Well, at live shows, the commonest worth that small unbiased artists promote their CDs for appears to be $10. It’s a worth that’s straightforward on the pockets and makes a CD a terrific worth, whereas nonetheless producing a whopping 80 p.c revenue margin for the artist.

More established artists will promote CDs at live shows for $15, and I’ve seen some main artists taking part in massive venues promoting CDs for $20, even $25. It all is determined by the artist and the label — and the product. A limited-edition run can promote for a better worth. If you, the artist, sit on the merch sales space and autograph the CDs, you may get a better worth, and typically it’s only a matter of being brave sufficient to place a $15 price ticket in your CDs as a substitute of $10 and see if individuals purchase it.

My opinion for many artists is, you don’t have to promote a CD for $10 — a $12–$15 worth level is one thing followers will fortunately pay.

What about in shops? There we see CD costs typically clustered across the $15 worth level, starting from $12–18, and sometimes at $20. So, what about vinyl?

Vinyl sale costs

Over the previous couple of years, we’ve got seen main inflation in vinyl report pricing at retail. Prices in shops have smashed via the $30 barrier and typically even the $40 barrier. This might have had a little bit of an impact of dampening vinyl demand — it simply received too costly for some followers, regardless that vinyl gross sales volumes typically continued to rise in 2023.

At live shows, I’m seeing indie bands beginning at $20 a report, which is a tremendous deal, and permits an artist to nonetheless make 40, 50, typically 60 p.c margins, relying on what they paid for his or her report. $20 to $25 is a standard entry-level worth vary, although I often see vinyl offered for $30 and even $35 at live shows.

These ranges will not be too completely different from what is going on at retail; vinyl report costs begin round $27 per report and up, these days going nicely into the mid to higher $30s, and sometimes, as I discussed, I see vinyl priced at $40 or extra.

Factors that have an effect on vinyl costs

There are many elements that go into setting the worth. Is it a restricted run? Who is the artist? What is the demand for the album? Is there one thing particular about it — like coloured vinyl? And one factor that drives up vinyl costs is that this: most albums which are launched in the present day don’t match on one report.

To press a good-sounding report, you possibly can solely match about 45 — perhaps 48 — minutes of music on it. Many albums in the present day are longer than that, so when these albums get pressed on vinyl, it means urgent two records, which principally doubles the manufacturing value. That greater value will result in a better promoting worth of $35, $40, or typically much more.

Let’s break down the numbers

So, can an artist earn a living promoting bodily media? Absolutely! I believe the numbers I simply talked about show it. If you make a 100 CDs for $200 and also you promote them for $10 apiece, you solely have to promote 20 CDs to get your $200 manufacturing value again. Every CD you promote after that’s one hundred pc revenue! If you promote your CDs for $15 apiece, you solely have to promote 14 to cowl your manufacturing value. Pretty nice, proper?

If you promote these 100 CDs, you’d have made $1,500 in gross sales, and at $200 to fabricate, that’s a $1,300 revenue.

What about vinyl? Well, for those who make 100 records for $1,300 and also you promote them for $25 apiece, you should promote 52 records — about half — to cowl your manufacturing value. If you promote them for the discount worth of $20, you’ have to promote 65 records. The factor is, followers love vinyl and can pay $25 for a report. That’s a superb deal, in the present day.

Now, will you promote 52 records at your your subsequent live performance? Maybe not, however over the subsequent few months, between live performance gross sales and gross sales off your web site and Bandcamp web page, that ought to be doable when you’ve got any type of fan base in any respect. So, in abstract, what did you simply hear?

Let’s assessment the numbers

The commonest worth vary for promoting CDs is $10–$15, with greater costs doable relying on who you might be and what you provide to make these discs premium, and the margins are an enormous 80 p.c or extra, making CDs simply worthwhile for artists.

Vinyl records, as a result of they’re costlier to fabricate, promote for between $20–$35 with $25–$30 being the candy spot. Profit margins there are 40–60 p.c, and since followers go loopy over vinyl at reveals and in shops, it shouldn’t be too laborious to maneuver these models for those who’re an energetic artist.

Now, earlier than you allow a remark telling me that my value calculations didn’t embrace the price of recording: sure, you’re one hundred pc proper. I’m assuming you’re recording that album regardless, to place it up on streaming platforms — the place the music listeners are.

If you’re a working artist, you should put music out for the followers, and everyone knows that streaming royalties are so tiny, they don’t assist you to pay any payments, which is why, even in 2024, these traditional bodily codecs of vinyl and CD stay among the finest methods for an artist artist to monetize their music.

And, after all, for those who’re seeking to launch your album on CD or vinyl, your mates at Disc Makers, are pleased to assist!

Tony van Veen is the CEO of DIY Media Group, the mum or dad firm of Disc Makers and BookBaby. As a university pupil, he performed in indie bands, created his personal LPs, cassettes, and t-shirts, and offered them at reveals. Today, he collects CDs, vinyl LPs, and live performance t-shirts to assist the artists he loves.

Alana Bonilla on 02/13/2024 in D.I.Y. | Permalink |

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February 13, 2024 at 03:58PM

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