Tadcast Reverses Music Licensing Process for Online Producers

tadcast screenshot

Two-year-old product placement startup Tadcast, which has connected brands like Colgate with top YouTubers like Ryan Higa and Mystery Guitar Man, wants to work with a new type of brand: musicians. A new section of Tadcast will soon be available for musicians hoping to see their songs used by video producers.

There are plenty of music-licensing sites for low-budget producers out there, but here’s Tadcast’s twist: Musicians working with Tadcast will pay YouTubers for using their music, either per click-through or per view. This is a pretty big reversal on traditional music licensing practices, in which producers pay artists for the rights to use their songs, but Tadcast’s belief is that a band hoping to get its songs out there will value the promotional opportunity.

How Tadcast Helps Video Producers! from Tadcast on Vimeo.

While the musician program is currently in alpha, Greg Benson (MediocreFilms on YouTube) has already created a few test videos under the program, including last September’s Chat Roulette Rock Band, which currently has 51,715 views. The video’s description includes a prominent link to the band’s iTunes page.


There are currently 91 paying songs available right now, and when that number increases to around 200, Tadcast will encourage alpha users to begin using it, including many of the top YouTubers that Tadcast has worked with in the past. According to Tadcast VP Jeremy Parker, the program will soon be open to any producer looking for free music to use for a video, no matter what kind of view counts he or she gets.

According to the FAQ for musicians, the benefits of using Tadcast are:

If you believe in your music, you want people to hear it. If people hear it, they’ll probably become your fan, right? Bands need to do more than play shows and hope people will discover them. Tadcast allows your music to be heard by potentially millions of people who otherwise would have never had the pleasure of hearing your music. A potential fan will hear your song in a video, see a pop up that tells them who they’re listening to, and will allow them to click on a link to learn more or purchase your song. What more can you ask for from advertising?

Musicians are able to put restrictions on the kind of videos that use their music, such as asking for their tunes not to be used on videos with strong language or extreme political content. While the more a video is seen, the more musicians may pay producers, there are safeguards in place to make sure the bank isn’t broken; specifically, musicians have the ability to cap the payments they’re willing to make on a video from $0 to $250. The FAQ for musicians strongly discourages them from setting the amount at $0, though, stating that:

We want anybody to sign up even if they don’t have the money for this kind of advertising. However, we should warn you that producers will probably shy away from your music and not choose it since other musicians are willing to compensate them. But if you’re a famous artist or you want to take the chance, I guess you could go ahead and choose to pay $0.00 per view.

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