Whether you hire a composer, use pre-made stock music, or make it yourself, a good soundtrack can make your game earn more.
Let's start with the obvious: good music makes games more enjoyable. This means better reviews, better critics, more streamings - and they all lead to more sales.
Do you know what generates the most wishlists? A great trailer. And you know what makes 50% of a great trailer? Great music. (watch any good trailer without music and then with it)
A good soundtrack can help you turn players who liked the game into long-term fans. When players listen to the soundtrack after playing the game, they keep reliving the experience of playing your game, making it a more significant part of their lives. Not only you'll have a greater impact on their lives, but they'll be much more willing to purchase your new titles, DLCs, and merchandising.
Good soundtracks sell. There's a lot of potential income from selling the music on Steam and Bandcamp, sometimes even from the royalties from streaming platforms like Spotify or Apple Music.
A soundtrack can also be easily turned into merchandising: physical CDs, vinyls, cassettes (yes) and even music sheets can easily become an additional income source for you.
Your most enthusiastic players want opportunities like this to show their support. The soundtrack I made for FixFox is on sale on Bandcamp as a pay-what-you-want digital download; I've seen players paying up to $50 (x4 times the game price!) simply because they wanted to show how much they loved it.
A good soundtrack has the potential to generate a ton of social media content to promote your game before and after release. People love to see the behind-the-scenes of music creation!
A composer with a good marketing mindset can do video breakdowns of tracks for Instagram, YouTube, and TikTok, write blog posts and Twitter threads explaining the creative process, record live versions playing the music, share footage of the recording process, and so on.
In some cases, these pieces of content can even be featured on prominent game news sites, resulting in a good deal of attention for your game (like this post I wrote that ended up on Gamasutra).
All this can supercharge your social media strategy and take a weight off your shoulders, especially if you're a solo dev or part of a small team. More content means more exposure and, ultimately, more sales. It's a gold mine.
Unfortunately, very few devs and composers seize this.
We've discussed five ways a good soundtrack can make you earn more:
But as you might expect, you need a great soundtrack for this to happen.
Read my other blog posts to learn how to get a great soundtrack for your game - whether you hire a composer, use pre-made stock music, or make it yourself.
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