What Music Can You Use In Your Video Production?

November 1, 2016

Using Music in Your Video Production

What Music Can you Use in Your Video Production?

Choosing what music to use in a video production can be a tricky decision. It is a topic we deal with on a daily basis here at GingerVideo. It may be more a case of ‘What music CAN you use in your Video Production’ rather than WANT to use.

Talking music can be a minefield for many reasons – this blog post will keep you well informed when it comes to choosing music, so that you can enjoy it and rest assured you’re not breaking the law.

When it comes to adding a music track to a video, you have the option of using well-known tracks or royalty free tracks. With the complications of music licenses and copyright infringements, it’s important you get it right.

So, what music can I use?

The short answer to this? You can use any music track you like, as long as you have the budget for it!

Most artists would be delighted for you to use their music, if you pay them enough. Obviously, the more well known the artists’ tracks will be more expensive. A lot of people don’t have the budget for well-know tracks, but with the amount of quality tracks on the royalty free market there’s no reason to be disappointed.

Using well-know tracks

“Can we use that song by Beyoncé?” or “How about Coldplay’s new song?”

It might come as a surprise how often we hear these sorts of questions, and truthfully, the answer is yes you can use these songs! But realistically, you need to ensure you have permission to do so, as well as the budget to pay the artist!

To obtain the right permission, you would have to contact PRS in the UK who can help negotiate with most mainstream music publishers.

The artist or publisher can simply refuse the use of it; they might not want to be associated with your company, brand or message.

If permission is granted, then comes the consideration of how much they are expecting you to pay for it. The more well known the artist, the more expensive the track will be!

If mainstream music is the way you want to go with your video production, you should find out if you can use the track and whether you have the budget to use it, before you start planning your production – this way you would be disappointed halfway through the production!

Using a music licence

“Why can’t I just use any music I like?”

Any music track that features in your video production needs a licence. The company who produce the video and the client could both end up in serious trouble for copyright infringement if a licence is not obtained. For example, we would be in legal trouble for editing the music into the video and the client would be in trouble for distributing the video.

It is the video production company’s responsibility to ensure that the client knows the importance of a music licence and the dangers of not using one. Using a music track without a music licence could damage your business’ reputation.

Royalty free music

“What is royalty free music?”

Music in a video can completely transform the whole production, so it’s definitely not something you should give up on just because you can’t use that song that’s at the top of the charts!

Some people incorrectly think that royalty free music is free. Some is, but the majority isn’t!

Royalty free music is a relatively cheap option when it comes to using music tracks in your video. It can be a cost effective way of getting some good music, but like any music track you still have to make sure you have the right music licence for it.

There are 3 types of music licences for royalty free music. These include:

  1. Sync: the licence to add the music to a video production
  2. Mechanical: the licence to enable you to make copies of the copyright content
  3. Performance: the licence to play the production in public

It is important that any license covers the copyright areas you wish to exploit.

To recap

If you have the budget, and are set on using your favourite music track, make sure you obtain the relevant permission and licence. If you do not have the budget then royalty free music can be a great alternative; it is a lot cheaper and there are many tracks available to choose from.

The most important thing to consider when using any music is the licence. You don’t want to end up in legal trouble due to not obtaining the correct licence or not getting any licence at all.

How we help clients

Here at GingerVideo, we help our clients through the minefield of choosing music for their production. As well as helping to choose the music that stays within the legal boundaries, we also help to choose the right music for the production which is crucially as important.

We hope that you have found this post about what music you can use in a video production useful. Hopefully, it will have given you an insight into how to produce a video with the right music for you, as well as explaining the importance of a music licence.

You may also find our previous blog post interesting: 9 Video Marketing Mistakes to Avoid

If you want to find out more about the types of videos we produce, take a look in our video gallery.

If you have any questions, please feel free to leave any comments below.

Written by Neil Ginger

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