Navigating the New Music Industry: A Guide to the Digital Landscape and Opportunities for Musicians

Music has always been a huge driver in pop culture and the attitudes of a generation. Subsequently, the machine that drives music—the music industry—plays a big part in how we listen to and engage with music. The music industry has transformed over time w​ith the advancement of technology, further affecting the way we interact with music. From the way people create to the way people listen, the digital landscape for music is all-encompassing and impossible to avoid. Because of this, it’s important to know how to navigate these digital spaces when it comes to music management, production, and creation. Here are some digital opportunities to consider when launching your music career:

Digital Music Services

Every musician’s journey starts with the music. Whether you’re an instrumental artist, vocalist, or digital music maker, digital avenues of music creation and distribution can help you reach your intended audience. Though CDs still sell, their reach pales in comparison to streams on various platforms. Music distribution platforms are on your side when it comes to getting your music out there as quickly as possible.

These platforms allow you to drop music to multiple online stores and streaming sites from just one place. Rather than working overtime to upload your music to places like SoundCloud, Apple, and Spotify separately, allow music distribution platforms to do this work for you through digital systems and pathways. Investing in these platforms will enable you to focus more on the music and less on the technical.

Team Structure

Though music is the starting place, music management is what can help move your career forward. Without proper oversight and maintenance, your music career can become stagnant or could even fall off. In this digital age, music management has also adapted to the many avenues that going digital offers. Your team may consist of the following:


Money comes and goes, and someone needs to keep track of it. Accountants manage your money through digital finance systems that track your finances in real-time. Additionally, many of these digital finance systems allow you to personally check in on your progress and set milestones.


The music industry is a business, and the wrong move could cost you. Labels and management companies likely have lawyers on staff to guide them as they assist you. However, it may be worth it to bring your own lawyer(s) on to ensure your rights as a musician are protected. Software specific to documentation allows lawyers to keep digital copies of contracts and other paperwork, enabling them to be current and responsive.


From music production to time management, music artists benefit from having people on their team who are focused on managing both music and artistry. With music software, digital management platforms, and digital content drives, your management can stay ahead of the game and remain abreast of information.

Digital Branding

I​n this digital age, every artist can benefit from a strong online presence. Having your own digital platform in the form of a website allows fans and spectators to keep up with everything “you”: music, merchandise, concert dates, etc. Though websites are the most common digital platform for artists, having a social brand is certainly the most impactful. From independent musicians to artists that are heavily managed, having a distinct online brand can assist with catapulting a career into stardom. Social media is known to facilitate many artists’ overnight success (aka, “blowing up”) via viral content and social trends.

A​s the music artist, you get to decide what your social presence looks like. Some are very hands-on with their socials, while others rely on their teams for social media management. Some artists even choose to touch social media as little as possible. No matter what you choose, be sure it aligns with who you are as an artist, as well as who you want to be.

Network Expansion

The digital landscape not only allows for social interaction with fans but also creates opportunities to connect with peers in the industry. Many excellent collaborations have come to pass because of digital connections and interactions on social media. By following artists and producers you admire, you are more likely to form relationships with like-minded people in the music industry. And with connections like these, the possibilities are endless.


N​ow more than ever, it is possible to have a successful music career using the digital resources available to us today. With digital music services, social platforms, and extended connections through music, your music career can get a booming start the way you intended. You can still do things your way and be who you are as an artist while using digital resources—making it work for you is the key to your career’s success.

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