Stock Music

The Rise of Stock Music


What is Stock Music?
Stock Music, also known as production music, is commercial music that can be licensed for use in films, videos, commercials, and other media. It is called “stock” because it is available “off the shelf” through Stock Music libraries for anyone to purchase a license and use, without needing the composer’s direct permission. Stock Music allows media producers to easily obtain legal rights to use pre-recorded songs in their projects without having to commission original compositions.

Growth of the Stock Music industry
The Stock Music industry has grown tremendously over the past few decades driven by increased demand from the media and entertainment sectors. With the rise of video content on platforms like YouTube, Instagram, and TikTok, Stock Music serves as a cost-effective solution for content creators needing music for their videos without breaking budgets. The industry is projected to be worth over $3 billion by 2024 as more creators turn to stock libraries for music licensing.

Licensing model powers growth
Stock Music thrives on a convenient licensing model. Music libraries categorize their music tracks by duration, mood, genre, and instruments used. Customers can browse library catalogs online, choose suitable music based on their project needs, and obtain instant licenses. Common licensing models include synchronization (sync) licenses for incorporating music into video/media, and public performance licenses. This easy licensing process has made Stock Music appealing compared to hiring composers.

Expansion of music libraries
As demand grew, many new Stock Music libraries emerged over the past decade alongside established players like Audio Network and Musicbed. Major labels like Universal Music also launched their own production music divisions. Independent artists also started self-releasing music to stock libraries for additional revenue streams. Today thousands of independent libraries have catalogs rivaling the biggest players. This competition has led to constant expansion of catalogs sizes and innovative new licensing tools.

Boom in independent artist signings
The proliferation of music libraries created opportunities for independent music artists. Libraries actively sign new composers and bands to expand catalogs. With costs of living increasingly high, stock libraries provide many artists a reliable secondary income stream. Some artists even make full-time careers out of Stock Music composition and sign multi-album deals with top libraries. Today hundreds of thousands of artists globally sell music licenses through stock libraries.

Mobile licensing goes mainstream
Recent years saw Stock Music libraries roll out advanced mobile licensing applications. Services like Musicbed and ShutterStock Music launched iOS/Android apps that let video creators find and license music on the go from their phones/tablets. This was a breakthrough as most videos today are shot and edited using mobile devices. Mobile apps made the Stock Music licensing process even more seamless and spurred further growth.

Embracing AI and curation trends
Top libraries are now harnessing artificial intelligence to customize music discovery and expand catalogs. Services apply AI techniques to analyze existing tracks and generate new mixes and derivative works. As music consumption moves towards curated playlists, libraries launched new tools like Soundstripe Studio that let creators build custom album-style playlists for their projects from vast music selections. These innovative trends have enhanced the appeal of Stock Music.

Sustaining momentum in the coming decade
Industry experts project Stock Music’s momentum will sustain over the next 10 years driven by continuous proliferation of online video. Platforms are investing in new video/AR/VR formats demanding more immersive audio experiences. Stock Music with its agile licensing is well-poised to fulfill these dynamic needs. Libraries will continue expanding catalogs using AI and high quality independent artist signings. The future also involves innovative in-platform music solutions tailored for social apps and live streaming. Stock Music is set for an exciting phase of innovation and growth ahead.

1. Source: Coherent Market Insights, Public sources, Desk research
2. We have leveraged AI tools to mine information and compile it