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How artists can make money (in Africa)

Make use of live streams to grow in popularity, market your services and products, and receive donations.

By real JemaPublished 3 months ago 6 min read

You are an artist, and you are thinking about the different ways you can monetize your art, especially if you are in Africa. Well, you are in the right place. In this article, I will share with you all the ways you can monetize your work and get paid for it. Let's get straight into it. 

Create Content

The first thing is for you to invest the time, effort, and resources to create your art

not just one song or an album, and then you are looking to make loads of revenue, but you should first put in the work to create enough content which you can sell. 

Imagine a store that has only one product, and that product is also limited in supply. Nobody will want to enter that store; rather, people will prefer a store that has a variety of products from which they can choose. So you can't expect to earn revenue when you haven't created enough content to market. 

As an artist, you should have a catalog of 100+ songs that you are marketing rather than making 3 or 5 songs that you think are very good. Music is very subjective; everybody has their own taste, so what you consider good might mean nothing to the person next door. 

Create a Streaming Website

You should invest in a streaming website, which is basically a website where you will put all your content for your fans to stream. You can have a variety of ways to generate revenue there.

  • Free content to attract visitors
  • Paid content 
  • Subscription content 
  • Ads 
  • Donation button 

This is going to be your personal space, where your fans can always come and get new content from you and have a very personal experience with you. They will avoid the abundance of different content from other artists and can focus solely on your content. 

Music Distribution

Put all or most of your music on music distribution platforms like Spotify, audiomack, boomplay etc You can easily do this using services such as Distrokid, CD Baby etc which allow you to distribute instantly everywhere with just the click of a button. These streaming platforms generate revenue based on the streaming of your music, so once you have your music on there, all you need to focus on is promoting your music and getting people to listen.

This is why it is important for you to have a huge catalog of music that people can stream. it's a very different thing to get 100 people to listen to 2 songs than to get 2 people to listen to 100 songs. 

Merch Sales

Depending on your popularity, your fans will be very willing to buy your merchandise because it helps them relate to you. You can invest in selling things like t-shirts, hats, and other items bearing your artist's name or logo. Managing a store can be very complicated when you have lots of products you have to sell, but as an artist with your merch you can produce them yourself and sell them for years. Your merch isn't going to change very frequently, so there isn't a lot of logistics to handle. Just print your products as often as you receive orders. 

Here are some things you can sell as an artist 

  • custom shirts 
  • branded shirts, hats, trousers, and jackets 
  • branded watches, jewelry, and key chains
  • branded bags, bottles, glasses, and pens 

You should also learn marketing skills and how to promote your products using different platforms. 

Social Media Live streams

These days, social media streams have become very popular. Even if you can't receive gifts due to country or payment system restrictions, you can always share with your fans the different ways they can donate to you, either by purchasing your merchandise or visiting your website. 

Make use of live streams to grow in popularity, market your services and products, and receive donations. 


One important way in which you can earn revenue as an artist while growing your brand simultaneously is by taking advantage of partnerships. Working with others for the mutual benefit of your brands. 

 Affiliate Marketing : This involves you selling another person's products and earning a commission, since you are in the music business you can sell things like phones, music players etc 

Brand Deal : Try to get a brand deal with another brand where you promote their products, you can see this with lots of artists who promote things like whiskey, beer etc 

Sponsorships: You can as well get a sponsorship for an event or a concert you organize in collaboration or individually. You might want to organize or take part in an event, you can do so by raising the funds through sponsorships

Promoting products or services to your fan base: you can aswell promote specific products and services which will draw attention towards another brand and they will do the same for you and you can benefit from their reputation. Imagine promoting and artist and they promoting you as well. This is kind of sneaky but by promoting a popular brand, it makes it seem like they have endorsed you.  

Brand Collaborations: Partnering with brands that align with your image and music can provide opportunities for endorsements, sponsorships, and product placements. These collaborations can generate substantial revenue while also expanding the your reach and brand recognition.


This involves licensing your music for use in movies, TV shows, advertisements, video games, and more. There isn't much to say here, you can make music specifically for a group of persons and sell the rights to that music to those persons. 


Whatever you learn how to do, best believe there are others as well who are in your shoes trying to learn the exact same thing, so you might as well offer them your knowledge. You know how to make music, why not teach that? You know how to market yourself, why not teach that? 

Sharing their expertise and passion for music can generate income for you, conducting workshops, or hosting masterclasses. This can be done in person, online, or through a combination of both methods.

Subscription Services

One way you should make use of is providing exclusive content, you don't need to make everything free, neither do you have to put all your music on streaming platforms. You should reserve some content for those fans who are really dedicated and willing to pay. 

Offer exclusive content on your website or social media for those premium fans who choose to pay for a subscription. This is going to help you build a loyal fan base and a recurring revenue stream. 

Live Performances

Live music is a cornerstone of the African music industry, and artists can earn significant income from performing at concerts, festivals, and other events. Building a strong local following and establishing relationships with promoters can help secure regular gigs. I tried to focus in this article on the digital ways by which you can earn revenue, but there are also many physical ways by which you can earn revenue. 

At your core you need to be a hustler and a grinder, most artist just do it for the fame, having many people screaming their names and liking them, but you have to understand that this is a business, and you have to get that business mindset. Your choices should be business oriented rather than ego oriented, make choices that help you grow and thrive. 

Depending on your level, here are some spots where you can perform as an artist, 

  • Birthday parties 
  • concerts
  • Marriages 
  • Shows 
  • Events 
  • etc 

Here are just a few ways in which you can generate revenue as an artist, this isn't going to be easy, and it really depends on where you are in the world and how much effort you put into it. I hope this helps you 

Thanks for reading ☺️

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About the Creator

real Jema

If you could say one thing and be heard by the entire world, what would that be?

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Comments (9)

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  • Veronica20 days ago

    Thank you for this article! Very well written and simple to understand. I am in the U.S. and these are perfect ways for me to add an extra source of income. Thanks for sharing. Have a peaceful 2024

  • Krishan Mubasharabout a month ago

    Well written and a great reminder, on how much work we artist have to do. Thank you!

  • Manikandan Blog Writerabout a month ago


  • Manikandan Blog Writerabout a month ago


  • Manikandan Blog Writerabout a month ago


  • Manikandan Blog Writerabout a month ago


  • Manikandan Blog Writerabout a month ago


  • Manikandan Blog Writerabout a month ago


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