Let's Talk About Music Licenses (Part II)

Marmoset Music Licensing Part II .jpg

Every day we encounter music, whether it’s the subtle soundtrack playing on that ad you just paused to view on your Instagram feed or the film trailer you’ve played a dozen times. The point is, music is present and often supporting the content in powerful ways — even if it’s only subtle instrumental music.

So now that we’ve accustomed ourselves to music’s influential powers we can take a closer look at the next step — how to use that music on a project.

Just like any kind of intellectual property, that piece of music needs the right kind of permissions/license agreement in order to be used properly. In part one of our music licensing series (check it out here if new to the licensing world), we went over some popular music licenses and how to jump the common hurdles we see associated with such licenses.

Buckle up. Our continuation on Music Licensing includes the details to watch out for and consider before purchasing that license.


Organic Content

In our previous post, we looked at the Small Business License agreements and the common places where this license is put into action. Where a project will live on the web is extremely important in terms of licensing terms — we’ll dive a bit deeper into why in the next section.

  Music Licensing Coordinator, Nathaniel Schmidt

Music Licensing Coordinator, Nathaniel Schmidt

In the case of music appearing in advertisements, videos being used to generate a source of revenue (think of those 30 second ads you see appear on trending YouTube videos), this will not fall within the “organic content” category. So what does fall into the “organic content” category? We asked Marmoset’s Music Licensing Coordinator, Nathaniel Schmidt.

“Anything that is not organic web — which is something we define as anything posted to a website or social media page, YouTube or Vimeo, anything that is just going to kind of live there, it’s not going to be promoted, there are no ad dollars behind it, there is no paid downloads for it. That’s all organic web content.”

Don’t worry, if your version of content cannot be defined as “organic,” licensing music is still an option! Instead of purchasing a license for the song through Marmoset’s website, our Creative Music Licensing Team can assist with creating a custom quote/license for your needs.

Projects that most likely will require a custom license include:

  • broadcast radio

  • in-app media

  • anything that’s paid web

Think your project falls within this category? Get in touch with us here to begin the custom license conversation.

Can We Ask You a Question?

In the case of custom licensing, the project in question probably has a few specifications we’ll want to ensure are covered in the agreement. In true Marmoset fashion, we leave no stone unturned, in which case you can expect us to ask several specific questions regarding the project the custom music license will serve.

Looking to save some time? Providing us with specific information right off the bat will cut out down a custom licenses interactions. Here’s what we’ll want to know so you can stay ahead of the game.

  • Client: Who's this video for? About how many people do they employ?

  • Content: What's the video all about?

  • Lifespan: How long will this be live?

  • Project Title: Do you have a project title I can file this under?

  • Picture: Do you have picture /video to share?


As we continue exploring music licensing throughout our series, we’re always curious to know what’s on your mind. Are there licensing questions we can help better clarify or do you have feedback for the list of licenses on our FAQ page? Don’t be shy, let us know how we can help.

Posted on November 1, 2018 and filed under Marmoset, Music, Education.