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Creator Economy

Music on social media: do’s and don’ts for brand marketers

Jenny Crawford

Brands have embraced music on social media and created some of our favorite content. But even with big budgets and major partnerships on their side, brands can’t use any music they like in their social media posts. Even if music is available to users on a platform, marketers, employees, and paid influencers can’t typically use what’s provided or trending. Brand content is considered a commercial use and requires specific licenses. Yes, sadly this means some of the best trends and ideas aren’t safe for brands to post. We’d like to offer our condolences to social media managers and coordinators everywhere.

Music rights are confusing, and knowing what music is available for commercial use and what needs to be licensed can be tricky. Music libraries, trends, and partnerships can all mislead marketers into thinking a song is okay to use when it’s not:

  • Some platforms have commercial libraries for brands, but the music varies by platform. For example, a marketer can’t download an Instagram Reel and upload it on TikTok because the song may not be available in both commercial libraries. 
  • Trends can be dangerous if they contain non-commercial music or modified versions of songs that are not licensed (sped-up tracks, remixes, etc.) 
  • Even if working with a trusted partner like an agency, unlicensed music may be used without anyone’s knowledge. 

Without the right music or licenses, brands could have their content removed or face lawsuits from music rightsholders. 

The do’s and don’ts of using music on social media 

The good news is, once marketers understand the basics of copyright and music licensing, it’s easy to use music that doesn’t infringe on copyright. In our free copyright crash course for brand marketers, we go over the various types of music licenses, which ones are needed for brands and from whom, and how to use music without putting your brand at risk. 

Check out our do’s and don’ts below and download the eGuide for more best practices.

Do's and don'ts of using music on social media

Protect your posts with Pex

Pex can identify music in social content in real time, before anything goes live, and let you know who the rightsholders are so you can obtain licenses. We can also audit your published content – your own uploads, or your employee and influencer content. We make it easy to plug in to our solution and start identifying music.

Contact our team to learn more or see a demo. 

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