The Benefits of Sync Licensing in the Gaming Industry

In the ever-evolving landscape of the sync industry, one avenue that has gained significant traction in recent years is the licensing of songs into video games. This strategic move not only opens up new revenue streams but also offers a plethora of other benefits that can significantly bolster an artist's career.

As the gaming industry continues to grow and evolve, so too do the possibilities for artists to unlock new avenues for success through the power of interactive entertainment.

  • Exposure to a worldwide Audience: Video games, with their diverse player bases spanning various demographics and territories, provide unparalleled exposure for artists. Having a song synced into a popular game title can potentially reach millions of players worldwide, providing a huge new fan base.

  • Increased Visibility: Inclusion of a song in a video game can elevate profiles within the music and sync industry. Gamers develop emotional connections with the soundtracks of their favorite games, associating specific songs with memorable experiences. This emotional resonance can translate into increased visibility for artists, as players actively seek out and share the songs they discover while gaming.

  • Diversified Revenue Streams: For many artists, securing placements in video games can be a lucrative source of upfront income. In addition to upfront licensing fees, which can vary depending on the popularity of the artist and the prominence of the song placement, artists can monetize through streams, merchandise tie-ins or promotional partnerships. Depending on the deal, artists can also receive ongoing residuals although buy-outs are common in the world of gaming. One-stop or easy clear songs are a lot easier to clear for music supervisors working on video games and don't represent the complexities of major labels and publishers.

  • Cross-Promotion and Branding Opportunities: Many game developers actively promote their soundtracks through various channels, including social media, live events, and exclusive releases. By aligning a song with a popular game franchise, you can leverage its existing fan base to attract new audiences and engage with potential collaborators.

  • Long-Term Benefits: The impact of having a song licensed in a video game can extend far beyond the initial release. Unlike radio air-play or a television spot, which may have very limited shelf life, game soundtracks can have longevity. As players revisit their favorite games or discover them for the first time through re-releases, and updates music continues to resonate and remain relevant, generating ongoing exposure and revenue for years to come.

FIFA (now called EA SPORTS FC) demonstrates the transformative impact that video game placements can have on the success and visibility of songs. Here are a few examples of songs that have blown up off the back of sync placements in FIFA and other various video games.

Wavin' Flag" by K'naan - Featured in FIFA 10 (2010)

"Dreaming" by Smallpools- Featured in FIFA 14 (2013)

"Glory" by Bastille- Featured in FIFA 16 (2015)

"Still Alive" by Jonathan Coulton - Featured in Portal (2007)

"Power" by Kanye West - Featured in Saints Row: The Third (2011):

"Way Down We Go" by Kaleo - Featured in FIFA 16 (2015):

"Take Me Home, Country Roads" by John Denver - Featured in Fallout 76 (2018):

The benefits of licensing a song into video games extend far beyond mere financial gain. From expanded exposure and increased recognition to diversified revenue streams and creative opportunities, collaborating with game developers offers a myriad of advantages for artists looking to broaden their horizons and leave a lasting impact on audiences around the world.

Pinpoint all of the music supervisors working on the worlds' top video games at theSYNCreport