Adscend Media Blog | Rewards News for Apps & Websites

Ask Dr. Lock: Should I Content Lock My Music?

content locking

The Doctor is always available to help your site make more money using Adscend Media’s content gateway technology. To ask Dr. Lock a question about content locking, please email your question to

Today’s Question: December 6th, 2012

“My band just released our new album and no one is buying it. We want people to hear it, but don’t want to give away our songs for free. Could content locking help us make some more money?”

Nate C, Santa Rosa, CA

Dr. Lock: Nate, thanks for your email. Your dilemma is one that almost all of today’s music groups are facing. If you charge for your songs, you won’t get the exposure that giving away your material for free would provide you. On the other hand, if you give away your tunes for free, you may receive a bunch of compliments and some new fans, but no financial compensation. The bottom line is that to be successful long term, your band needs to make money for equipment, promotion, and longevity. If everyone digs your songs, but no one is paying for any of them, you may be stuck eating off the McDonald’s value menu for a while. However, don’t “fret!” There is a middle ground between having people pay for your tunes and giving them away for free. This sacred middle ground is known as content locking.

Content locking works through a tool called a content gateway. When someone clicks on a link to buy your music, a window appears in their browser (sort of like a pop-up ad) called an overlay. The overlay has a message that states that the person wanting to download your music can’t do so until he or she completes an action (Here is an example of a gateway btw: This action usually just consists of filling out a short offer form from an advertiser and most of these offers don’t require a purchase or any financial commitment whatsoever. After the user completes the action, he or she can then get access to your music through receiving a file to download or you can have you music immediately start to play.

Content locking works for musicians because it fulfills their two most pressing marketing needs:


Your friends, family and fans all have items that compete for their dollars each day. If your potential fans have to choose between buying dinner, going to the movies or even getting gas, chances are those options will be chosen over buying your album. Locking your music virtually knocks down this price barrier, which opens up your potential fan base. You want people to hear your music, as you didn’t spend hours rehearsing, writing songs and driving around in your uncle’s minivan for nothing. By providing a low, or no cost alternative for distributing your music, content locking can achieve your goal of getting your music heard.

 Revenue Generation

It’s definitely a gratifying experience to have more people hear your music. However, wouldn’t a little cash be nice for your services? Locking your music can generate more revenue from your music as you will get commission each time someone completes an offer to unlock your music. So, as your new fan base discovers your music, you can make a little profit off of their discovery.

How can you get started?

The affiliate managers of Adscend Media are happy to help set up your content gateway, provide you with suggestions on how you can best maximize your sales and answer any questions that you might have about the process. They understand that most musicians have never heard of content locking and can help walk you through all of the necessary steps to get your music locked.

But wait, there’s more…

Adscend’s content gateway technology allows you to customize the look of your content overlay and choose what offers will work best to show on your overlay. Not sure of which offers will convert with the fans of your band’s music? Adscend affiliate managers can make recommendations or you can just let the technology do its job. Adscend’s content gateway automatically places the highest converting offers for whichever country your fans are located in instantly on to your overlay!

So, what are you waiting for? The path to more fans and some additional income runs through Adscend. Sign up today at

Well, there you have it. That is your prescription for the day.

Good “Lock”

-Dr. Lock

Dr. Connie Tent Lock is the “World’s #1 Content Locking Expert” according to himself. When not content locking everything, you can find Dr. Lock roaming the halls of the Adscend Media offices.

Tony Cohn

Tony Cohn is a marketing manager with Adscend Media, a leading rewards-based advertising ad platform for mobile apps and games. When not at work, Tony enjoys watching New York Mets baseball, smoking cigars, and running. Originally from the Bay Area, Tony currently resides in Sacramento, CA.

1 comment

  • It’s also worth noting that if you sell your songs on iTunes, for 99 cents each, when purchased you’re only going to get about 25 cents each time, because of the high fees that Apple charges