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Frequently Asked Questions

Your IMG Questions Answered

Here are answers to the questions our clients most often ask us!

What is Music Publishing?


The business of acquiring, protecting, and promoting song (composition) copyrights and collecting the royalties that these copyrights generate. Music publishing ensures that songwriters get paid fairly when their intellectual property—their musical works—are used by companies such as record labels (which pay mechanical royalties); radio stations, bars, and restaurants (which pay performance royalties); or film studios and advertising agencies (which pay sync license fees), among others. Music publishing pays royalties only to the songwriter or producer of a song, not to performing artists or recording owners.

What is a Co-Publishing Agreement?


A publishing agreement in which a songwriter assigns a certain percentage of their copyright to a publishing company in exchange for creative and administrative services. 

What is a Administration Agreement (Deal)?


A partnership deal in which a songwriter contracts with a publisher or administrator. In this arrangement, the songwriter keeps 100 percent ownership of the copyright and pays an administrative fee to the publisher/administrator. The publisher usually provides limited or no creative services. 

What is a Performing Rights Organizations (PRO)?


PROs are responsible for collecting income on behalf of songwriters and music publishers when a song is publicly broadcast or performed. Public performances can include play on television or radio, in clubs and restaurants, on websites, or on other broadcasting systems. PROs collect license fees for this usage which they pay to their registered songwriters after taking a small fee.

Will I still be independent if I partner with IMG?

Yes, IMG acts primarily as an administrative publishing company, not owning any copyrights.

What’s the difference between Manager and Publisher?

Manager: A manager guides every aspect of their clients' careers, counseling them on professional decisions and opportunities, overseeing their day-to-day schedules and activities, and representing their interests within larger productions and teams.

Publisher: A music publisher is an organization or person that secures and manages copyrights for musical compositions on behalf of songwriters and producers. Their tasks include promoting their catalog's songs to recording artists; licensing compositions for use by films, television, advertisements, and other media; monitoring song usage; and collecting and distributing royalties to clients.

What is Sound Exchange?


Sound Exchange collects sound recording royalties and recorded digital performance royalties for sound recording copyright owners and featured recording artists when their music is played on non-interactive broadcasters. Sound recording copyright owners are typically record labels, but this can be a independent artist or producer who financed the recording. Featured artists are the main artist or band on a record. Other performers, like session musicians or backing vocalists, also receive royalties. A non-interactive broadcaster operates via satellite or internet and provides a pre-programmed listening experience. Non-Interactive means you can’t choose the music you want to listen to or create a playlist. Pandora or SiriusXM are classed as non-interactive broadcasters because you can’t curate the listening experience. Spotify or Apple Music, for example, are interactive.

Can you help me with Sound Exchange letter of direction (LOD)?


Yes we will, we will help secure letter of direction forms and submit them to Sound Exchange on your behalf. 

Do you help me collect royalties worldwide?


Yes, we collect royalties worldwide in 240 territories to ensure clients are paid every dime they’re owed. 

Will I have access to royalty statements?


Yes, every quarter when royalties are distributed you will have access to royalty statements when you login into your royalty portal.

Will you register my songs?


Yes, we will register your entire catalog which includes every song you’ve written or produced. 

Do you provide a lawyer to review contracts? (Optional)


Yes, we provide an excellent in-house entertainment lawyer to review all contracts to ensure you're getting the best deal possible.

How long will it take to receive my first royalty check?


IMG collects royalties from numerous pay sources for many difference usage types, with each source following its own timeline. It will generally take an average of 9-12 months before you see your first royalty payment. This timeline is based on full global registration taking up to six months, and payments coming in on varying pay cycles. Once song registration is complete, we can start to receive and process payments from various societies throughout the world. Once we receive royalties for your registered musical works, you will receive these earnings at the end of the quarter.

How often will I be paid?


Royalty distribution dates are June 30th, September 30th, December 30th, March 30th. ​

Do you collect from YouTube?


IMG offers YouTube monetization on behalf of your compositions (lyrics or instrumentals) as part of our worldwide publishing administration services. 

Do you host songwriter and producer camps?


Yes we do. We host camps and creative workshops four times a year. 

Do you clear samples?


No, we do not assist with sample clearance at this time but we suggest you to contact sample clearance service DMG clearances. 

Can you help me with Producer Agreements?


If your song has been released through a major record label and you were never given a producer agreement, producer fee, Sound Exchange LOD, etc. we can attempt to contact the artist / label and obtain a producer agreement for you. We will fight for you and help you get paid.

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