Good outro music is the reward a viewer gets for watching to the end. When you’re making videos, or any kind of content, you have to face the fact that many if not most of your viewers won’t watch all the way through. So you want to treat those who do with reverence — they’re your most dedicated audience. Giving them an outro that leaves them feeling satisfied is the least you can do, and worth some extra effort.
Where to find outro music for your YouTube videos
What is outro music?
YouTube outro music is the musical cue that plays at the end of a YouTube video. You can position outro music to function as background music that plays underneath the closing part of your narrative. You can also program outro music tracks to play when your video content has ended, while the screen shows the viewer other videos from your YouTube channel.
Why do I need outro music?
Outro music serves three main functions in a YouTube video.
- It creates a final impression. Again, that viewer who stays with your video all the way to the end is your best viewer. You want to ensure they’ll come back for more by leaving them with a strong final impression. Outro music is a key part of leaving the viewer feeling satisfied. It locks in the feeling you’ve been trying to convey in your video — if you want to leave them feeling energized, or angry, or pleasantly confused, you’ll want to choose outro music that locks in that emotion.
- It helps give content a consistent feel. Many YouTube creators end all of their videos with the same outro music. This establishes an aural signature for their entire catalog. You can create a unified aesthetic among your videos by selecting a single outro music cue that plays at the end of all your videos.
- It can support a call to action. If you’re ending your YouTube video with a call to action, consider boosting it with some mood-appropriate outro music. This adds a degree of emotional stakes that wouldn’t be possible if it was just a person talking with no background music.
Where can I find outro music for my video?
You don’t have to be an accomplished composer to get great outro music for your YouTube videos. You don’t even need to know an accomplished composer. You just need — you guessed it — the internet. Online, you’ll find tons of great resources for both paid and free outro music.
Try to choose YouTube outro music that’s royalty-free. This means you pay a one-time fee to use the music, rather than having to pay the composer or publisher every time that music gets played. (That would bankrupt most YouTube creators.) You can find such tracks in a royalty-free music library, most of which work on a subscription model. Here are six great resources to explore. They’ll connect you to some great musical cues that adhere to applicable copyright laws, so you don’t even need to think about that.
- PremiumBeat. PremiumBeat offers a royalty-free music library that’s expertly curated and easy to use. The service, which is owned by Shutterstock, offers over 20,000 tracks categorized by mood, context, length, and more. You’ll access your tracks via a subscription model. A $65 monthly fee gives you five downloads to use in your YouTube videos — that’s five tracks for every month you subscribe. The platform is easy to search too, because the tracks are organized using tags that cover moods, musical genres, instrumentation, beats per minute (BPM), and more.
- Epidemic Sound. For a lower-priced monthly subscription, check out Epidemic Sound. Subscribers get access to a multi-platform licensing deal that includes YouTube, Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, and Twitch. It also covers podcasting licenses. If you pay for a year upfront, personal subscriptions come out to $9 per month and commercial subscriptions $19 per month. (Month-to-month rates are slightly higher.)
- FreePD. If your budget for outro music is literally zero dollars, look into Creative Commons music. (Creative Commons music is managed by a nonprofit organization. It may be copyrighted music, but it is free to use. Just watch out for tracks labeled CC-NC, which stands for “Creative Commons, non-commercial.” As long as your Creative Commons license doesn’t include the “NC” designation, you’re safe to use it.) FreePD.com offers a great resource for Creative Commons music. Most of the site’s listed tracks are completely free to use and require no attribution. These tracks come with a Creative Commons 0 license (CC0), which means the composer and publisher have relinquished any copyright. You’ll find more limited choices on FreePD than you would on other platforms, but it’s hard to beat the price.
- FreeStockMusic. Looking for another free outro music resource? Try FreeStockMusic.com. It contains a mix of free tracks and paid tracks (that are royalty-free). For completely free music with a CC0 designation, expect a lot of electronic ambient music and a good deal of sound effects. But if you’re willing to pay a little bit of money for a royalty-free license (even $5) the site has a lot more to offer.
- Envato Elements. Are you more than just a YouTuber? If you also blog, podcast, build websites, or direct full-length movies, consider a subscription service that offers royalty-free visual resources along with audio ones. Envato Elements charges a single rate for multimedia content — the $16.50/month plan comes with access to music (including outro music), sound effects, photos, video templates, graphic templates, fonts, and more.
- YouTube itself. There’s perhaps no better resource for royalty-free YouTube music than YouTube. The platform offers over 1,000 videos with Creative Commons music that’s been cleared for commercial use. And unlike some other free sound clips, these musical cues are long. Because it’s YouTube, the tracks are in video format, so you’ll need to download them to your computer in order to edit them into your own video. If you subscribe to the channel, YouTube guides you through the process.
3 ways to edit your outro music
Hopefully, you’ll use one of the internet’s many resources to find and download the perfect audio track for your outro music. Now you need to edit that audio track to fit your purposes. Keep these three ideas in mind as you edit.
- Balance your volume. If your outro music plays underneath a person speaking, balance volume levels to make sure the music doesn’t overwhelm the person’s voice. Think of the speaker as the main event and your outro theme as background music.
- Sync the music to your visuals. Trim the length of your musical cue to match the length of your video outro. Make sure the music syncs with key visual moments, like cuts or fade-outs.
- Consider adding sound effects. Many directors and sound designers supplement their musical underscore with sound effects that build an overall aural tapestry. If your music sounds thin or underwhelming, consider adding an ambient sound effect like a low rumble to fill up more frequencies and give your audio track some heft.
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