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How do I Become a Music Publicist?

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  • Written By: A.E. Freeman
  • Edited By: Jenn Walker
  • Last Modified Date: 09 November 2016
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A music publicist contacts members of the press in order to get media coverage and reviews for bands and musicians he promotes. To become a music publicist, you need the right combination of training, personality and an interest in music. Aspiring publicists may have the best chances for employment by first earning a bachelor's degree in a related field. Internships or short-term employment opportunities in a music industry business may provide helpful experience as well.

The first step on the path to become a music publicist is getting the right training. Music publicists generally have degrees in public relations, communications or business. You should first earn a bachelors degree and can later earn a master's degree in order to advance in your field if necessary. While you are in school, take advantage of internships to meet other publicists. Attending concerts by local bands and socializing with students in the music department at your school is a good way to network, which can be helpful in finding future clients.

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Shy violets may not be best suited for a music publicist position. A primary part of a publicist's job is contacting music journalists and reporters. Sometimes, you may need to reach out to a person you do not know in order to request coverage for a band you are promoting. As a publicist, you typically need to be organized as well. Following up with reporters who respond to your queries is necessary if you want to get a write up for your clients.

The next step to become a music publicist is building your client base. One of the best ways to start is to introduce yourself to a local or up and coming band whose music you enjoy and ask them if they have a publicist. Leave your card with the band if you meet in person. If you e-mail the band, be sure to include all your contact information at the end of the e-mail. Once you have built a solid base of clients, ask them to refer to you any other bands who may need a publicist.

It also may be helpful to build your list of contacts in the media and at publicity firms. After finishing your education, you can choose to apply for an entry level position at a public relations firm or attempt to freelance as a music publicist. Even if you decide to freelance, you will want to know who other publicists are so you can ask them for tips on contacting unfamiliar journalists or magazines. Always be polite when contacting music reviewers. Introduce yourself and the band you are promoting. Do not assume too casual a tone, even in an e-mail. When writing to a new publication, always make sure that you address a specific person and not the music department in general.

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