Similar careers

How to become a Music Promotions Manager

music  promotions manager careers

What does a Music Promotions Manager do?

Promotions managers in the music industry are responsible for promoting clients and their music. They may be involved in representing individual artists, promoting records for a record company or publicising a venue.

Music promoters who work for a record company or represent artists are involved in arranging interviews with the music press and television and radio stations. They arrange promotion events and persuade clubs, DJs, television and radio stations to give airtime to newly released records (known as ‘plugging’). Managers also advise clients when to release records and organise tours. In larger record companies they may specialise in marketing and plugging, or in ‘A and R’ where they select and represent the artists.

Live music promotions managers book suitable acts and artists for particular venues. Their work involves identifying suitable audiences and organising marketing material that will appeal to them. They make sure that the necessary arrangements are made and the correct equipment is supplied to ensure that events run smoothly.

In both cases their work will include negotiating contracts; writing and arranging the printing of promotional material; advising on legal issues; keeping administrative records; liaising with designers and other marketing personnel; budgeting and financial record keeping.

What's the working environment like working as a Music Promotions Manager?

Promotions managers in the music industry work irregular hours. They may be expected to attend evening events and work at weekends.

They are likely to be based in an office but may also attend clubs and concerts. Travelling to visit clients, liaise with printers and to undertake promotions work is essential and a driving licence is likely to be required.

What does it take to become a Music Promotions Manager?

To work as a promotions manager in the music industry you will need:

  • an interest in music (which could include detailed knowledge of a particular type)
  • initiative and enterprise to promote your clients
  • the ability to work under pressure
  • the ability to work effectively on your own and as part of a team
  • financial awareness
  • good communication skills
  • a persuasive and persistent approach
  • good organisational skills
  • self motivation and the ability to motivate others
  • computer literacy.

Music Promotions Manager Career Opportunities

Opportunities for promotions managers working in the record industry exist in major cities, such as London and Manchester. There is usually strong competition for vacancies. Overall the number of managers is declining as web sites and other media are used more extensively to advertise artists and venues.

Opportunities for managing venues are likely to be more regionally based as many towns and cities have arts centres, halls and other facilities.

In large companies it may be possible to specialise in a certain type of music or venue or in certain aspects of the work like contract negotiation.

There are opportunities to become self-employed or start up an agency or promotions company. Some move into general management and public relations. Opportunities exist to work abroad.

Further information

If you would like to know anything about Music Promotions Manager that does not appear on Hotcourses, further information can be found below.

British Phonographic Institute (BPI)
Riverside Building
County Hall
Westminster Bridge Road
Tel: 020 7803 1300

Music Managers Forum (MMF)
1 York St
Tel: 0870 8507 800

MMF Training
2nd Floor
Fourways House East
57 Hilton St
M1 2EJ
Tel: 0161 228 3993

Creative and Cultural Skills
Tel: 0800 093 0444

Production Services Association
PO Box 2709
Tel:01225 332668

Musicians Union
60-62 Clapham Road
Tel: 020 7582 5566

Facts and Stats:

  • The merchandising from Star Wars: Episode One - The Phantom Menace, is expected to generate twice as much as the box office takings.
  • Star Wars is the most successful film-based merchandising programme in history with a £2.8 billion turnover.
  • By 2004, it has been predicted that over £13 billion a year will be spent on on-line advertising in the US alone, compared with £3.4 billion in Europe.
  • Between a fifth and a quarter of holiday bookings originate from Teletext.