Music PR: Rocking the Profession by Rolling with the Punches: Guest Post by Suzanne Berry

Public relations professionals are trained to expect the unexpected. When it comes to any sector of the PR industry, issues will always arise out of nowhere, and you as the professional are expected to come up with a solution. In the music industry, there are challenges pertaining specifically to this business. There may be the glitz and the glamour, but what about everything behind-the-scenes? Here are some of the issues you may face while working in the music.

1. Music is subjective. What happens if your client is not attracting the masses like it used to? An artist’s fan base tends to “grow up” with them, meaning their style may become more mature towards their age group. But what if their new music is not well received? Like in fashion, there are trends in music, and the most popular genres and musicians may be the least in just a few years. PR is not the root of the problem when it comes to music subjectivity. It is all about what the client wants to produce versus what their fan base wants to hear. PR professionals need to be aware of the situation and sometimes accept the fact that an artist’s career may dwindle down due changing trends.

2. Artists can make a call whenever they please. If something is not going their way, an artist can just call it quits and back out of music projects, tours, event appearances, etc. For example, just two days before their 19-city tour, the Jonas Brothers canceled it due to a “deep rift within the band.” This was the only statement their spokesperson said, and it was not until almost two weeks later that two of the band members took to their Twitter accounts to make a brief statement. This exemplifies poor PR on the band’s publicity team, simply because they owe it to the fans to tell them what is going on. Communication is vital in order to maintain a relationship between an artist and their fans. No matter what the sudden situation is, professionals must always be on their feet and be ready to make a statement on the artist’s behalf when needed.

3. The label may drop your client. Due to financial reasons, decline in popularity, or a conflict between the artist and the label, the artist may be dropped. The key to resolving this problem is to promote the artist. This can be done through social media, being in contact with other record labels, booking studios sessions and having the artist put out new music, and also promote live appearances. It is important to get the artist back on its feet reestablish their career. Not only can professionals assist with the promoting aspect, but also share with the media their clients up and coming projects to keep fans up-to-date.

Though there are challenges with PR in the music industry, it is essential in this business. Yes, it is important to maintain a client’s image, but it is also imperative to provide services on behalf of the artist so they can essentially focus on their music. Dan Beesen, a publicist in Atlanta who works in the business, says PR is also important because it gives the opportunity for professionals to “secure press for them they never dreamed of landing.”  This is a win-win opportunity; the professional and client get to do their respective jobs and do what they do best. Think of it this way, without PR, we would not have the ordinary people who turn into extraordinary figures.


Anonymous said...

You go Glen Coco! Awesome work.

Anonymous said...

Great PR blog you have going here! The connections you draw between social trends and PR in the music industry are really helpful!

Levin Kamere said...

Love this blog Suzanne! I especially love the part about the subjectivity of music. Everyone interprets music differently and the individual captures the beautiful essence of music. Great work!

Charlie said...

Very insightful... thanks for posting this!