why we need music publicity

How did you find out about your favorite band? Radio? A friend? Concert? Social media? Whatever the reason, that musician or act’s music most likely didn’t reach your ears without some help. A little promotion. A professional that sent their single to radio stations, sent that tweet update, or helped book that concert. This is why we need music publicity. A dedicaThe future of the capital markets industryted fan with the skills to help music reach the masses.

Just in case you’re a visual person (and don’t worry, I am too!) I took the liberty of making a fun little infographic to help illustrate why my intended field is so important. And honestly, this went way better than the botched photoshop attempt I did last semester. It was rough. Keep in mind that this isn’t a definite list, but highlights some key points such as:

Social Media Campaigning

Twitter, Facebook, Instagram. Probably how you find out about where your favorite artist is performing next, or the link to their new single. Publicists plan these campaigns and time it so certain content reaches audiences at certain times. For instance, the new album isn’t going to drop at 3 a.m.

Album/Single Premieres

Kiss FM didn’t magically obtain the single from some secret safe in the frozen tundra. PR reps send these out to radios and blogs to get the coverage.

Concert Planning

Booking agents have to have decent communication with the publicist to plan which dates work best around appearances, and which venues are going to benefit the audience most. For example, if most of the demographic of an artist is below 18, the artist probably wouldn’t want to play at a bar. Image in concert is important and needs proper exposure.

Interview Scheduling

Imagine how awkward it would be for a country artist to appear on a rock and roll MTV segment. PR reps have a press list for each specific artist they represent, so fans of a genre could migrate to similar music. Most press releases made are already geared towards a specific genre to make things easier.

I love my future career. I’m a dedicated fan at heart, and that’s all I’ll ever be. Adding a cool fancy title to what I love is just an added bonus. I can’t explain how relieved I am that I’ve found what I love to do. I feel lucky. Not many people can say that at my age.

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This semester, I took a Public Relations class.

It seemed like this class was a good fit for my degree path; Communications with double concentrations in Public Relations and Media Studies. It also may have been required. But nevertheless, I took the class.

COMM 368 is one of the best classes I have taken in my long, seasoned career of almost two years as a college student. The amount of real world jumps I’ve taken because of this class is insane. This class is no bullshit. Every session gives you more experience, more exposure, more connections. That’s what I loved. Everything we did had a purpose. The course as a whole is fundamentally constructive to personal development. The assignments were structured to build professionalism. There was nothing we did for nothing. That being said, we did a lot, but it was all for the greater good.

Let me put it this way. After this class, I have a fully functioning LinkedIn account with 70+ colleagues and professional connections, another website to put on a resume, two BEAUTIFUL resumes, a bomb personal statement and elevator pitch, an amazing cover letter, and three internship interviews. I’m not just leaving this class with an “A”. I’m leaving this class with an idea of what it takes in my field.

I can’t think of a better way the class could be structured or conducted. It took something I had to do and ignited a passion to go along with it by instruction. That’s the thing about Mullen, she has the one thing a professor seems to lack: passion for her students’ success. Everything she does is for her students. Don’t get me wrong, while engaging and fun, this class is difficult. But if you’re passionate, you do well. I think that’s been the underlying message of this entire class. It’s definitely something Mullen repeats often. But, whatever the case, whatever the reason, whatever forever…I will always be grateful for 368.

 

how to: stylishly run for president in 1960

One of the most intriguing moments in political history to me is the first televised presidential debate in 1960. Between Senator John F. Kennedy and Vice President Richard Nixon, it was taped and broadcast from Chicago, Illinois. Also, a major turning point in the election. Why?

JFK has style.

Let’s do a hot take on the two candidates, shall we?

Innnnn this corner, we have attractive, 43 year old blonde hair blue eyed wonder, with a charming southern drawl and amazing tan. He’s got an opinion on foreign policy, and, sure, he’s never been in the White House before, but would you look at that smile?

Annnnd in this corner, we have our current VP, who admittedly, does a lot. But why does he look so sick? Gracious, he’s sweating bullets and can’t stand still. That’s not the confident look of a president. Who cares about his points, we want visual appeal!!!

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My first thought: “Beauty and the cheese ball.” Poor guy. Image courtesy of flickr.com.

To put it frankly, JFK was hot. And his campaign managers knew this. So they used his Ken doll appearance to help him win the election. JFK’s campaign was largely visual and played upon his charm. That’s why his team urged him to challenge Nixon to the nation’s first televised debate. That’s why JFK visited the set the day before and made sure he knew where the cameras would be so he could speak directly to voters. During the debate, he was confident, collected, and educated. Rich Nix, on the other hand, staggered in straight from the hospital in a grey suit that blended into the set, fidgeted the whole time, ignored the cameras, and sweated profusely. While Jackie O had nothing but good things to say about her husband’s performance, Mama Nixon was concerned about her son’s appearance, as History.com puts it.

“When the first debate ended, the future first lady reportedly concluded, “I think my husband was brilliant.” Meanwhile, Nixon’s mother immediately called her son to ask if he was ill.”

The unanimous decision for the 88% of American households who tuned into the broadcast? JFK took it home in a landslide.

The genius campaign strategy here is JFK’s team exploiting the mess out of his visual campaign for the duration of the election period. From appearances to television, our boy did it all. And there’s no doubt that his charisma played a significant part in the election of the modern era. The televised debate shows that looks do matter when running to not only be the voice, but the face of the country. That’s why this debate is so important. That’s why it was a turning point, and the day after, the polls had a record number of attendees.

Playing to your strengths is the name of this game. Nixon may have been experienced, but he wasn’t cute.

pr: publicists rock!

Why do I want to do what I do? What’s so cool about music publicity, anyway? What kind of music do you even listen to? When do you have time to order Jimmy John’s?!

All viable questions.

While the answer to the last one is, “There’s always time if you’re ordering Jimmy John’s”, I caught up with amazing music publicist Candace Brown of Big Picture Media to enforce why music publicity is the coolest job ever. (Disclaimer: this might make you even more excited to graduate and get started in your field, because that’s surely what it did for me). A few of the artists Candace represents I have written features about on the site I intern for, AudibleAddixion.com, so I was stoked catching the opportunity to reach out to her for an interview. 1619278_10153316267843067_3313299658872567269_n

So, okay. Being a music publicist. What does that even mean, what do you even do? For Candace, her day starts around 9:45, and after answering emails, the next phase is creating a to-do list and tackling it. While the concept of to-do lists can hit a point of annoying things you don’t want to do, keep in mind that Candace’s to-do lists look a little less like “Study for that test you forget you have tomorrow”, and a little more like “Premiere pitch a new album, email outlets for song placements//features/interviews, and chat with clients about their campaigns”.

In my opinion, one of the most fundamentally successful elements of PR is making sure your clients are accurately represented to their standards. JoLivi is an artist Candace represents, and recently, the buzz from her single “Love Who You Wanna Love”, which premiered with Bust Magazine, opportunities with Perez Hilton, Stardust, and Shazam have risen. The exposure of JoLivi and the single is a project Candace is especially proud to be a part of. And I know that feeling is something I can’t wait for-pride when your client is killin’ it. One of Candace’s suggestions for someone who’s just starting in the industry is to work with clients you’re passionate about. Being a PR professional is driven with passion about what you’re representing. Because you best believe that Derek Taylor was rockin’ out to “A Hard Day’s Night”, “I Wanna Hold Your Hand”, and “Eleanor Rigby” all the time, and was probably a bigger fan than our grandmothers.

One of my favorite bands, Have Mercy, did an interview with The Stroll Show. How do I know this? I just checked my Instagram account, where I follow my favorite artists, publicity companies, and music outlets. Staying current with social media is equivalent to staying current in the industry, according to Candace. Plus, it helps to have friends who are equally obsessed with music, so timelines are always filled with music, anyway.

But with social media, one has to be careful about their writing skills. If you take Mullen’s class with me, you know how adamant she is about telling the truth and writing with intelligent vigor. Writing is so crucial in PR. It separates professionalism and being taken seriously from “Why should this outlet care about your press release if you can’t spell their company name correctly?”. Not only is spell check important, but writing is a chance to flex your creativity and captivate. I used to have trouble with going against the grain when typing up press releases in efforts to maintain professionalism.

And the important thing about that is being yourself and staying true to who you are. That’s the major thing Candace’s company looks for when hiring; that’s what makes you stand out. And when you need time to yourself, take it! I know that while having two jobs, two internships, a sorority membership, and being a full time student, if I don’t take my Wednesday and Friday naps, I’m off my game. The same matters in the industry.

So I want to end this post with a huge, huge thanks to Candace for not only representing some awesome bands that I’ve had the privilege to do write ups/features on, but taking the time out of her busy, busy schedule to catch up with me.

Thanks for reading, friends! And remember Mullen’s professional-approved advice:

MAKE CONNECTIONS.

coac-hella awkward…

Over the weekend, the hipster community’s favorite event celebrated its first wave all across Cali (specfically Indio, because that’s where it takes place)–the popular music festival known as Coachella, where the super rich and famous dress up in Woodstock-era clothing to see the super rich and musically famous perform. It’s a celebration of music, culture, and dancing. What Coachella isn’t, however, is a technology free for all, where it’s expected to have your phone stolen.

Unfortunately, some people didn’t get the memo. Because earlier today, news broke out of a man caught for stealing over 100 iPhones at Coachella. Instantly, you think: How?!

Well, he had no secret; Reinaldo De Jesus Henao, 36, is just really good at stealing. He was caught though, when victims started whipping out their other Apple products and turned on that handy “Find My iPhone” app.

Henao was taken into custody on Friday in a statement made by the Indio Police

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The “lost and found” area at Coachella. Photo courtesy of “Consequence of Sound” (an amazing blog!!!) .

Department. The festival also has the phones recovered from Henao’s backpack in their lost and found area, and according to their site, there’s currently 360 unclaimed items.

Coachella as a festival has it easy in this fiasco, because they can pull the “any lost or stolen items aren’t our responsibility” thing, and the lost and found page is a great CYA tool. (That’s CYA for “Cover Your…”)

However, I think it’s interesting that this guy was able to knick over 100 phones before he was caught and arrested. 100! You’d think attending a festival as popular and crowded as Coachella would make you think to take better care of your phone. It was good on Coachella and the PD to get the situation quickly handled, though. In my opinion, this story is only popular because of the amount of phones that were stolen, and the number could’ve easily fluctuated. I hate to be the mom in situations like these, but just remember everyone, the next time you go to a music festival, keep track of your personal items, or else things could get coac-hella awkward…

binge blog: tips for blogging

I know, I know. Who do I think I am, right? First post and I already think I run this town. And what’s with all the lowercase, anyway? (Answer: aesthetic). So allow me to introduce myself if you ignored my handy “about” page.

Kayla, 19, communications student, intern, proud supporter of mashed potatoes, alternative bands, Fallout 4, and Captain America…oh, and I may run a blog…or four. (Here’s two of them, here and here.) I also write for a professional online music publication. So you could say I know my way around the good ‘ol online posting game.

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My friend Dylan’s room, where I got the inspiration to begin music blogging. I saw his reflection of music in public, I wanted my own.

Still with me? Thanks for that. Now that my credentials are out of the way, let’s get to the nitty gritty. Key tips (and there are no tricks) to blogging from my experience, in 3…2…1…

1. Love What You Do.

Folks, I can’t stress this enough. You have to blog about what you love. Otherwise, why even blog? Think about how much you would hate updating a website biweekly about vegan restaurants in Chicago if your favorite place is Texas Roadhouse. Abby Lawson said it best.  Music is my jam, all my blogs are music based. And I love it. I always have something to talk about. Boom.

2. Spell Check. Seriously.

Because how will you efficiently communicate your articulate ideas and passionate feelings about a certain subject if your writing isn’t as articulate and passionate? You’re an amazing independent mind, come off as one. Squiggly red lines are friends, don’t ignore them. They’re on our side.

3. Confidence in Content. 

Believe in yourself and your posts. You know what you’re talking about, and if you don’t, write about how it was trying to figure that out! Trial and error. It’s a common and normal human practice. We all go through it. Flaunt that individual voice, because the cool thing about that is…you’re the only one who gets to have it!! How dope, right?! Don’t be afraid to be who you really are. After all, blogging is a reflection of you. In my opinion, the best blogs aren’t stiff and impersonal. They’re sprinkled with flavor and fueled with drive. So set up that free account, ignore your analytics, and start typing about what you love.