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How To Network In The Music Industry

Josh and Jake Kiszka of Greta Van Fleet
Photo by Bethany Hildebrandt

Let's face it - this industry is all about networking and who you know. You can have years of experience, tons of education, but do you have people supporting you? The music industry is all about who you know - we can't stress this enough. So whether you're a musician, music business student, publicist, journalist, sound engineer, lighting director, etc. you'll be needing to do some networking and do it well... Because this industry is super competitive.

#1 Utilize LinkedIn

In 2024, we've realized we have the tools we need to network online - Instagram, Tik Tok, Facebook, etc. but no platform compares to LinkedIn when it comes to networking... I mean, that's the entire point of the platform! As it was designed to encourage people to find the next step in their careers, it's also a professional community where you never know who you'll cross paths with. While you'll definitely come across tops of possible opportunities for yourself, you'll also be making connections with music industry veterans such as big record label producers, CEOs, artist managers, artist publicists, industry executives and so much more. You never know when you'll need to reach out to a certain industry contact and they will most likely only be a message away.

#2 Utilize Instagram

If we didn't get it through your head to utilize LinkedIn, we need you to get it through your head to utilize Instagram. You're most likely already scrolling through Instagram at least once a day, so why not use it to network as well? The easiest way to network through Instagram is to simply search hashtags. One of our best ways we find new music and artists is through Instagram hashtags and that's how we're connected with new artists and build relationships. Some helpful hashtags we've used for finding new music have been "poppunk", "newmusic", "rock", "rockartist", "rockband", etc. If you're a publicist looking to add some outlets to your media list, the best way to utilize the platform is to search hashtags like "musicblog", "musicpublication", "indiemusicblog", "musicpublication", etc. Once you've found a media outlet that you think will work for your artist, use the account suggestion button! Normally when you follow an account on Instagram, automatic suggestions pop up and will show you similar accounts to the one you just followed. You can find artists, record labels, public relations companies, entertainment companies, media outlets, etc. this way.

Hannah Wicklund performing in St. Louis
Photo by Bethany Hildebrandt

#3 Work At A Concert Venue

From personal experience, I can truthfully say deciding to work at a concert venue was one of the best decisions of my life. The people you work with and meet are all so amazing and more often than not, they share a passion for music with you. Working at a concert venue will get you an experience like no other (way more fun than a 9-5) by encouraging you to think outside the box and put your big kid pants on. From crowd watching, to working security, to managing shows, handling merchandise sales, bartending, and so much more, you can network like a champ while working at a venue. Whether it's your supervisor that's worked there for eight years, your manager who's worked there since the beginning, or a production manager who encouraged you to take a risk, venue workers can become crucial references and connections in your music career.

#4 Network With Who You Know

Chances are, you know someone who works in the music industry. And if you know you do, why not reach out to them? If you know someone who works at a venue, for a label, with an artist, etc. what's stopping you from emailing or texting them? In our opinion, we're all here to help each other out in the industry. Maybe you're a music publication editor wanting to know how to break into PR and you've realized you work with a ton of publicists all the time! Or maybe you're a publicist wanting to get some advice from editors on how you could help by making pitches easier into inboxes. Maybe you're a label executive who worked with a publicist on just one project, but you loved their approach to the whole PR experience. Maybe you have friends who work the industry and feel inspired by what they're doing and want to jump into it. All in all, networking with who you already know is super helpful because who you know will help you go far.

#5 Join Facebook Groups

We know what you're thinking. It's 2024, Facebook's dead... But is it really? There are a TON of networking groups on Facebook that have connected people, given people their first step towards an industry career, connected fans to become longtime friends and so much more. Some of our favorite groups are: Girls Behind The Rock Show, Press Connect, Amplify Her Voice, Diversify The Stage and tons more.


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