International Music Marketing: Developing Your Music Career Abroad


Authored by Shain Shapiro


Course Code: OMBUS-320

Next semester
starts June 24

12 Weeks

Level 3

Level 3

3-Credit Tuition


Non-Credit Tuition


International Music Marketing is designed for artists who want to manage their own careers internationally, and managers and aspiring managers who want to develop their clients’ careers internationally while improving their own business skills. This course introduces the strategies and new structures emerging in the global music industry. It will teach you not only how to manage your music internationally, but also how to profit from your efforts. In the past, the easiest way to develop a music career abroad was to sign a licensing or publishing deal with an overseas representative, major or indie, and have them handle your international business affairs. Now, musicians and managers can release, market, publish, tour, and export music on their own but it requires time, expertise, and strategy. In this course, you will learn that there is more to the music industry than the US, UK, and Japan, and that copyrights—an artist’s pension—can be manipulated, restructured, and sold in myriad ways to enhance opportunities abroad. You will also learn about analytics and big data and how to leverage them to know what works where.

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By the end of the course, you will be able to:

  • Develop a music internationalization checklist, which will help define when an artist is deemed export ready
  • Work with music export offices around the world
  • Make the most of international festival opportunities
  • Use analytics to maximize the impact of export activities
  • Take advantage of new revenue opportunities, new ways of manipulating copyrights, and new markets
  • Manage the release of recordings internationally
  • Manage licensing abroad
  • Geo-target marketing campaigns and music tours
  • Understand visas and withholding tax
  • Conduct an independent, international PR campaign
  • Maximize returns from merchandise, sync, and ringback tones
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Lesson 1: Are You Export Ready? Let's Start Developing Your Career Abroad

  • What is Music Export?
  • The Music Marketing Export Checklist and Impact Statement
  • Genre: What Do We Know?
  • Music Genres
  • Music Export Offices
  • Assignment 1: Impact Statement and Music Export Checklist

Lesson 2: Researching International Music Scenes

  • Refining Your Checklist
  • Artist Spotlight: The Hu
  • Terminology
  • Territorial Releasing and Lead Territories
  • Tricks of the Trade
  • Secondary Territories: Who Listens to Who?
  • What Are You Researching?
  • Planning for Your Release
  • Geography Matters: Look at the Specifics
  • Introductory Emails: Making New International Contacts
  • Assignment 2: National Music Scenes

Lesson 3: Export 101

  • Touchpoints
  • Realize That You Are a Brand
  • Artist Spotlight: Pa Salieu
  • Assets
  • What Is the Point?
  • Assignment 3: Export 101

Lesson 4: Understanding and Marketing Your Strengths

  • Back to Touchpoints
  • Back to Tools of the Trade
  • Hints Galore
  • Measuring Our Measurements and Social Media Primer—The Game Plan Social Media Primer—Territorial Style
  • Artist Spotlight: Massive Attack
  • Back to Being Sociable
  • The Industry and Geo-Targeting: The New Normal in Marketing
  • Analytics Platforms and Geo-Tracking
  • Analytics: Administration and Reporting
  • Gamifying Analytics
  • Assignment 4: Your Market

Lesson 5: Rights and Administration: Legal Requirements Abroad

  • Administrating Rights
  • Be Ready to Provide Information
  • Submitting Setlists
  • Expanding the Checklist
  • Merch Questions, Answered
  • Exploiting Your Protected Resources
  • Golden Rules of Sub-Publishing
  • Visas—Demystifying the Process
  • Withholding Tax
  • Assignment 5: Rights and Administration

Lesson 6: Working with PR, Radio, and Digital Media

  • Image Is Everything
  • Taking Control of Your Product's Image
  • Artist Bios
  • Assets, Assets, Assets
  • Image, Media, and Marketing
  • The Personal Touch and Golden Rules of Contacting a Journalist
  • Working with PR Companies
  • Radio and Radio Pluggers
  • Digital PR and Contacting a PR Agency
  • Pick the Right PR for You
  • Comparing the UK, USA, Germany, and France
  • PR Companies in Key Territories
  • Managing a Campaign and Reporting and Good Management
  • Assignment 6: Working with PR, Radio, and Digital Media

Lesson 7: Tour de Force: International Booking Primer

  • Know Your Targets in a Post-Pandemic World
  • Live Touring
  • Accommodations
  • Tour Managers
  • Other Crew Costs
  • Touring Tips!
  • Booking Agents
  • The UK Agent's Power
  • The CODA Agency and the Public Faces of Agencies
  • Germany
  • Selective Artists and the Importance of Genre
  • Territories by Genre
  • New Markets and Opportunities: Assessing Risks
  • Putting Your Knowledge into Practice
  • Follow Up with Agent and Manager
  • Assets and More Case Studies
  • Assignment 7: International Booking and Touring

Lesson 8: The Rise of the International Showcase Festival

  • Showcase Festivals 101
  • Showcase Festival Tips
  • Why Showcase Festivals Matter and Performance Tactics
  • This Is Not a Show
  • How to Network at Showcase Festivals
  • Socializing and Enhancing Your Standing
  • The Backend System and the Discovery Process
  • Think Big and Keep an Open Mind
  • Assignment 8: Planning for an International Showcase

Lesson 9: New Revenue Opportunities and Their Impact on Music and Career Development Abroad

  • New Funding Models in the Digital Space
  • Culture Vultures and Sub-Publishing
  • Being Pragmatic
  • Advanced Country Indexes: Germany
  • Advanced Country Indexes: Mexico and Colombia
  • What You Need to Know
  • Home vs. Abroad
  • Bundling and New Ideas
  • Live Concert Streaming
  • NFTs
  • Assignment 9: Non-Traditional Revenue Opportunities

Lesson 10: You and Label Services: Managing Campaigns and Expectations

  • Artist and Label Services
  • Comparing A&L and Licensing
  • Case Study: AViVA
  • A&L Services Options
  • Services in the UK, France, and Germany
  • Think Globally . . . Sometimes Act Locally
  • Streaming
  • Playlisting
  • Assignment 10: Designing a Complete Marketing and Business Plan

Lesson 11: Expanding into New Markets

  • Live Opportunities in Latin and South America
  • Promoter Structure and Case Study: Lotus Productions
  • Festival Expansion: What It Means in Developing Markets
  • Traveling Festivals and Block-Booking
  • Promoter Spotlight: German Andrade (Matrix Entertainment)
  • Changing Rules
  • Case Study: South Africa
  • Case Study: Mexico
  • Assignment 11: Expanding into New Markets

Lesson 12: Final Project

  • Taking a Step Back and Prioritizing
  • Golden Rules Revisited
  • Putting It All Together
  • Assignment 12: Final Assignment


Prerequisites and Course-Specific Requirements 

Prerequisite Courses, Knowledge, and/or Skills
Completion of Music Marketing 101 or Music Business Trends and Strategies, or equivalent knowledge and/or experience is required.
Students should have basic knowledge of the music industry, including an understanding of copyright, publishing, and licensing arrangements.


Student Deals
After enrolling, be sure to check out our Student Deals page for various offers on software, hardware, and more. Please contact with any questions.

General Course Requirements

Below are the minimum requirements to access the course environment and participate in Live Classes. Please make sure to also check the Prerequisites and Course-Specific Requirements section above, and ensure your computer meets or exceeds the minimum system requirements for all software needed for your course. 

Mac Users

PC Users

All Users

  • Latest version of Google Chrome
  • Zoom meeting software
  • Webcam
  • Speakers or headphones
  • External or internal microphone
  • Broadband Internet connection


Shain Shapiro


Originally from Toronto, Canada, Dr. Shain Shapiro has worked in the music industry for over 15 years, including (before founding Sound Diplomacy) over three years as the UK and European Representative of the Canadian Independent Music Association. In this role, he helped produce over 100 showcases across Europe, working with 500 bands in the process. Before that, he was the UK Press Manager for One Little Indian and FatCat Records and an internationally published music journalist, working for Timeout, VICE, and others. He holds a PhD from Birkbeck, University of London, with his dissertation titled “The History of Popular Music Funding in Canada. He has advised on the Momentum Music Fund, guest lectures at four universities in three countries and has spoken at MIDEM, SXSW, WOMEX, Liverpool Soundcity, Eurosonic, Canadian Music Week, and over 30 other festivals and conferences.

Tony Boden


Tony Boden is a booking agent, consultant, panellist and label partner with a background in show promotion and management. He started promoting shows back in 2006 in Brighton, UK before moving on to become a booking agent in summer 2007. Since then he has had experience in booking a host of acts across a variety of different musical genres throughout Europe, Scandinavia, Russia, Latin America, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, South East Asia and India. These have included headlining and supporting tours as well as festivals. He is now an agent with Northern Music Co. Live and continues to represent a powerful and diverse live roster.

What's Next?

When taken for credit, International Music Marketing: Developing Your Music Career Abroad can be applied towards the completion of these related programs:

Related Degree Majors


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