The Business of Music Marketing


Authored by Mike King


Course Code: OMBUS-522

Accepting applications for the inaugural Sept. 2018 class!

3-Credit, Graduate Level Course

In The Business of Music Marketing, you will gain a professional-level knowledge of cutting edge marketing techniques essential for any music-centric business. Starting with evergreen marketing best practices, you will learn specific approaches for building an engaged community, applying different forms of media for visibility, and utilizing professional marketing tools to plan, execute, and report back on results. Learn how to plan and support a product release, create and execute an integrated marketing campaign, and explore ways to create and run a successful music business. You will master marketing philosophy and gain critical knowledge and skills for both music product and marketing. 

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

  • Synthesize web analytics to develop the niche of an artist or music product and target the relevant audience
  • Create an effective product and pricing strategy, along with a supporting business plan 
  • Create a professional music marketing plan
  • Analyze marketing segments available to musicians and music products, with a particular focus on online-related initiatives
  • Develop sophisticated approaches to marketing and selling music and music-related products online, including implementing web optimization strategies
  • Apply the essential pillars of successful music marketing campaigns 
  • Implement effective messaging, branding, and communication for artists or music-related companies

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Overview Syllabus Requirements Instructors Request Info


Lesson 1: Setting the Stage

  • What Is Music Marketing?
  • Product Trends in Music Business and Associated Marketing Opportunities
  • Inside the Business of Music Marketing: Tony McCall
  • Your Music Marketing Tool Kit
  • Assignment 1: Detail Marketing Campaign

Lesson 2: Branding

  • Branding Overview
  • Market and Brand Research
  • Inside the Business of Music Marketing: Jeff Jampol
  • Brand Stewardship
  • Assignment 2: Outline a Music Brand

Lesson 3: Engaging Your Community

  • Community Engagement Foundation
  • Effective Use of Tools to Build Your Community
  • Inside the Business of Music Marketing: Zoe Keating
  • Leveraging Your Community, and Offline Community Building Techniques
  • Assignment 3: Create a Community Building Plan

Lesson 4: Paid Media, Earned Media, Press, and Communication

  • Media Trifecta: Earned, Owned, and Paid Media
  • Paid Media: Google and YouTube, Paid Social, and Appropriate Third-Party Outlets
  • Earned Media: Press and Communication
  • Owned Media: Site, Blog, and Social
  • Inside the Business of Music Marketing: Russell Ward
  • Assignment 4: Outline Three Initiatives Coachella Can Improve

Lesson 5: Music Marketing Tools and Technology

  • State of the Union: An Integrated Approach to Music Marketing Tools
  • Inside the Business of Music Marketing: Michael Feinbach
  • Blockchain, Open Music Initiative, and Designing a Technical Platform to Help Artists Generate Revenue
  • Inside the Business of Music Marketing: Benji Rogers
  • Assignment 5: Create Your Own Music Marketing “Technology Stack”

Lesson 6: Online and Offline Music Marketing Visibility 

  • Effective Outreach Strategies for Traditional and Non-Traditional Physical Music Outlets
  • Effective Outreach Strategies for Traditional and Non-Traditional Online Music Outlets
  • Inside the Business of Music Marketing: Lauren Ross
  • Assignment 6: Utilize Online and Offline Tools and Techniques

Lesson 7: Go to Market Strategy

  • Unit Economics
  • Product Launch
  • Inside the Business of Music Marketing: Christopher O’Donnell
  • Pricing and Participation
  • Assignment 7: Create a Music Product and Pricing Plan

Lesson 8: Marketing Creative

  • Identifying Your Goals and Associated Outlets
  • Campaign Strategy: Creative Alignment
  • Inside the Business of Music Marketing: Rob Cosinuke
  • SEO Considerations, Testing, and Execution
  • Assignment 8: Create an Effective Marketing Creative

Lesson 9: Marketing and Sales Data Analytics

  • Capturing Effective Data
  • Data Visualization
  • Inside the Business of Music Marketing: Alex White
  • Utilizing Data to Make Marketing Decisions
  • Assignment 9: Outline the Most Important Trends

Lesson 10: Starting and Operating a Music-Focused Business

  • Identifying Your Target Market
  • Creating a Business Plan
  • Inside the Business of Music Marketing: David Macias
  • Building Your Team and Raising Capital
  • Assignment 10: Create a Business Plan

Lesson 11: Presenting Your Marketing Ideas

  • Creating a Marketing Plan
  • Public Speaking and Presentation
  • Inside the Business of Music Marketing: Seth Godin
  • Effective Use of Presentation Utilizing Audio and Visuals
  • Assignment 11: Marketing Plan

Lesson 12: Marketing Case Study Deep Dives: Planning, Execution, Results

  • Madame Ghandi: Kirin Ghandi on Growing a Base
  • Charlie Puth: Utilizing YouTube for Marketing Success
  • Jason Feinberg/Pandora: Product Release Essentials
  • Dave Balter/BzzAgent


Recommended Textbooks

Permission Marketing by Seth Godin, Pocket Books

Software Requirements

Mac Users

  • OS X 10.9 Mavericks or higher (click here for system requirements)
  • Latest version of Google Chrome

Windows Users

  • Windows 7 or higher (click here for system requirements)
  • Latest version of Google Chrome

Hardware Requirements

  • 500 MB hard drive space
  • Speakers or headphones
  • Webcam
  • Internet connection with at least 4 Mbps download speed ( to verify or download the Speedtest by Ookla app from your mobile app store)




Mike King is a course author, instructor, and the Vice President of Enrollment at Berklee College of Music and Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) at Berklee Online. Prior to working at Berklee, Mike was the Marketing/Product Manager at Rykodisc, where he oversaw marketing efforts for label artists including Mickey Hart, Jeb Loy Nichols, Morphine, Jess Klein, Voices On The Verge, Bill Hicks, The Slip, Pork Tornado (Phish), Kelly Joe Phelps, and Frank Zappa's estate. Mike was the Director of Marketing and Managing Editor of Herb Alpert's online musician's resource, ArtistsHouseMusic, for three years.

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Mike has written and teaches three courses for Berklee Online: Music Marketing 101; Online Music Marketing: Campaign Strategies, Social Media, and Digital Distribution; and Music Business Trends and Strategies. His book, Music Marketing: Press, Promotion, Distribution, and Retail was published by Berklee Press in 2009. Mike was recognized as the Best Music Business Teacher by the National Association of Record Industry Professionals (NARIP) in 2011.

Mike has written for Making Music magazine, International Musician, Hypebot, and American Songwriter, and has been quoted in NPR Morning Edition, the Huffington Post, Billboard, The Boston Globe, Wired, CNN, the Boston Phoenix, The Chicago Tribune, Music Connection, and Muso. He's also presented at MIDEM, CMJ, SXSW, NAMM, NARM, SF Music Tech, Futures of Entertainment @ MIT, and Music 2.0. Read Less


Contact our Academic Advisors by phone at 1-866-BERKLEE (U.S.), 1-617-747-2146 (INT'L), or by email at

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