Public Relations in the Music Industry

Everybody loves music, but what is it that gets the people of our country to develop a certain image of our favorite pop celebrity or rock star? The public relations team, that’s what. The PR teams of each and every music star or company can make or break their artist through various forms of media. This is seen very clearly through the newest genre of music, electronic music.

Electronic music has boomed since the beginning of the 1990’s with house music and trance capturing the audience. Popular DJ’s such as Deadmau5 and DJ Tiësto brought electronic music from the underground club scene into the mainstream media. In 1999 Ultra Records, one of the largest electronic labels in the music industry, created one of the highest grossing music festivals in the world, Ultra Music Festival. How does the PR team for Ultra hype up not only people in Miami and the surrounding area, but also people across the entire globe and attract hundreds of thousands of people?

There is no doubt that one of the largest reasons people come to the biggest nightlife event of the year, is because of the incredible reputations of these DJs. The easiest way to hype a crowd up is to give them some of the biggest names in the electronic genre. Ultra, from the moment they sign any artist, begins creating an image for that artist up, so that one day he can hit the same level as the DJ “juggernauts” that you hear all over the radio and in clubs across the country. Ultra Records publicizes these artists and gets them as much “play time” as possible whether it is through music websites with new releases, the radio, or in smaller venues and clubs.

Radio plays a very large role in the Publicizing someone in the music industry. Ultra Music Fest advertises on satellite radio (XM 80 and 81) which creates a good image of not only the artists but the festival as well.  Not only does Ultra Music Festival have its own radio show (Friday at 6:00 p.m. XM 80), but a majority of the artists playing on these stations are all signed to Ultra Records (including big names such as Tiësto, Paul Oakenfold, Sweedish House Mafia, etc.)

There are many other ways that Ultra Records attracts people, whether it is through the mass amount of flyers handed out in Miami or the power of word of mouth, the festival’s Public Relations team has handled the large task of promoting a festival very well. I feel like the PR team for one of the top grossing music festivals in the United States (this being the first sold out 3-day single genre music festival ever in history) could not have done a better job in attracting fans to Miami and if they keep it up, the Ultra Music Festival will be around for many years to come.



James Sarris, Sophmore, Public Relations


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