What Music Festival Promoters Do

In Music Festivals, Planning Your Event by Jordan BirnholtzLeave a Comment

*Featured photo by Gavin Whitner – MusicOomph.com

“Music Festival Promoter” is sort of a nebulous job title, non? I mean, I could start calling myself a “Music Festival Promoter” tomorrow, make myself business cards and set up shop in my basement. Then, at the next twelve cocktail parties that my husband drags me to, I shall tell everyone “Yea man, I’m like, a music festival promoter, you know?”

Certainly, I’ll be the life of the party.

The Secret Lives of Music Festival Promoters

Upon further investigation, it seems that my initial understanding of what a music festival promoter does — an understanding that I developed solely based on one experience with one very drunk Nashville bar patron — is completely false. It turns out that music festival promoters do a lot for the industry and that the right promoter can make or break your festival.

Here’s a quick rundown of everything that a music festival promoter does:

  • Find a place to hold the festival. This can be everything from an outdoor arena to someone’s decrepit farm.
  • Battle with the bureaucracy of modern society to secure all the necessary permits to host the festival. Want alcohol? You need a permit! Want to ensure that everyone who shows up to your festival isn’t arrested on the spot? You need a permit!
  • Find and book all the artists who will perform at the festival. You can call yourself a music festival but if your promoter doesn’t book any musical acts, you probably aren’t going to do so well.
  • Draw up agreements with all the vendors who will vend their wares at the music festival. You know how sometimes you just really need an elephant ear and a beer? Music festival promoters make it possible for you to consume your tasty snack.
  • Call all the applicable media outlets to ensure that people everywhere know about the festival.

Does my list seem incomplete to you? It should. The most important thing that a music festival promoter does is sell tickets.

Can’t have a music festival without festival-goers. Can’t have festival-goers unless you sell tickets.

Need help getting the ball rolling on your next adventure as a music festival promoter? Leave a comment or shoot us an email!e that you have the right balance of these four basic vendors, you’ll be on your way to success!