COURSE OVERVIEW

The practical BA (Hons) Music Business and Entrepreneurship is the first music business degree in the UK to give equal weighting to the concept of ‘entrepreneurship’. This groundbreaking programme promotes enterprise and innovation across all three years, and will see you tackle real-world industry projects, all with the aim of encouraging your natural creativity and entrepreneurial spirit.

This music business course is perfect for those wanting to establish a multi-skilled, entrepreneurial career within the music and wider creative industries, and will provide you with the tools, opportunities and experience to develop your music business career. The emphasis on entrepreneurship means you’ll be encouraged and supported to launch and run your own business, with the ability to pitch your ideas as part of NatWest’s Entrepreneur Accelerator programme.

You’ll learn a wide range of management, business and creative skills in small, personalised learning groups, and will be taught by established music industry executives whose aim is to help you maximise the creative and commercial potential of the artist–business relationship. The encouragement of collaboration at ICMP will see you work in partnership with fellow student musicians from the college’s talent pool, promoting and managing them as creative artists as part of your course content.

You’ll discover every aspect of the music business first-hand through sessions with special music industry guest visitors, and attendance at music conferences as delegates, as well as other industry networking events.

ICMP’s unique and innovative programme has been developed and designed courtesy of a high level of consultation from the music business, with ongoing external feedback provided by global music organisations such as Island Records, Warner/Chappell Music, Live Nation, PRS for Music, Music Week, BMG Rights, Music Managers Forum, Spotify, Brace Yourself PR and many more.

Our core aim for this degree is to help you break into the music industry while you’re still an ICMP student. That means that, upon graduation, you’ll be well versed in critically assessing new business opportunities and practices, and you’ll already have managed a variety of different music projects. You’ll be confident at communicating both orally and in writing, and will have developed a toolkit of ICT skills for application in the wider business environment.

You’ll be experienced at working both independently and as part of a team, and will possess the ability to organise, identify problems, exercise initiative, select and implement effective solutions, and meet strict deadlines and targets. In fact, if you’re not already operating a portfolio career in the music industry well before you graduate, we’d be very surprised.

Fees & Funding

Taking a Music Business degree course at ICMP makes financial sense too, with the fees for ICMP music degrees the same as those at many traditional universities - making studying music at ICMP in London great value as well as great fun. 

Course Fees: UK Students | EU/EEA/International Students

Please visit our Fees pages for information on access to Student Loans. Students eligible for loans are able to borrow the full annual course fee for ICMP degrees, unlike many other UK music schools where students are required to pay additional top-up fees themselves.

Programme Specification

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Successful completion of the BA (Hons) Music Business and Entrepreneurship at ICMP leads to the award of Bachelor of Arts by the University of East London.

Redesigned for 2021
This course has recently gone through a redesign process with our validating partner UEL, making it one of the most current Music Business degree courses in the UK. Please visit https://www.icmp.ac.uk/study-at-icmp/2021-course-redesign for further detail on why we periodically redesign our courses and the benefits this has to you as an ICMP student.
 

 

 

icmplifeCourse Ambassador

Seven Webster

Music industry pioneer Seven Webster is the ambassador for this course. 

His management company has launched the careers of numerous top 40 artists and DJs over the last 30 years, including superstar DJs Sasha, John Digweed and Carl Cox and multi-million selling Dido and rock band Skindred. 

UCAS CODES

Key facts

  • Study entrepreneurship and innovation at each year level through real-world industry projects.
  • Learn in a creative and inspiring environment as you collaborate with, manage and promote fellow student artists from ICMP’s rich talent pool. 
  • Develop your management, business and creative skills to maximise the potential of the artist–business relationship.
  • Learn how to be your own boss.
  • Make extensive music connections to build an impressive business network.
  • Study course content designed with extensive input from top UK music industry individuals and organisations.
  • Explore entrepreneurship in London – a global music industry city offering copious opportunities to develop your ideas.
  • Attend music conferences and college networking events and connect with music business guests.
  • Study in small groups in world-class facilities, with a high number of contact teaching hours.
  • Apply Now

Student Stories

Grace Hamberger

Grace discusses her experiences on the course as an artist, including collaborating with other ICMP students.

Eve Norman

Eve talks about the benefit of our guest lecture series, which included a visit from Billie Eilish's Marketing Manager.

COURSE DETAILS

Year 1 (Level 4)

Year 2 (Level 5)

Year 3 (Level 6)

In Year 1, you’ll be introduced to the full spectrum of music business and entrepreneurship topics. You’ll gain a good grasp of the music industry landscape and structure, while also studying its historical context. Music marketing and promotional strategies will be explored from an entrepreneurial viewpoint, and you’ll create an international live music tour book for an artist. You’ll complete your first year with a strong understanding of what it takes to manage a creative individual, both personally and professionally.

PRINCIPLES OF ENTREPRENEURSHIP AND MARKETING

This module introduces the principles of entrepreneurship and marketing, and how these can be effectively implemented, specifically in the context of the music industry. You’ll learn about the characteristics of successful entrepreneurship and barriers to enterprise, as well as techniques for recognising new business opportunities and how they could be translated into successful ventures through feasibility analysis and customer-driven marketing strategies. You’ll develop a basic business plan and marketing strategy for a music business project, and will explore the concept of the artist as a brand, considering key areas such as brand partnerships, and commerce versus credibility in music.

  • Introduction to entrepreneurship
  • Entrepreneurial personality types
  • Recognising new business opportunities
  • Entrepreneurial barriers
  • The 4Ps of the marketing mix
  • Customer-driven marketing strategies
  • Market research
  • Consumer behaviour
  • Branding and brand partnerships
  • How to write a business plan

MUSIC INDUSTRY STRUCTURE

In this module, you’ll be introduced to the framework and functions of the modern music industry, exploring its three main sectors: recorded music, live music and publishing. You’ll examine current industry models, processes and practices to show how creatives and businesses interact, and will explore the inter-relationships between each area of the industry. You’ll learn about music copyright and the roles played by collection societies, professional membership organisations and trade bodies, and will cover the function of artist management, the A&R process, music marketing and promotion, sales and distribution, music rights and royalties, and a brief introduction to the various revenue streams.

  • Music publishing
  • Music copyright
  • The role of collection societies
  • A&R
  • The role of artist management
  • Music marketing and promotion
  • Music rights and royalties
  • Music sales and distribution
  • Music revenue streams

INTRODUCTION TO THE LIVE INDUSTRY

To be a successful music entrepreneur, you need to have a clear understanding of the business, legal and economic roles and relationships which underpin the live music industry. In this module, you’ll explore how live music tours are planned, budgeted and run, and will cover the key elements of tour planning such as artist contracts, riders, payment structures, technical requirements, hospitality and catering. You’ll gain first-hand experience of tour management by creating a tour book for an artist, mapping out a tour route and addressing international touring issues, such as obtaining work permits and dealing with the withholding of tax.

  • Introduction to music industry roles
  • Live music event budgeting
  • Live tour planning
  • Tour management strategies
  • The artist–agent relationship
  • Live event health and safety
  • Promoters and the media
  • How to obtain work permits
  • Live event taxation

THE EVOLVING MUSIC LANDSCAPE

This module examines the digital revolution which has occurred in music, its key technologies and practices, and its impact on performers, consumers and the global music industry as a whole. Through a series of case studies, you’ll explore key issues relevant to the evolution of the music industry landscape, such as the decline of the traditional record label model and the future of the recording industry; label services; new business models such as direct-to-fan, crowdfunding, access over ownership and streaming; the impact of digital on ticketing; sync, film, TV and gaming; and the future of music publishing.

  • The evolution of the music industry
  • The decline of the record label model
  • The future of music publishing
  • Direct-to-fan business models
  • Crowdfunding
  • Digital ticketing
  • Streaming and ownership
  • Sync for film, TV and gaming

PROMOTIONAL STRATEGIES

Through this highly practical module, you’ll gain a solid grounding in the concepts of music marketing, promotion and digital distribution. Working on your own real-world project, you’ll learn how to develop a fully effective, low-budget plan for a successful product launch campaign and will be able to deploy integrated promotional strategies based on detailed market analysis and research, effective marketing techniques, and engaging branding and communication methods. Some areas covered include DIY strategies, social media, viral marketing, press and PR, blogging, online presence building, digital platforms, streaming playlists, creating low-budget music videos, merchandise and the role of advertising agencies.

  • How to create an integrated promotional campaign
  • Market research and analysis
  • How to create engaging branding
  • Viral marketing strategies
  • Social media and the role of content
  • How to write a press release
  • Creating low-budget music videos
  • Streaming playlists
  • Logo design
  • The role of advertising and PR agencies

THE MUSIC BUSINESS: A CONCISE HISTORY

In this module, you’ll research the key social, cultural and economic factors in the formation and evolution of the modern music business. Following the chronology of popular music from the post 1945 era up to the present day, significant genres and movements which served to map the story of popular music will be explored in an academic context. These include Tin Pan Alley and the foundations of early rock ‘n’ roll, through to The Beatles and the ‘British Invasion’ of the ‘60s, right up to glam rock, disco and punk in the ‘70s, and today’s hip hop, rap, EDM, indie and grime.

  • Popular music genres and styles
  • Social, cultural and economic music factors
  • The jazz age
  • Early rock ‘n’ roll
  • The British Invasion
  • 1970s punk
  • Hip hop, rap, R&B and grime
  • The advent of the ‘teenager’
  • Drug culture
  • Reality TV

In Year 2 you’ll deepen your knowledge of the financial, legal and business side of the music industry. You’ll explore music publishing and sync, and will recognise the role played by a music supervisor. Study of entrepreneurship and innovation continues, and you’ll explore ideas and techniques to scope early-stage ventures. You’ll plan, organise, deliver, promote and monetise your own live events, and undertake digital promotional strategies, photo and video editing, and business pitches with support from digital distributor, The Orchard.

ENTREPRENEURSHIP AND INNOVATION

If you’re keen to develop an understanding of what entrepreneurship can do for individuals, enterprises or communities, this module draws from a wide range of disciplines – including behavioural sciences, economics, communications, competitive strategy, finance and marketing – to give you that knowledge. You’ll be encouraged to develop an entrepreneurial mindset and will be inspired by ideas, techniques and skills which help you create and develop early-stage ventures, leading all the way to enterprise growth. By working in teams on complex, real-life business problems and challenges, you’ll learn to develop business plans, generate ideas, recognise innovation, secure funding and analyse your competitors.

  • Becoming an entrepreneur
  • How to write a business plan
  • Feasibility analysis
  • Successful business idea generation
  • How to secure venture financing and funding
  • Industry and competitor analysis
  • Strategies for firm growth
  • Understanding financial statements

MUSIC MANAGEMENT

This module covers the management of creativity in music and the mechanics of artist management from a legal, commercial and practical perspective. The evolving role the ‘music manager’ plays in artist management and talent development is explored, as is the purpose of the Music Managers Forum (MMF). You’ll investigate the critical functions of discovery, assessment and development of music talent while exploring the diverse needs and challenges of the creative individual. You’ll also learn to recognise the vital tension between managing the creative process and meeting commercial needs and targets – essentially, the critical marriage of ‘music’ and ‘business’.

  • The role of the music manager
  • Contractual obligations and business arrangements
  • The importance of artistic identity
  • Business psychology
  • Mental health challenges for creative individuals
  • Artist management practices
  • Innovative approaches to artist development
  • The Music Managers Forum (MMF)

MUSIC PUBLISHING AND SYNCHRONISATION

In this module, you’ll develop your knowledge of music law and copyright and will gain a comprehensive understanding of the business and mechanics of music publishing, including learning about royalties, collection societies, the registration of songs, revenue streams, types of publishing deals, co-writing and song splits, new business models, music supervision, and synchronisation licensing for film, TV, the internet and video games. You’ll also analyse the business practices of major and independent publishers, as well as self-published songwriters and performers, and will examine how the future of the music publishing sector is being shaped by technology and consumer trends.

  • The business and mechanics of music publishing
  • How songs generate royalties for copyright owners
  • The role of music collection societies
  • Music revenue streams
  • Types of music publishing deals
  • How to negotiate a publishing deal
  • How to register your songs with PRS
  • Self-publishing
  • Licensing and sync for film, TV and games
  • The future of music publishing

DIGITAL STORYTELLING

In this innovative module, you’ll analyse the impact of digital media technologies on consumers, creators, distributors, publishers, brands and platforms. You’ll develop a detailed understanding of digital storytelling and examine theories such as disruption, innovation, consumer behaviour, digital strategies and business models, social networking, and communication in the digital domain. For assessment, you’ll research a music industry issue of your choosing, before pitching your ideas to your tutor, writing a script, and creating a video blog (vlog) about it with help from a videographer and graphic designer. You’re then free to share your finished piece across your social media accounts.

  • The effect of digital on production and creation
  • Digital strategies
  • Digital business models
  • Social media and digital platforms
  • Disruption and innovation
  • Consumer behaviour
  • Big data
  • Digital analytics
  • Blockchain technology
  • Video editing
  • Vlogging

LIVE EVENT MANAGEMENT

Expanding on your live event knowledge from Year 1, this module offers you the opportunity to work in teams to plan, develop and deliver you own live music event. You’ll be encouraged to approach your events creatively while developing an awareness of the importance of branding and sponsorship, the possibilities of new income streams and the changing patterns of live music consumption. Methods of communication and convergence will be examined, including the importance of employing social media and online strategies to promote your event. You’ll also gain a solid understanding of live issues including health and safety, legislation and regulations.

  • Live event health and safety
  • Live industry legislation and regulations
  • Live event marketing and promotion
  • Facilities management
  • Live event budgeting and planning
  • Personnel management
  • Live event risk assessment
  • Event project management

In your final year, you’ll learn about contracts and intellectual property from specialist music and entertainment lawyers, MBA graduates and business mentors. As part of the Business Enterprise Project, you’ll run your own music business initiative and, with the help of a supervisor, pitch your ideas to NatWest as part of their Entrepreneur Accelerator service. You’ll also have the choice to explore either practical digital marketing and content creation or complete an industry internship while gaining credit for your degree.

BUSINESS ENTERPRISE PROJECT

As part of this truly unique module, you’ll build on your business and entrepreneurship experience from previous years and develop critical skills as you identify, research, plan, develop, brand, market, launch and manage an authentic music business initiative or charitable, publicly funded or social enterprise business project. You’ll work independently or as part of a small multi-discipline team to simulate a real-world initiative and execute a substantial project within both time and budgetary constraints. With the help of a supervisor, you’ll have the opportunity to pitch your ideas to NatWest as part of their Entrepreneur Accelerator service.

  • How to launch a new business
  • How to set up a social enterprise
  • Project management
  • Market research
  • Financial planning
  • Supervisor interaction
  • Project update presentations

CRITICAL ISSUES IN MANAGEMENT

With an emphasis on interactive, problem-based and inclusive learning, this module – tailored to reflect your background, aspirations and interests – will provide you with a coherent and detailed knowledge of theories, models, ambiguities and challenges in management – all in the context of the creative industries. You’ll investigate a range of contemporary issues in the management of organisations, and will develop techniques for devising solutions to situations faced by modern groups and businesses. You’ll also gain an awareness of the macro, meso and micro situational factors that can affect the effectiveness of managers and their organisations.

  • The history of management
  • Management in the creative industries
  • Macro, meso and micro management
  • Successful problem-solving techniques
  • Positive and negative organisational culture
  • Managing diversity
  • Ethics and social responsibility
  • Fostering creativity and innovation in management
  • Managing organisational knowledge
  • Organisational change management

MUSIC AND ENTERTAINMENT LAW

Building on previous learning, in this module you’ll consolidate your understanding of contract and intellectual property law and their application in the music and entertainment industries. You’ll explore copyright and intellectual property (IP) rights by examining precedents, landmark cases and the main statutes in England and Wales which deal with IP. This knowledge will stand you in good stead in your future career to negotiate music recording, publishing and artist management agreements. You’ll also learn how to arrange contracts for evolving business models, such as sponsorship, endorsement, merchandising, multiple rights, and film and television sync deals.

  • Contract law and intellectual property
  • Music recording, publishing and artist management agreements
  • Multiple rights 360- and 270-degree deals
  • Film and TV sync deals
  • Live performance agreements
  • Sponsorship and endorsement
  • Statute and case law in copyright and IP

STRATEGIC MANAGEMENT

Studying this module will see you gain an appreciation of strategic management for creating and sustaining organisational effectiveness. You’ll explore theoretical perspectives on strategy development and methods of achieving competitive advantage in business, both nationally and globally. You’ll develop a range of techniques for evaluating the strategic capabilities of organisations and their operating environments, and will be able to devise recommendations to strategic problems faced by organisations, with a specific focus on the creative sector. Your comprehensive examination of strategic capabilities and the environmental context of organisations will ensure you make sound strategic decisions about real-life management challenges.

  • Theoretical perspectives on strategy development
  • Components of an organisation’s strategic purpose
  • Strategic choices and positioning in different environments
  • Critical evaluation of strategic capabilities
  • Business-level strategy
  • Competitive advantage theories
  • Corporate strategy vs business strategy
  • Drivers of internationalism

ADVANCED DIGITAL MARKETING (OPTIONAL)

In this pioneering module, you’ll explore a range of advanced hands-on digital marketing practices with the goal of enhancing your digital marketing effectiveness. Building on your marketing studies from previous years, you’ll explore in-depth content development and social media strategies to conduct high-quality digital marketing campaigns and create a brand from scratch. You’ll gain the creative and technical skills to deliver and manage regular digital content – whether to business to business or business to consumer audiences – while gaining a strong understanding of how search engine optimisation and advertising tactics can help you grow your brand.

  • Creating and sharing content
  • Social media management
  • Digital advertising
  • Website development
  • Growth hacking
  • Copywriting
  • Google Analytics
  • Search engine optimisation strategies

INDUSTRY EXPERIENCE (OPTIONAL)

Enhance your academic learning with a period of work experience in the music and creative industries with this optional module. You’ll gain a host of practical skills working within a professional environment relevant to your area of interest, and will develop your employability and transferable skills through the practical application of theoretical knowledge learned during your studies. You’ll receive CV, interview and careers support from ICMP’s The Hub in the researching and preparation of your work placement application, but will be expected to identify, apply for and secure the work placement independently, and evaluate your experience in a report.

  • Preparing for employment
  • Tailored careers advice and support
  • How to write your CV
  • Applying for a work placement
  • Job interview techniques
  • Work experience in the creative industries

TEACHING, LEARNING AND ASSESSMENT

You will be taught at our campus in Kilburn, utilising our live rooms, tech suites and in-house music studio facilities as well as classrooms and lecture rooms. You will have access to use these facilities outside of class time while you are a student at ICMP in order to rehearse and record your music. 

You will be taught through a variety of teaching and learning methods including lectures, small group tutorials, performance workshops, music technology workshops tutorials and one to one instrumental tuition. 

You will have access to the Student Services Department for support and advice concerning welfare, finance, personal development, safeguarding etc. You'll also have access to our Professional Development team ‘The Hub, who provide bespoke music industry careers advice and access to unique industry opportunities.

As a student of UEL you will also enjoy access to a range of UEL facilities, including the 24/7 multimedia libraries, with over 300,000 books, journals, audio-visual resources and archives, 500 electronic books and 25,000 electronic journals and databases. 

Teaching and Learning

On the BA (Hons) Music Business and Entrepreneurship programme you will be taught through a variety of teaching and learning methods including lectures, small tutorial groups, workshops, hands-on technology laboratory tutorials, group work and student-led classes/presentations.

When not attending lectures, seminars or other timetabled sessions you'll be expected to continue learning independently through self-study. Typically, this will involve reading articles and books, working on individual and group projects, undertaking research in the library, and preparing coursework assignments.Your independent learning is supported by a range of excellent facilities, including our Learning Resource Centre, our many performance and practice rooms, and well-equipped tech suites.

Throughout the duration of your course your time will be split as follows:

Teaching hours per week
Semester A • Year 1: 9hrs | Year 2: 9hrs | Year 3: 9hrs
Semester B • Year 1: 9hrs | Year 2:  9hrs  | Year 3: 9hrs

Total Teaching, Learning and Assessment hours per year
Year 1: 216hrs | Year 2: 216hrs | Year 3: 216hrs

Total self-study hours per year
Year 1: 984hrs | Year 2: 984hrs | Year 3: 984hrs

Assessment

Assessment activities will include, but not be limited to, student presentations, portfolios, individual and group projects, case studies, written examination papers, aural examinations, coursework, group problem solving, reflective journals, self and peer assessments.

The assessment breakdown of this programme is:

Year 1: 5% Written | 95% Coursework
Year 2: 12% Written | 88% Coursework
Year 3:12% Written | 88% Coursework

ENTRY REQUIREMENTS

Applicants will typically have A Levels, BTEC Diploma or Extended Diploma, or International Baccalaureate equivalent to 80 UCAS points, or an ICMP Higher Diploma.

In addition, you should hold a GCSE Grade C or 4 or above in English  and Maths, or suitable equivalent, such as Level 2 Key Skills, Functional Skills or Adult Literacy/Numeracy.

We also welcome applications from mature applicants who may have no formal qualifications but can demonstrate their suitability for study through appropriate skills and experience.

International students will typically hold a relevant equivalent qualification – please check your qualification with our Admissions Team. In addition, you should hold a relevant English language qualification equivalent to CEFR Level B2.

All applicants will be invited to attend an interview.

This course is also available as a one-year Cert HE option.

UCAS code BAEMUni code i25

HOW TO APPLY

 Please apply via  the "APPLY NOW" link  below.

At any time during the application process if you need help or further advice just contact our Admissions team who will be happy to assist you. 



By phone:
020 7328 0222

By email:
enquiries@icmp.ac.uk

or

Tutors

Ken ForemanMusic Business

Ken has made records for labels including Elektra Entertainments, East/West Warners, Chrysalis, Sony, Palm Pictures, RTI/S4, Toshiba/EMI, and Almo. There followed a number of years, managed by Pan-American Ad agency, Amber Music Ltd, composing music for commercials. His compositions featured in many US and European campaigns, including Adidas, Bass, Vauxhall, Tennants, Benetton, Foxes, Titleist, Bell Atlantic, and 7 Up.
ken-foreman

Stephen MixMusic Business

Stephen Mix’s early career was in business start-ups. He obtained an MBA at Imperial College before joining Hamilton Bradshaw, James Caan’s investment firm, in 2009 as an Investment Manager. Today, Stephen manages a number of high performing staffing businesses including Exsurgo, DRC Locums, and HB Retinue. He provides strong business expertise from marketing and strategy to financial and operation control. He is also very involved in identifying senior talent and investment opportunities for his portfolio companies.
Stephen Mix | Music Business Tutor | ICMP London

Korda MarshallMusic Business

During his time at Warner, Korda became Managing Director of the company’s Atlantic Records label, where he signed The Darkness and James Blunt among others, before taking over at Warner Music in 2004 and overseeing the careers of Madonna, Green Day, The Red Hot Chilli Peppers, and signing artists including Gnarls Barkley, The Foals, The Enemy, Pendulum, and Seasick Steve.
Korda Marshall | Music Business Tutor | ICMP London

Nigel Dewar GibbMusic Business

Nigel is a commercial lawyer with intellectual property (IP) expertise, specialising in media, entertainment, and technology. He has worked for major record companies including London Records and Virgin as well as for their affiliated music publishing companies. He also worked for Picture Music International, a division of EMI Records and was involved in TV and video production.
Nigel Dewar Gibb | Music Business Tutor | ICMP London