Musical Arts Merchandise Management Career Info

Mar 04, 2019

Learn about a career in musical arts merchandise management and find out what kind of preparation is required. Get the job prospects and earning potential for this field to see if it's right for you.

Career Definition for a Musical Arts Merchandise Manager

The professional music industry is so much more than creating and performing songs; albums, posters, and clothing all play a large role in an artist's financial success. Musical arts merchandisers manage music stores or departments, helping to design items such as t-shirts and posters. They might also book concert venues and promote albums to distributors and stores. Since music venues and stores are found throughout the country, there can be opportunities in any location; however, most important promotional and artistic decisions in the music industry happen in the country's music capitals, such as New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Las Vegas, and Nashville.

Education Associate or bachelor's degrees in music merchandising and music available
Job Skills Marketing, customer service, management, economics
Median Salary (2017) $115,760 for purchasing managers
Job Growth (2016-2026) 5% for purchasing managers

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Required Education

Many colleges and universities now offer an associate's degree in music merchandising, a Bachelor of Science in Music (with a concentration in merchandising), a Bachelor of Music Merchandising, a Bachelor of Science in Music Merchandising or a Bachelor of Arts in Music Merchandising. Most programs in musical arts merchandising take four years, but some degree programs may also require an internship or co-op, adding to the time needed to graduate. Some programs may require students to take some music classes in addition to their courses in marketing, finance, economics, management, and accounting.

Skills Required

Musical arts merchandisers need to have a solid understanding of marketing, because the main goal of the profession is to sell music-related products to customers. Solid communication skills, particularly related to customer service, are a must. In addition, fundamental knowledge about the basics of business, management, finance, and economics will also benefit a prospective musical arts merchandiser.

Career and Economic Outlook

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported there were approximately 73,900 positions in existence nationwide for purchasing managers of all kinds in May 2017, and music arts merchandisers are just a sliver of that number. Nevertheless, with business training and a passion for the world of music, professionals can carve out a niche in a musical arts merchandising career. Purchasing managers earned a median annual salary of $115,760 as of May 2017, per the BLS.

Alternate Career Options

You might consider these other options in the field of management:


A logistician works to keep all the process of moving items - such as concert posters - from one place to another running smoothly, including working with vendors, warehouses, and shippers, among others. They analyze supply chain data to see where changes can be made to improve costs and efficiency. Many are employed by the federal government or manufacturing companies. Entry-level employment is possible with an associate's degree; career advancement typically requires a bachelor's degree or greater. Voluntary professional certification is also available. The median pay for logisticians was $74,590 in 2017, and they could expect job growth of 7% from 2016-2026, per the BLS.

Promotions Managers

Promotions managers develop and implement programs that persuade customers to make special purchases by offering samples, contests, or other kinds of motivators. Promotions managers usually have at least a bachelor's degree and completed coursework in marketing, sales, communications, and art. Jobs for advertising and promotions managers are expected to increase 5% from 2016-2026, according to the BLS, while those working in the field in 2017 earned median pay of $106,130.

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