Berklee Blogs checks in with Kate Fogler, an 8th semester Music Business/Management major interning at live-music event discovery startup, frestyl. In today’s blog, Kate tells us about some of the responsibilities that come along with working in a music technology startup.
Hallo aus Berlin, Deutschland! Hello from Berlin, Germany!
I am interning at an all-women, live music event discovery startup working to connect live music event organizers directly with fans. As a fan, I can log into frestyl on my iPhone using Facebook or my personal email account to check out shows in Berlin and get ticket, drink, or merchandise specials exclusively for frestyl users. With a recent App update, I can now discover new shows based on personalized suggestions generated by frestyl scanning my iTunes and matching my unique taste to upcoming shows. When the suggestions have been made, I can listen to a few songs with the new built in music player linked to my Spotify Premium account and add it to my weekly planner. As an organizer (venue, booking agent, promoter, artist), I can upload my events, add specials, push the event to social media channels, and gain exposure with the app. Through the circulation, I gain access to valuable fan analytics and marketing tools that save me time and money.
As an internship experience, frestyl is incredible. Yes, I make a lot of spreadsheets and I have the mundane task of inputting events each week, but that is the extent of ‘intern’ work I do. Primarily partnering with the ‘sales’ wizard who is responsible for signing organizers, we strategize sales points for our business meetings. I also work with the social media team and branding team designing tag lines and campaigns, and I just started a project with our office manager in partnerships and sponsorship. A startup environment can be both frustrating and beautiful as we are constantly adapting to a changing market. Unlike the bigger companies, we don’t have set routines for campaigns and press releases—each step is an experiment.
How did I get here? A lot of work… I studied abroad my third semester in Freiburg, Germany and fell in love with the country. It became my mission to return after graduation, so in the meantime I studied hard, interned around Boston, booked shows at local venues, and worked as a nanny in what little free time I had to finance my various trips abroad. When it came time to do a credited internship for graduation, I set my focus on Berlin. It turns out internships in the music industry in Germany without fluency in German language weren’t easy to find. After weeks of searching, I stumbled upon frestyl and it seemed like the perfect fit. But the battle had only just began, I took several weeks and dozens of trips to my Business Communication teacher, Stephanie Kellar’s office to perfect my CV, cover letter and gather my list of references for submission. From there, I hounded my now supervisor, sending email after email until we finally secured a Skype interview. Now here I sit, in the frestyl office, happy to share my experience.
Kate Fogler is an eighth semester student at Berklee College of Music, majoring in Music Business/Management and her principle instrument is trombone. In the summer of 2013, Kate founded a promotion company in Boston, organizing shows for fellow Berklee students at local venues. She is now in Berlin, Germany, completing an internship at an all-women startup in the field of live music event discovery.
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