Date of Award


Document Type

Master Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts


Media Communications

First Advisor

Emmett Coffey


Significance of the study: Independent musicians are a huge part of the Irish music industry and yet they are the part that do not have the backing of a record label. This means independent musicians need to look at cheap or even free ways to promote themselves to existing fans and potential new fans. With the emergence of social networks musicians both signed and independent have the tools necessary to engage in a new form DIY PR. The purpose of this study is to look at the different ways that social networks have helped musicians in recent years, but also to see what the musicians and their fans really think of these new changes.

Approach: The approach that has been taken with this study was done in two parts. The first part involved a detailed literature review which is based on secondary research undertaken by the researcher. The second part of this study is done using a number of qualitative research methods. These included interviews with both musicians and public relations professionals and a focus group, which consisted of music fans. This would give the researcher a greater insight into the views that all parties questioned have on the subject of using social networks as a public relations tool. A semi-structured interview was used to gather the information required from the musicians and the public relations professional.

Results: This study revealed to the researcher that each person who was questioned had a different view on the importance and effectiveness of using social media as a public relations tool. To the musicians social networks are a great way of them to engage in free public relations. Music fans felt that using public relations, while effective, could on occasion be used in the wrong way. The public relation professionals had their own opinions on the effectiveness of using social networks. This opinion backed up the views of the musicians questioned.


MA in Public Relations with New Media, Cork Institute of Technology, 2012

Access Level