How to become a festival PR director: Jess' story

Meet Jess and learn about her role as the PR director for Bluedot Festival. Part of our Bitesize world of work series.

I didn't have the experience... so I had to be proactive. I've worked my way up from being an intern and now I'm a director.

  • Jess works as an account director for the PR company Carousel PR. At festivals like Bluedot, she runs the press office, managing all the members of the press that are attending the event

  • At festivals, Jess supplies press teams with a pre-agreed schedule of interviews with different artists and manages the "pit". This essentially is escorting the photographers to the front of the stage where they can take pictures of the headlining acts

  • Having started out with no experience or relevant qualifications, Jess has worked her way up to being a director. Whilst she has stayed in the same company, many other people in the field move around companies to gain a range of different experiences

  • After her GCSEs, Jess went to college and university but didn't study anything to do with PR or Music. What helped her most was the experience she gained planning social events at university

  • She credits being confident in approaching people, networking and attending different events with helping her make it in the industry. Getting out there and making connections can really help!

What to expect if you want to work in PR

Public relations (PR) directors manage communications, campaigns and strategy for their organisation or clients.

  • Public relations director salary: £40,000 to £80,000 per year
  • Public relations director working hours: 39 to 41 hours per week. You may work evenings, weekends and bank holidays
  • Typical entry requirements: You can get this role through a university course, graduate training scheme, or building up experience and applying directly. To become a PR director you need several years' experience at senior management level in PR, marketing or communications. You could do a degree or postgraduate qualification in Public Relations, Communications or Marketing before joining an agency. You'll usually need two to three A-levels (or equivalent) for a degree or a degree in a relevant subject for postgraduate study. Alternatively, you could join a public relations firm as a manager and, with experience, work your way up to become a company director.

This information is a guide (sources: LMI for All, National Careers Service)

For careers advice in all parts of the UK visit: England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales

Jasmine: production manager
Jobs at music festivals and in the music industry
Emma: Manchester Pride events assistant