When Andrew Bryant started college he knew he wanted to study business, but after a couple of years in a general business program at another university, he realized he wanted to be focusing more on the entertainment side of the industry. He transferred to Full Sail and enrolled in the Entertainment Business bachelor’s program.
“I knew I was interested in business, but at the time I wasn’t exactly sure if I wanted to work in music, sports, or television,” remembers Andrew. “In the Entertainment Business program, I felt like I got to taste a little bit of everything.”
After graduating in 2011, the Florida born and raised Andrew decided to make the move up to New York City, knowing there’d be more opportunity there. He landed an internship at Madison Square Garden, and a couple of months after the semester-long gig was over, Andrew became the subject of the classic intern success story: He got a call from MSG asking him if he’d be interested in a full-time position in the web department.
“When I was an intern, there were four other interns in my department,” says Andrew. “When anyone needed anything, I’d volunteer. You have to step up or ask around to stand out, you can’t just sit there and wait for somebody to task you with something. Then, someone will find something for you to do and they’ll appreciate it and remember that.”
Andrew spent a couple of years working for Madison Square Garden and its other properties (Radio City Music Hall, the Beacon Theater, and more), first as a web programmer, managing all of the content that was uploaded to the company’s websites, and later as a coordinator for website media and content for MSG’s entertainment division. Andrew worked with other departments to gather their content for the websites, and began creating some of the content himself. Essentially, anything that made it onto one of Madison Square Garden’s websites made its way through Andrew first.
Earlier this year, ready for a change (and realizing that he was becoming more and more interested in the music side of things at MSG), Andrew took a job as a Digital Project Manager at Universal Music Group. He works in the company’s Shared Services group, which he describes as almost a boutique creative agency within Universal.
“My department works with multiple labels within UMG – Def Jam, Republic, and Island,” says Andrew. “Any digital needs those labels have, they come to us. As a whole, my department designs and develops websites, social pages, and any type of new digital experience for the artist. We build online and mobile fan communities and continuously try to evolve the way that fans listen to, participate in, and buy music.”
As project manager, Andrew oversees a project from conception to creation. This includes meeting directly with artists and managers to outline their digital needs, and then managing every step of the project as it makes its way through developers and designers, then back to the Digital Marketing Manager for final approval. Andrew is constantly juggling multiple projects at once; in just a couple of months on the job, he’s already worked on campaigns for Ariana Grande, Austin Mahone, Nicki Minaj, Lil Wayne, and more.
“Working on the artist side of things gives me the ability to have more creative input and freedom,” says Andrew. “Full Sail helped me learn to collaborate. That bond with my classmates helped me get comfortable and the ideas started flowing more often. [At UMG], I work closely with digital marketers, and they’re still looking to me for those ideas.”