November Member Spotlight: Strut Entertainment
Strut Entertainment was built from the ground up in Toronto without any pretensions other than being dedicated to sharing great music. Although President Samantha Pickard got her start in business before even completing high school, her knowledge and passion about everything to do with music has ensured the company’s rising profile over the last 10 years.
Strut’s focus is based on a gap in the music market that Pickard first identified a decade ago. She ran a trade music magazine for five years and noticed high demand from artists and managers that wanted her to do publicity and events. Having worked with independent music/entertainment publicity companies, Pickard saw an opportunity to improve on the services such companies were offering while the market was still small.
“I had the benefit of getting the best and worst service from all of them,” says Pickard. “That really helped me hone what services I would create for Strut and what we would offer to our publicity clients… and what not to offer!”
Pickard is heavily influenced by her parents. She admires their work ethic, ambition and longtime support for her entrepreneurial dreams. In terms industry influences, she has also cultivated important relationships with John Woodruff (JWM productions, Savage Garden) and Keith Welsh (The Music Network Magazine, Rough Cut Music Publishing) in Australia, as well as Donald Tarlton (Aquarius Records, DKD Events) here in Canada. She additionally values her relationships with Deane Cameron (Massey Hall) and Randy Lennox (Bell Media) and believes strong industry relationships and partnerships are a key strength of any business.
“By working music, entertainment and lifestyle brand campaigns we are able to offer a media network that is vast across all media beats, not just music”, says Pickard. To date, Strut maintains ties with a wide variety of agents, labels, managers, distributors, radio promoters, as well as marketing and retail professionals.
In the current, rapidly-changing technological climate of the music industry, Strut promises to help their artists adapt to new ways of doing business – to be part of the solution, not part of the problem. Pickard describes the mission of the company for 2016 and beyond: “our goal is always to amplify the noise around the campaigns we work on and to help elevate the profile of our baby bands and our established artists”.
As a business, Strut defines itself as a passionate company. The team is composed – above all – of music fans with eclectic backgrounds and a true love for communications and the arts. Pickard has fostered qualities in the business that set it apart from its competitors, including an ability to think outside the box and develop meaningful connections between clients and people who can advance their careers. Her staff members will seize the chance to work hard on any task, regardless of whether it is part of their job description. Pickard consequently sums up the work culture at Strut as being “hilarious, passionate and hardworking”.
Projects underway at Strut include the launch of Strut Social – an umbrella platform for its event activations, along with client activations and promotions. More information on Strut Social will be announced over the next six months. Further Strut initiatives include a publicity campaign for The Dead South, the latest album by The Trews and the release of the new Neon Dreams EP. Strut are also proud to continue their work with the Canadian music education charity, MusiCounts.
Stay tuned for all these upcoming campaigns by following them on social media:
- Website: www.strutentertainment.com
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/StrutEntertainment/
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/strutent
- Instagram: @strutent