Successful Berklee Alumni #51: Adam Kirschner

Adam Kirschner

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Listen to the interview (approx. 45 min.), or download it.

 

Graduated in 2013 with a major in Music Business.  Principal Instrument:  drums.

Position:  Senior Account Manager (Business-to-Business Sales) at StitcherAds.  StitcherAds is a software that helps companies market their products on Facebook.  Working for a combination of salary and commission, Adam brings in new business by cultivating relationships with new clients and working with both companies and advertising firms to build campaigns.  He speaks with clients, talks to Facebook reps, looks over contracts, puts together “execution strategies” to optimize company websites to work with their tools.  “It’a new, exciting field.  No two days are the same.”

 

Overview:  While at Berklee, Adam did several internships, including at a music publishing company in New York City.  That company hired him as an office manager, but, per Adam’s own admission, he wasn’t very good at it, as he was very interested in music publishing but not in the minutiae of running an office, so after three months he was let go.  Tending bar part-time, he looked first for music industry jobs, but after a month he was feeling the financial pressure to get a job, so broadened his search.  He found a tech sales company Single Platform, cold calling small businesses to sell their $79 software.  “Sales is tough, but they’ll take college grads with no experience.”

Seven months later, Adam moved to Austin, Texas to be with his girlfriend, figuring correctly that Austin’s burgeoning tech sector down there would make a mob search pretty easy.  Within a month he was working for Memory Blue, which did cold-call software sales for other companies on demand.  After a few months, he was working on behalf of StitcherAds, and he did a good enough job for a couple of months that StitcherAds decided to take him on as their own employee in January, 2015.

 

You can see Adam’s LinkedIn Profile here.

 

Choice Quotes:   “I’m on the leading edge of an exciting space, such as digital advertising.  Every day new information comes out, new types of ads, new clients.  It’s totally different now from even a year ago.  It’s a fast-moving industry and we’re always on the edge of our seat!”

“A large spectrum of personality types can succeed in sales.  I’m very outgoing, but I’ve seen more quiet, reserved folks do just as well.”

“It’s really nice to be able to make my living, pay the bills, save some cash, and at the same time I can playing all the music I want without having to worry about music making me enough money.”

 

See the full index of Successful Berklee Grads.

 

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Adam as a Berklee student.  “One really useful thing that my Berklee experience taught me was how to improvise well.  It’s like when you’re suddenly asked to do a drum solo.  Many times I’m on a sales call and I’m asked if the software can do something different from normal.  I have to come up with an answer FAST by improvising on the spot.

 

Adam tells other Berklee folks thinking about their careers, “Don’t shut any door.  If there’s an opportunity that you’re at least considering, take it and see where it takes you.  If they ask you do so something you’ve never done, tell them you can do it and then figure out how to do it.”

 

 

 

img_1738-rotated-againAdam is very happy with his life in Austin.  “Austin is a great place to be a musician.  There not much industry presence, but lots of folks play and there’s a robust local live music scene.”  Adam is in an 80s/90s cover band that does a good number of bar gigs and private events.”

“I’m tied up during the day Monday-Friday, but nights and weekends I can choose what I want to do: play gigs, jam with friends, learn my banjo, go to concerts, watch a UT football game.  The world is my oyster!  I was devastated when I lost my music industry job and wondered if that was the end of my music life.  But then I started to look at other avenues and ultimately it worked out very well.”

 

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