Public Relations/advice on how to build connections with journalists
I am going to be taking on the role of a publicist for a friend who is a musician in LA. He works at a wonderful studio owned by a famous artist sons and they are very wealthy and the facility is great. There is no PR department currently working at the studio or publicists and I am putting together a team to generate exposure. I have some education in Public Relations but I am aware this is going to be a huge task because we have not been given much of a budget to work with. Do you think if I hold an event/party at the studio and invite the media to attend would be a good idea. We would have the artist I am working with as well as some of the other talent play at the party. I am also thinking about making it a charity event. Getting some celebs there would be no problem , but the studio lacks connections with journalists. Would the party and invitation to journalists be a good idea?
From your question, it appears your promotion will be for your friend the musician, and also the studio. An event/party at the studio is a great idea to promote the studio and feature musicians to local journalists. You may consider taking some time to outline a public relations plan that includes not only the event, but also an announcement press release (to regional and national media), followed by a post event release with photos and quotes with short video promos (think news story clip) you can post online.
Your idea to make it a charity event would make it more appealing to the general civic-minded public, but may do more to attract journalists who report more on community events- is that your goal? Or, are you more interested in music/entertainment writers. Hosting celebrities at the event could work well to draw in entertainment reporters, but you should evaluate if the celebrities are a good fit with the studio. You wouldn't want the reporter and photographer interest to cause a "celebrity circus" and no one reports on the studio or the musicians.
Since this is PR in the music industry, you have tremendous opportunities online to reach reporters who are interested in the music style of your musician and who are interested in new venues/studies where musicians are collaborating. You mentioned ownership by "famous artist sons" so there is potential to build outreach from unique elements like these. Without knowing the style of music your friend creates, it's hard to go into more specifics - but look to the genre of music (jazz, new age, etc. - google media outlets and send a general announcement press release as part of your plan in generating exposure for the studio and your friend.
I wish you much success in your endeavor. I encourage you to develop your own "Top 10" list for local media and a "Top 10" list for national media. Go ahead and write down those local and national reporters and/or media outlets you are most interested in seeing a story develop for your friend and the studio. I assure you, if you give yourself time and continue to communicate with your media targets, build relationships and share your passion for your friend's music and and the studio - you will generate exposure.
Best of luck to you.