What We Do

As the organisation tasked with representing and developing Scotland’s music industry, the SMIA delivers a wide range of services, projects and events.


Through Creative Scotland funding, the SMIA run 12 workshops each year in different locations across Scotland on a wide range of music industry topics. Workshops are lead by specialist trainers contracted by the SMIA, with the topics chosen based upon findings from our research into skills gaps and learning needs in Scotland’s music industry, which was conducted in 2017. Workshops to date have included: Social Media Marketing and Digital Engagement, Crowdfunding, Partnerships and Working With Brands, Running Your Music Business More Efficiently, Creating Engaging Online Content for Music Projects and Music PR on a Budget.

All SMIA workshops are filmed, with videos available to access at any time if you’re a member of the SMIA.


From Summer 2019 we will launch a series of mid-level masterclasses to deliver intensive training. Each masterclass will accommodate up to 15 people and will be run over one or two days in Glasgow or Edinburgh, delivered by relevant experts.

Topics will be demand-lead but are likely to include artist management, publishing and IP, running a record label, live promotion and monetising music media. Core Members of the SMIA will be entitled to discounted places at SMIA Masterclasses.


In partnership with academic institutions we conduct a wide range of research projects. Fields of study include re-mapping the economic music map of Scotland, equality, diversity and inclusion within Scotland’s music industry, assessing the potential for music tourism and identifying overseas trade opportunities.

Our research projects give us market intelligence which we use to inform our projects. We also share findings with our members to give them insight into the industry.


There is an ever expanding catalogue of information and training resources in the members’ area of the SMIA website. These resources include:

  • Video and/or audio recordings of SMIA (and SMIA-affiliated) events, such as conference talks, panel discussions, our “Creative Conversations” interview series, and our training workshops
  • Toolkits and how-to guides
  • A curated collection of publicly available industry information collated from materials produced by organisations including UK Music, PPL, PRS for Music, PRS Foundation, Help Musicians UK, AIM, Merlin, the Musicians Union, BECTU and Generator and public agencies including Creative Scotland, Skills Development Scotland, Scottish Enterprise and Highlands and Islands Enterprise


The SMIA polls its members on a regular basis to gage opinion. In response to requests from our membership we will make representations to the Scottish and UK governments, as well as local councils when relevant.

The SMIA is part of several government and public agency fora, including Fiona Hyslop’s Creative Industries Advisory Group and Culture and Tourism EU Referendum Stakeholder’s group, the Cross Party Group for Music, Skills Development Scotland’s Creative Industries Sector Skills Advisory Group and their Creative Leadership Programme.


The SMIA provides bespoke strategic planning support for Core Members (including a matchmaking service to find partners for projects). We also run the Music Business Innovation (MBI) Programme; a high-level training programme to which music businesses based in Scotland may apply.

Successful applicants meet with a team of creative business consultants who benchmark where the company is at and then workshop a plan for pivoting its business model to take advantage of new opportunities. Each business is then offered some ongoing support as they put the plan into action. After six months they meet with the consultants again to discuss progress and present the outcomes at an event. Non-confidential data, learnings and business model templates will be made publicly available through the resources section of the SMIA website.

Scottish Album of the Year (SAY) Award

Since its inauguration in 2012, the Scottish Album of the Year (SAY) Award has grown to become Scotland’s most popular and prestigious music prize. As the SMIA’s flagship project and wielding one of the UK’s most lucrative prize funds, The SAY Award champions the extraordinary strength and diversity of Scotland’s musical landscape.

With previous Longlist titles featuring hip-hop, rock, alternative, traditional, folk, classical, dubstep, reggae, pop and jazz, The SAY Award accommodates Scottish music in all its influential, inspiring and idiosyncratic glory: from mainstream platinum sellers to self-released left-field outriders, The SAY Award has illuminated Scotland’s music scene with the ambition, credibility and commitment our artists’ endeavours so richly deserve.

Learn more about The SAY Award at sayaward.com


Our membership always values networking opportunities. We run members-only meetups at SMIA events like our Summer Social, Christmas Social, AGM and the Scottish Album of the Year (SAY) Award ceremony. We publish details of our networking events in our monthly members’ newsletter.

Online networking is facilitated through our social channels. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Partner Events

Collaboration is a cornerstone of the SMIA’s ethos. To enable more effective and meaningful coverage of Scotland, the SMIA teams up with complementary organisations to deliver workshops, seminars, lectures and consultations.

We have presence at, are are actively involved in, events including Wide Days in Edinburgh, XpoNorth in Inverness and Resonate in Glasgow.