There is something crucial that most of you are missing…
In the age of social media, we are all focusing on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook and, we’ve forgotten an important basic: Your press kit – the asset that makes it easy for others to publicize your brand.
In many ways, your online presence is equivalent to creating your own online billboard. If you are in control of your website and your social channels, and you have a good grasp of 2-way conversation mastery, your online billboard will have the exact messaging for your tribe (potential customers and fans).
However, if this is not the case, here are some predictable scenarios:
You are featured on a blog or at a show with a random or an outdated photo of you that someone randomly Googled
You are introduced by someone who is summarizing from old info or a badly edited Wikipedia page that focuses on all of the wrong things. (I’ve seen this happen multiple times – not a good look!)
Your photo is so small it comes out fuzzy on posters and online
You want all assets to be as much in your control as possible that you always have your best foot forward and you are sharing the latest news, release, and images.
Follow this guide to ensure that you are in control of your brand and your image.
5 Elements to Include For A Perfect Press Kit
Editors, bloggers, bookers and even potential fans will deeply appreciate having seamless access to your information because they are constantly under deadline.
Here are the four assets to include:
1. Your Bio (Signature Story)
This is the cornerstone of your brand and the most important part of your image aside from your music. Make sure your bio is easily locatable on your site and it can be easily cut-and-pasted (not in a PDF format that can’t be easily cut and pasted).
Your bio should NOT just be a “who, what, when, where, why” or a list of accolades. Read our handy guide Five Steps To A Kick-Ass Artist Bio here or Invest in having a bio written that brings out your signature story.
This should be a compelling and relatable story that evokes an emotional response from the reader. A memorable signature story contains a memorable narrative “nugget” in a longer form than a pitch is also key when creating a foundation for your brand.
Post a long form, 250 word, 100 word and a tweet-sized bio and you have pre-delivered every possible type of bio request that may come your way (no one will ever ask you to edit your bio down again or worse, edit it for you and forget the most important parts.
If you want to deep dive into how to craft the perfect Artist Bio click below to watch our Webinar
Next, Create 6 Versions of Your Artist Bio
In 250 – 200 words
In 100 words
In 1 tweet
A few words (and maybe even an emoji) for Instagram, Twitter & socials
A graphic representation for Instagram posts and Stories
2. Your Photos, Album Art & Logos – Make Them Easy to Find and Download
All of your artwork should be up to date and available for easy download. Include album art, single art and several sizes of images.
Studies have shown that photos of people looking at the camera test well with audiences. I recommend investing in a professional photo shoot with some of your favorite outfits you like to wear on stage that truly reflect your brand so that when visitors come to your site and socials, they will have a good idea of what you will look like live.
Thumbnails are great for quick and easy loading but are detrimental for use in print (your photo may be appearing on posters, flyers, conference guides etc.)
You should always have a few downloadable photo options on your site in at least 300 dpi/jpg format. Also, post vertical and horizontal photos and remember SQUARE is the norm now (think like Instagram) so have photos that are different ratios including square and Instagram Story size so editors working on tight deadlines won’t have to resize anything.
TIP: Create an easy-to-see link that says “click here for a hi-res / low res jpg.” That way, busy editors can get what they need easily. When the photos are downloaded, make sure they are properly named with YOUR NAME (not 3456790298376542.jpg) so that editors can find them in folders and on messy desktops and this will help with your SEO as well!
TIP: Include Your Album / EP / Single Covers and Logo if you have one.
3. Include Press Clips & Reviews
What you say about you is one thing… However, what others say about you is trusted in a different way. So, if you have press or blog posts, pieces you were quoted in, or raving testimonials from fans, include them.
TIP: Don’t link out to other blogs and sites (the sites you are linking to may take them down or go dead, so make sure you include the articles archived on your own site).
No PR? That’s OK! Use reviews to from fans. If you don’t have any, send an email, Instagram Message or a Facebook Message to a few superfans and ask them to post a single review on iTunes, SoundCloud, or Amazon and use those.
4. Your Upcoming Shows
If you are playing shows you not only need a section on your site that is clearly marked but you also these two VITAL live show tools
Bandsintown: Integrates with Facebook and alerts your fans when you are playing. For added promotion, Bandsintown offers “Bandsintown Promoters”, an affordable way to promote shows to people who are more inclined to be live music fans.
Songkick: You should update your Songkick account on a regular basis to ensure that all of your shows are added as soon as they are released. Songkick feeds tour dates to Spotify and other services, so it is very important to keep it updated.
5. Keep In Mind You Don’t Need to Hire Someone to Update Your Site or Press Kit
If you can’t easily modify your website to include all of this information, you can easily set up an about.me page or you can use a platform like PressKit.to or ArtistCard. and include the 5 assets listed here.
For a refresher on what to add to your website read our Musician’s Guide.
Here’s to protecting what you want to say and show about your brand online.