Having an informative and professional promo package (commonly known as an Electronic Press Kit or ‘EPK’) can be the thing that sets you apart from other bands and artists, whether you’re approaching record labels/management, promoting your own music releases, trying to get a gig, or if you’re an indie record label trying to drum up some interest in your bands.
Choosing the Music
The point of your EPK is to get your music heard, so choosing the music to include in the package requires some thought. Whether you’re trying to get the attention of a label, an agent, the press or radio stations, remember that these people receive A LOT of music every day. They can’t possibly sit down and listen to every album from start to finish. Make a short demo CD or USB with your best two or three songs or QR code to your website/social media.
Quality over quantity is the best approach – and preferably using tracks that have strong beginnings, so they capture the listener before they can push “next.”
Write the Bio
Your promo package should include a short artist bio at the beginning, and a long artist bio further in. The people who do decide to work with you on the basis of your package are going to need some useful information about you and your music. A useful structure to utilise could be:
- where is your band located,
- Your band’s experience,
- Your inspiration for the band, and
- What is your sound (or even artist you sound like/draw inspiration from)
The short bio should be succinct and to the point – ask yourself “what is my goals?” Read some great examples HERE.
Write a Press Release
If you’re releasing music, sending a demo to potential management/labels, or trying to get a gig, sending a Press Release throughout your creative network is a great way to get people looking at your EPK. This can meet the above goals, or potentially drum up promotion for your act (eg: being published in an article or gig guide).
You may not have a specific event to promote that requires a press release, however if you’re trying to promote a new album or a tour, your promo package should include a press release detailing the specifics of the thing you are trying to promote. The same rules that apply to band bios apply to press releases—keep it short and include useful information, avoiding the “fluff” that may be scrolled past or skipped.
Remember, the point is for someone to read that press release and use it to write something about your band.
If you’re sending your promo package to magazine, website, or newspaper, make sure to include a high quality photo (also referred to as a “Press Shot”) in your package. Digital, hard copy of the photo or a USB with a photo file will work equally well – it al depends on how you’re sharing/engaging.
The media is much more likely to run a photo if they don’t have to chase it down, so including one in your package dramatically increases the chance they will actually run a photo.You should always send a colour photo because many publications demand colour photos, and the others can always print the color photo in black and white. Be sure to include the photo credit information (who your photographer is).
The Personal Touch
Adding a short, personal note to each EPK is a nice touch, especially if the EPK is going to someone you have had dealings with in the past, have a mutual connection with, or someone whose attention you are especially anxious to receive. If you have any promotional material, like stickers or badges, throw a few into every package as well.
Make sure your contact information is clearly printed on your EPK, demo, bio, and your press release. You can include a phone number, but you should never ONLY include a phone number. People will be hesitant to call you; include your email address and you will be much more likely to get a response to your package.
Click HERE for more information on developing an EPK.