CREATING AN ELECTRONIC PRESS KIT (EPK)

As soon as you are at a point where you want or need to reach out to other music professionals, I strongly recommend having an electronic press kit. Not only is it a signal to others that you work on music in a professional work, but it will also make everybody's life much easier and help you to send out your information and music in a way that will make people willing to check it out and ultimately to respond to you! 

What is this all about and why do I need this?

In your music career you’ll contact many people, such as labels, journalists or promoters. Every musician will know the feeling of sending out hundreds of emails but only hearing back from few people. The main reason for that is the huge amount of artists contacting these people, and often making it unnecessarily hard to make clear in a short way why you contact them, who you are and what you’ve been up to.

One thing is to find a way of writing emails in a way that they are not too long, but long enough to mention the most important details and to get somebody hooked on it.

The other very helpful part is to have an electronic press kit, short EPK, to send to them, which is representing one place with all your information, rather than sending them an email with many links to your website, social media, music videos, streaming platforms, past and future gigs, press photos, technical riders etc. This would end up looking really messy, and would require that the other person has to click on many different links to different sources, and believe me, people are usually too impatient and lazy to do this. 

There are two recommended ways of presenting your EPK:

 

  • As a hidden page on your website – this is in my eyes the best looking and easiest way and if you already have a website, i would strongly recommend this (see the example below)

  • As a Dropbox or Google Drive folder: This is also common, but simply doesn’t look as good as the first option and requires a lot of opening different documents etc

What should my press kit include?

Make sure to include the following information in your press kit:

Short bio / One-Sheet

 

A good, interesting to read text about yourself!

If you have troubles writing this yourself, I recommend asking another person (native english speaker if possible) to do this. I sometimes even hired a music journalist for a small fee to write something nicely (also for album bios by the way).

 

You’ll send this to many people, promoters and journalists often might copy and paste this or you’ll use it for event description on Facebook etc, so it’s absolutely worth it to write a nice text which will underline your character and strength. I would not recommend including information about your childhood (“started playing guitar in the age of 7” will really not interest anybody), but keep it about your professional music life, if not having some real stand-out facts about the time before. It can also include information of your way of performing or your career highlights and collaborations. I recommend something like 10-15 sentences for the short bio. If you want to offer a more detailed bio, you could add a link below, like “read full bio” on a website EPK, or if using Dropbox/Google Drive, add a document called “Full bio”.

Generally if using Dropbox/Google Drive, this document should be called One-Sheet, which will tell people that all important info (also those below) can be find in this one document.

Highlights

 

If you have career highlights such as live performances, TV/radio, outstanding press reviews, collaborations, high amount of streams/video views or whatever it may be, I recommend adding a short list of these under the bio. People like to see these kind of things and are often more impressed by these short facts and numbers than by a bio.

All links to your social media & music

If having a website EPK, I recommend having this on top of or below the short bio. You should have buttons to your all social media platforms and streaming sites (Spotify, iTunes, Soundcloud, Bandcamp...). On a hidden website you can usually add media players / Spotify players, so that people can listen directly on the page if they don't like to jump onto another platform.

If using Dropbox/Google Drive, add links to all these to the One-Sheet.

Optional links to unreleased music:

Some musicians decide to add this as well, either just as a streaming link or even downloadable. I personally would be very careful about a link to download music, I would rather want that a person with a reason to download would ask me directly. If you don’t feel comfortable about sharing the whole upcoming new music, it might be an option for you to just show teasers? It really depends on how you fell about it. I also often didn’t include upcoming music on the general EPKs, but rather add this link to emails then if I think somebody should have access to it.

Press photos + Press reviews

Very important is to offer people downloadable high resolution press photos and if you have an overview of some press reviews. On the website EPK I usually add buttons called “Press photos” and “Press reviews”, which will then lead somebody to a Google Drive or Dropbox folder, from which they can then download the photos or see the press review document. Make sure to add the photographer credits to the file name of each photo.

Regarding the press reviews, I usually try to sort it in some way, e.g. for each album release, chronologically and for different languages. Here one example how I would add each review:

 

Piano & Coffee on “The Journey Tapes”

“A heavily emotional album, The Journey Tapes will surely prove to be a phenomenal debut”

 

You see that I mention the source and what they wrote a review on (in this case on an album called “The Journey Tapes”), then I even add one sentence, and then I set a hyperlink. I think that this way it looks clean and makes it easy for people to see right away the most important information. 

Tech riders

If having a website EPK, I recommend having this on top of or below the short bio. You should have buttons to your all social media platforms and streaming sites (Spotify, iTunes, Soundcloud, Bandcamp...). On a hidden website you can usually add media players / Spotify players, so that people can listen directly on the page if they don't like to jump onto another platform.

If using Dropbox/Google Drive, add links to all these to the One-Sheet.

Optional links to unreleased music:

Some musicians decide to add this as well, either just as a streaming link or even downloadable. I personally would be very careful about a link to download music, I would rather want that a person with a reason to download would ask me directly. If you don’t feel comfortable about sharing the whole upcoming new music, it might be an option for you to just show teasers? It really depends on how you fell about it. I also often didn’t include upcoming music on the general EPKs, but rather add this link to emails then if I think somebody should have access to it.

Live dates

On a web EPK you can add these also below other info, usually you can even add a Songkick tool like you see here, so that the live dates will always be automatically updated. Sometimes I also add old live dates, if an artist had a good amount of gigs in different countries and interesting locations, just so that people can see that the artist has done a lot.

If using Dropbox/Google Drive, I would probably not add live dates, as it’s quite a hassle to keep it up to date and it’s usually not part of the one-sheet. But you are of course free to do whatever you think makes sense.

Contacts / team

Many artists forget this very important part, the contact information for yourself, your management, label, sync agent, publisher, booker or whomever you are working with. This should be on the one-sheet or somewhere on the top or bottom of your website EPK

Videos

on a web EPK, I recommend adding two or three videos. If you have a decent live video of yourself, definitely add that! If using Dropbox/Google Drive, I would probably add one or two video links to the One-Sheet or you can also have the video file itself in the main folder.

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