How to Make an Impressive EPK for Your Band

Press kits have been used for years by musicians and bands to hold relevant information about their music. The traditional versions of the kits were physical and were widely used by musicians as well as their agents and managers to promote music. For groups signed to large labels, their kits were quite impressive, and they typically contained press clippings, promo CDs, biography, and press releases. Some of these kits have become iconic and have fetched a lot of money from the collector’s marketplace. The Rolling Stones, for example, have had some of their memorable ones sell for over $100. The kits were quite expensive for many artists, however. The Electronic Press Kits revolutionized the landscape in such a way that most artists can afford to create one.

An EPK is basically a digital press kit with the necessary information concerning a musician or band. EPKs have several advantages over traditional kits in cost and distribution efficiency. While EPKs have mostly phased out physical kits in the 21st century, some groups still put out the latter. The EPK is quite essential especially when it comes to branding and promoting and demonstrating a musician’s accomplishments.

Why You Need an Electronic Press Kit

An electronic press kit offers a slew of advantages to a musician or band including:

They are Streamlined – In the digital age, most musicians have a social media presence, and they have displayed some information about who they are and their brand of music. Getting an EPK may, therefore, seem like a duplication of this information. Members of the press and event organizers have busy schedules, and nothing can get more time-consuming than sifting through social media pages to find what you are looking for. EPKs are well organized, and it helps the music stakeholders to navigate to the exact details they want.

Information Variety – Music consumers, event coordinators, agents, and journalists all source for different types of information. Fans will quickly navigate to video clips of your shows while the press wants facts like the awards a musician has won and what venues you have showcased at. Event coordinators are more concerned with the details of your contact person if you play original material and the kind of amenities you require to perform. All these tidbits are efficiently housed in an EPK.

Branding and Promotion – The internet is brand-hungry as many players are continually trying to get a slice of the vast platform. An EPK not only showcases an artist’s accomplishments but it also speaks to their attitude, values, and musical culture. By evaluating your EPK, people can relate to your brand in a way that becomes more recognizable to them. Most organizers, venues, and magazines will ask a musician or brand to send them a press kit to review. The kit should not be basic either, as it influences potential clients of the reasons why they should hire you.

Software for EPKs

Musicians and bands are often drawn to EPKs due to their affordability. You do need to hire a designer to design a professional kit. You can use standard software like PowerPoint or Open Office to curate an impressive electronic press kit. Creating an EPK using computer software can easily be done in the same way you add to a Word document. First add the text of your choice, followed by images, after which you can implement different stylistic options. There are many free and paid templates to create an electronic press kit. You can evaluate your budget and get the option that fits you and your style of music.

Information to Include in an Electronic Press Kit

An EPK should be well structured such that interested parties find the information they want quickly and easily. This information can include:

Biography – The bio serves as the primary text element of your kit. It describes who you are as a musician or band and highlights career achievements. An obvious inclusion in this category is your name. Most artists go by their stage names, and their real names may be oblivious to the press and their fans. The names of the members of musical groups should also be listed. Real names make fans feel more connected to you. Another element placed at the top is the Date of Birth as the press commonly looks for it.

Most kits feature the “About Me” section where an artist will detail where they are from, the kind of music they play, the length of time they have been in the industry, and their style of music. This section is generally about anything that artists feel defines them. You can illustrate your musical journey including the process of getting started. The point of the bio is to grab the attention of the reader and make them interested enough to sample your music.

Audio Links – Event organizers and music consumers mainly peruse an EPK for the music, making it the most crucial component of your kit. Promoters tend to listen to the top music files so ensure you put your best work at the bottom. The files need to also sound professional. The last thing you want is listeners listening to low-quality work. You can opt for reputable streaming services like Spotify, Soundcloud, Bandcamp, iTunes, YouTube, or your website.

Some artists opt to have most of their songs or albums in mp3 downloadable form on their EPK. To do this, ensure that your metadata is correct and complete. If you do not mind offering your music for free, then this option may be ideal for you. It can be especially beneficial if radio stations want to review your music. Whichever music site you link to, ensure you keep updating it. Most people who evaluate your EPK will be more interested in sampling or reviewing your music than in consuming it but having links, where your fans can buy the files, show professionalism. It is also information they will mention when they release their review in which case it will boost your music sales.

High-Resolution Photos – The need for high-resolution photos cannot be emphasized enough. Cell phone selfies do not make the cut, however, as an EPK should be as professional as it can be. Professional photos are ideal which should be at least 1920 ×1080. 4,000 pixels is adequate for cropping purposes. Promoters typically use these images for posters and entertainment agents have them in their rosters.

You may not need a lot of photos, but a variety will pay off. Include headshots in color and black and white as well as landscape and promotional shots. When figuring out a photoshoot theme, aim to be unique. Enlist the services of an expert photographer to come up with original concepts. The files should also include intuitive texts. Images should be uploaded with the relevant metadata like the year of photo release, musical keywords, town and country, band name, contact info, and the names of the members.

Include vertical and horizontal options since different outlets vary in their layout preferences. Include several shots from your performances which should capture the “vibe” of your musical style. If the website builder limits the size of image files, include a link to such storage applications like Dropbox and Google Drive. The cover art for music releases and an image version of your logo can be added as well.

Videos – High-quality video footage is a winning addition to any EPK. Videos are easily shareable and consumable, and they provide some multimedia content for the press to include in their review. Music writers are also drawn to musicians with captivating videos as it encourages interest among their readers. A promo video is a great marketing tool that can be included in an EPK. It can consist of shots of your live performance and some overlaid pieces of information about your band. The more eye-catching, the better to appeal to promotional agents.

You can also include a slideshow of several appealing images or even a lyric production. If you cannot afford videography, opt to use platforms like Fiverr to get affordable animation videos. Clips of future projects are also fair game. To manage file size, upload these videos on sites like Vimeo or YouTube and embed the links instead. The best productions will help your cause the most. If you have an album in the works, include relevant material.

Website and Social Media – Your website provides more in-depth and additional information to promoters and potential managers. Direct these stakeholders to your well-crafted site which should also be regularly updated. Ensure that your website also keeps up with the style of your EPK such that it is a supplementary rather than a contradictory platform.

Most people who will navigate through your EPK will gravitate towards your social media pages. These platforms can include YouTube, Instagram, Soundcloud, and Facebook. Not only will people be interested in the number if your followers but your level of engagement as well. Promoters are concerned with how this following translates to a fanbase. A band with thousands of followers might be impressive on paper, but if they only get a handful of people to their shows, it is a discouraging sign to promoters. You, therefore, need to post frequently and engage actively with the follower-base. Include only the social pages where you are the most-active and command the largest following.

Upcoming Tour or Show Dates – You further want to include the dates for upcoming dates, tours, locations, and launches. This information lets bloggers and journalists show up for the gigs and review you. Booking agents will also find it easier to work around your band’s schedule. Tour dates illustrate your bankability to managers and promoters. They want to know if you are in demand and in which precise locations. If you get mentioned in a podcast, review, or on the radio, your shows can also get promoted.

Press Releases – Press releases are especially essential for new albums. Writing an appealing press release is an art. You need to have a compelling hook to draw attention and attract reviews. You can use a distribution service like Mi2N or MusicSubmit. The best option is using an expert publicist as it is a bit challenging to write your own objectively. The press release should include the name of the tour, venues and dates, a description of the event, contact info, and embedded links to the various web locations.

Press Quotes and Testimonials – This category holds the recent links to the press you have been mentioned in. The reviews can be from renowned artists, journalists, bloggers, or promoters. It would be desirable to have the most favorable reviews included. If you are a band that concentrates on functions, you can showcase quotes from previous clients. Several keys points of interest will boost your presentation and credibility.
Contact Details- It is essential to include the contact information of the members of the band, managers, and agents. Specify two people who are the preferred point of contact. These individuals should be the go-to authority when it comes to press, booking, and management.

Make Your EPK Stand Out

It is easy to craft and EPK. The trick is making it unique and distinct. One strategy you can use for this is to be specific about your niche. An EPK is basically a digital pitch to a potential client. Much like a resume should be specific, your EPK should attract the kind of opportunities you want. If you want to get a publishing deal, for example, your EPK should speak to your songwriting skills. If you intend to land a tour or gig, your kit should illustrate how competent you are at live performances. Ensure that your EPK will get the attention of agents you intend it to.

You can also host your EPK on your website page. Hosting the kit on your site brings potential clients and listeners to your territory making it easier for them to navigate through all of your work. You also have more control with your site as other platforms may experience downtime making your kit unavailable when it is needed.

Many EPKs get caught up in the facts and figures. An EPK should ideally tell a story. Why should promoters pay attention to your production? What story can your audience connect with? Music stakeholders receive hundreds of pitches which is why yours should make their work easier by standing out. Showcase how incredible your work is and what they stand to gain by collaborating with your band.

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