What is an EPK?
An EPK (Electronic Press Kit) is somewhere to keep all the necessary information and resources for someone to be able to access when reviewing, booking or promoting your band. I’m going to go through some of the essential and most useful things to have in yours.
Starting with the obvious, your name
This can be both your stage name and your real name. Including your real name can give people reading that little extra bit of information that makes things a bit more personal. Of course, if you want to remain mysterious, maybe leave your real name out.
Date of birth
Without obviously shouting out your age, it might be nice to include your birth date. This will give the person reading an indication of what kind of generation you may appeal to but also is just another piece of information for further reference.
People consume music through videos. If you don’t have an interesting video, then you are less likely to reach all the people you could. It also may give people a flavour of your live performance style or your artistic direction.
People like to see what you look like. It’s all part of your visual image and presence. Don’t try to be someone you aren’t, instead amplify and exaggerate your existing personality traits. Don’t bother too much with black and white images. If someone wants to they can render the photos black and white themselves. Stay in a high resolution, this can easily be sized down. The same cannot be said for the opposite.
What’s a band without the music? It might be nice to include links to streaming sights such as bandcamp and soundcloud but also include a password-gated dropbox link for journalists to access the full album.
Set a scene with this. Include where you are from, both original and current locations. If you’re from Mull but you’re now based in Edinburgh, that is a perfect thing to mention. The more idiosyncratic the information, the more people will be intrigued. Include a description of your music, the more unique, or even daft, the better. This also stops the journalist/DJ from pigeon-holing you with a genre you don’t identify with. Influences are a big one, be sure to provide three. Mention connections you have made, to show what you are capable of and what stage you are at. Also media coverage you have had for the same token. Of course, it would be wise to include release and member info too. And also have a tagline at the start of this or your press release. People are intrigued by short pithy statements.
Album cover / art
It would be wise to include these in several different resolutions, for different purposes. Image sizes as part of their title can be useful.
Can be more than one and of different lengths, depending on what information you need to get across. This should be relevant to what you’re trying to promote and include some of the information you mentioned in your bio.
They need more info? Include and e-mail address or a phone number you don’t mind being bothered on; or if you have an agent or manager, their number.
One compact 8.5 x 11 inch document with a summarised information from your press kit. Ideal for printing off and handing out at networking events.
Including writing credits and even lyrics. Creating a separate folder for lyrics may come in handy when communicating with publishers.
To give a flavour of the band’s ideas and personality. Ideal for sourcing the artists’ idiosyncrasies and finding interesting quotes.
You can customise this for different situations and print it off along with your one-sheet and CD when communicating with DJs and other influential figures in the biz.
You can include a group of these if they run in a similar theme.
Literally anything creative that a journalist or DJ will be able to talk/write about. Examples include logos for an award you have won or an e-book related to music that you have written.
So that’s a brief round-up of what you can include in an EPK. I’ll be taking a closer look at your online and public presence in coming weeks. Stay tuned…
– Sandy (firstname.lastname@example.org, @sandypower89)