In today’s highly technological world, having an online presence is a must when it comes to booking gigs for the independent artist. An online presence lends overall credibility to the artist. What’s more, having all materials aggregated in one place makes it easier for potential venues, event planners, and talent buyers to review the materials and make their decisions on whether or not to hire you or bring you to their stage. This is in essence what an online press kit is – a single web page that offers everything a person would need in order to make a booking decision. It is your online sales tool that will hopefully convince a venue to book you or an event planner to hire you. In this article, I will share the basic make up of an online press kit. Also, keep reading down to the bottom and I will share my secret weapon to creating a killer electronic press kit.
Use your own website or domain.
I’ve mentioned this before in other articles and it is important to say this again. If at all possible, always have your own website with a personal domain, i.e. www.yournamehere.com. If you want to look like a professional artist, you should invest in your own domain and website. There are other websites that will offer you an online presence through a subdomain such as weebly and yolasite, however having your own domain gives you an edge on the competition simply because people can tell that you have gone the extra mile to invest in yourself. That makes a huge difference and it makes you more believable. Once you have your own domain, you can set up a page specifically for your online electronic press kit. This gives you complete autonomy in how you want it to look and the way in which you present it to your audiences. Additionally, you don’t have to put up with unsightly ads and “create your own free website” pop-ups. Another benefit is that if you purchase a domain, you will likely get matching e-mail address options as well. So you can create multiple e-mails for yourself and manage them all through www.yournamehere.com. Having your own domain is worth every penny.
Include things in 3s.
The meat of your press kit is pretty standard and goes without saying. But for the sake of being thorough I will include it here. Make sure you have videos, good promo photos, streaming audio tracks, and reviews of happy venues, audience members, and talent buyers. You should include 3 of each:
-3 of your best photos (promo top quality professional photos)
-3 great reviews
-at least 3 great tracks (full streaming songs)
Put your contact info Every. Where.
Don’t just leave your contact info at the bottom and call it a day. There should be a way to contact you above the fold as well as at the bottom. Include your contact at the top of the information and at the bottom of the information. The press kit should suggest that the person call you. The power of suggestion can be really strong. Use it to your advantage.
Other things to include…
There are other things you should consider including that might help answer some questions a reader might have such as, your calendar, video testimonials, and an option to download a PDF form of your press kit. The calendar will help give folks an idea of how often you perform and how serious you are about your music as a career. It will also help them determine your live performance caliber based on the types of venues you book.
Also, video testimonials are always a good idea. The second-best salesmen you can have, is a happy fan who just experienced your show and thinks you are a rockstar. The energy is high, adrenaline is pumping, they are super excited and will say awesome things about you. Get this on film and share it with people reading your press kit. Let them do the selling for you!
The purpose of your online press kit is to sell your services as a musician. The secret to creating a killer press kit is to make it sell for you using direct marketing techniques. Direct marketing is the pinnacle of generating leads and driving responses. Below, I’ve included some ideas on how to apply this technique to your online press kit. However, you would do yourself a huge favor by studying the practice of direct marketing as a whole to get a better idea of how it works. Having the basics in your press kit is a great start, but to really make it effective you need to pack it with a big sales punch to drive them to the next level – making the contact. Here are some ideas to do just that:
Make qualifying and intrigue statements. A qualifying statement demonstrates what qualifies you for the booking. An intrigue statement invokes curiosity in your reader. Some examples would be to add a really good descriptive, yet intriguing quote about your music or act. This quote will help set you apart from other acts as well as generate intrigue. It should have them telling themselves, “I’ve got to hear what that sounds like,” or “wow, I wonder what he’s like on stage.” An example qualifying statement could list how you will impress their audience such as “we’ve got vocal harmonies that will make your audience melt.” If you’ve been in contact with a celebrity or prestigious magazine or tv show, highlight this on your press kit. It is sure to impress. For example, some products you buy from the store have the “As Seen on TV” emblem on it. This is an accolade that forces you to take a second look. Have you really seen it on TV? It must be sort of good if it’s been on TV? You can apply this same technique to invoke these types of thoughts among those viewing your online press kit.
Lastly, a good direct marketing piece has two things:
• An Offer You Can’t Refuse
• A Call to Action
Usually these items are combined together as a deal with a deadline. “Call by June 30 and receive your FREE (you fill in the blank)!” This is designed to generate leads and to incentivize customers to make a purchasing decision. How can you use your press kit to generate leads for you? Can you make them an offer they can’t refuse? For example, is there a special gift you can send them? “Fill out this form and I’ll send you my all-time favorite collector’s t-shirt.” Figure out a way to collect their information in exchange for something that is super easy for you to provide. That way, even if they don’t make a decision right away, this gives you their information so that you can continue the conversation and/or close the deal at a later date.
In conclusion, the secret to creating a killer online press kit is direct marketing. Optimizing your electronic press kit for generating leads will increase your conversion rate significantly, because it’s not simply information on a page, it is a strategic approach to selling yourself.