HOW TO MAKE AN EPK (IN 7 EASY STEPS)
Wanna get featured on blogs? Wanna spread your music and grow your fanbase?
You will need an electronic press kit, AKA EPK.
Today I’ll show you how to get an EPK ready to send to record labels, blogs and even Spotify playlists.
What is an EPK?
EPK Stands for Electronic Press Kit and it’s your career’s storyteller.
Let’s get a little bit more specific. Your Press Kit is where labels, venue managers, A&R’s, Spotify Playlisters, music supervisors and bloggers will find all of the info they need to promote you.
The main goal of an EPK is to let them know what your project is about, what you’ve already achieved, and what makes your music unique.
The old school EPK method was by sending a (big fat) e-mail with a bunch of attachments. In 2019, the music industry doesn’t have the time to process all that data. That’s why you need to have an online EPK. And if everything’s in one-page, even better. You don’t want to risk anything here.
This is so easy for promoters to go through. They load your EPK page just ONCE and they have everything they need to know about you there. I’ll tell you more soon 🙂
Do I need an EPK?
Yes, you do. There’s no ‘Major League’ artist without a Press Kit. And I guess you wanna play the ‘Major League’, right?
As I mentioned before, A&R’s, journalists, record labels don’t have the time to browse the internet until they find you. They’ll promote the artist that is easiest to write about.
That’s what we’re gonna aim for. Simplicity! You want them to know everything about your project in a few clicks.
Now let me show you the most effective technique to building a kickass EPK.
STEP# 1: Music (The most popular and the newest)
We’re music makers, inspired artists, songwriters, producers. We make music. That’s the main thing!
There are 2 important things to keep in mind here: Best and New is a must!
These people are gonna take 1 minute or less to take a listen to you. That’s the time you’ve got. So you want to include your best music.
It’s also important to keep in mind that you need to give them New music. This is basically because no one wants to talk about old news. If you’re pitching them a song you released 1 year ago, they won’t probably feel motivated enough to team up with you.
STEP# 2: Bio
Here we want to talk about how amazing we are! But let’s keep it short 🙂
I know that you probably love talking about yourself and your artist career. And I personally love listening to those stories! Actually, hit me up on firstname.lastname@example.org and tell me!
But regarding your EPK. You want to give them facts. I usually like to think about 2 types of bio: Short & Extended.
The extended one is the one that your fans wanna know about! This is how you would tell your awesome story to your closest friends and people.
Now, the short one is perfect for your EPK. We raise the chances of having them talking about us!
How short should your bio be?
I Always recommend as short as possible. Sometimes, artists usually think it’s ‘not enough’ and they end up writing a ‘not as short’ bio. At the end of the day, this is about you and your project. So we can be flexible here. We can say that a good bio should be about 65 to 250 words.
Example of my favorite type of bio:
‘DJ EKLYPSE IS A CANADIAN INDIE ROCK BAND BASED IN MONTREAL, QUEBEC. THE BAND MEMBERS ARE: DEVON SHWARTZ ON VOCALS, GUITAR AND PERCUSSION; CONNER MCDAVID ON VOCALS, GUITAR AND KEYBOARD; DYLAN DYLAN ON VOCALS, DRUMS AND KEYBOARD; AND ISAAC MOHAMED ON VOCALS, PERCUSSIONS, MANDOLIN, KEYBOARD AND GUITAR. THE GROUP IS KNOWN FOR THEIR HEAVY USE OF PERCUSSION, AND FOR PLAYING MULTIPLE INSTRUMENTS DURING LIVE PERFORMANCES.’
STEP# 3: Videos
Videos are extremely powerful. They have the ability to explain what’s going on in a few seconds.
Here’s a video I made for the Freak Show Music Festival by Samantha Leah:
Make sure you include music videos, interviews and relevant content only.
If you don’t have any relevant video to include on your EPK, no worries! You will have it at some point, so for now. Move onto the next thing!
You can actually start thinking about making a videoclip with a really low budget. The outcome is amazing and it looks professional. My good friend Indy Mogul talks about that on this video:
STEP# 4: Imagery
The best pictures! Show them how awesome you are 🙂
No excuses with this. If you don’t have cool pictures, take your phone and get them.
If you’re the ‘I don’t know how to take pictures’ type of person, then open instagram and type #musicphoto on the search bar. Now you are in front of THOUSANDS of references you can get inspiration from.
Take 5 of your favorite ones and try to recreate (not copy) them.
Use some free editing software like Snapseed and voilá! You’ve got awesome pictures now.
STEP# 5: ZIP File
Now, gather everything together and make a ZIP file.
You want them to be able to download all your data at once. So you’ll make a ZIP file and you’ll upload it to Google Drive or Dropbox. You’ll use a link to your Google Drive or Dropbox so they’ll be able to download all your information instantly.
STEP# 6: Let’s go online
You did a great job finding all your assets. Now we’re ready to go online!
If you have your website already, you need to make a new page. Make sure the url is easy to type in. Example: www.yourname.com/press-kit
If you don’t have a website, then what are you waiting for? If you’re taking your music career seriously, you need a website. There is no way around it. There are many things you’re missing by not having a website, but the main one is MERCH. And even if you don’t have anything to sell yet, you can start for free using services on demand like Printful.
That means you could be setting up your store right now for FREE.
You can start your website on WordPress, Squarespace or Wix right now.
I’m personally a WordPress guy.
I know it’s more technical, but at the end of the day it ends up being cheaper and the tools you have on WordPress don’t exist at all on a Wix or Squarespace site.
There are NO excuses on this.
STEP# 7: Design (Keep it simple)
You’ve got your URL, now let’s put everything together.
Remeber I said something about a one-page EPK? Well, this is exactly the way I do it for my artists: https://jakealdridge.com/press-kit
So that’s basically a page that will load just once and it has all the information we’ve been talking about. They only need to click around the menu to find every asset that you uploaded there for them. I’ve never found anything as compact as this design. Remember to keep it simple and clean. This is your resumé as a music artist.
Grab the link of the file you previously uploaded on Google Drive/Dropbox and make sure to include it on your design. On the example I just showed you, there are 3 links to that file. One is on the main picture on the top, the next one on the main menu and the third one on the left side. That way is easier for the press to download. They won’t get lost!
Creating an electronic press kit is crucial if you’re looking for consistent results in your music career.
You will need: Your best and newest music, compelling video content, short & extended bio, pictures, ZIP file containing all that and finally get everything on your website.
It’s crazy, but there are not a lot of indie artists making their EPK’s. The thing is: They complain about not being booked or featured. For me that sounds like someone complaining of a car not working when the main reason is they don’t put fuel.
I’d love to know your thoughts on this! Do you have an EPK already? Share it with me on the comments below! Or just hit me up by email to email@example.com
If you don’t have an EPK feel free to contact me, I’ll be happy to help you!