Press kit is a form of formal demo presentation given to a music industry professional. Way back 2004 I am researching what are the ways to make an effective press kit. And these are the important points:
a. Basically press kit is a more formal one, a complete presentation package that can be done for an inspiring artist to break the deal.
b. Basically press kit itself should contain more than the song itself, it contains biography, reviews and photos if you are an artist.
If you are in doubt what to submit when someone ask for your demo. Here is my guide:
a. If you are a singer-songwriter with active performances, I go for a press kit because it is a more formal one. It gives my performance details and achievements.
b. If you are just a songwriter, I still go for a press kit but not including possibly lowering the formality than doing an artist press kit.Although song reviews are still very important.
Most of the requesting parties if you are a songwriter are the music publishing firms. It is because they are looking actively for marketable songs. If the requesting parties are the recording labels. They see you as an artist and you should submit a complete press kit including the sharp and clear photos of yourself. The recording should be done extremely well, the same quality as the commercial audio CD production.
Take of the following facts when someone ask for a demo CD(it could a recording label, music publishers or any music firms):
a. Always send an CD audio demo, not MP3 or other formats. It is because, a wav file is a complete production of your music. MP3 is a compressed and not always show the full potential of your sound. The difference may be hard to notice between a WAV file (CD audio quality) and an MP3. But the music producers, recording labels as well experienced music publishers can really notice this a lot.
b. When send an audio CD demo, use the 44.1 KHz 2 channel audio CD format (the standard one), or else if you send the wrong audio format, it will not be playable in their audio CD players.
c. Since you are a songwriter, always include lyrics and some song reviews done professionally. Do not let your mother or sister to give reviews for you.
d. Go for a professional looking press kit. We may settle for a creative one (handmade) but a professional looking press kit really means a lot to your audience. It shows your professionalism and committment in the music business. And they will treat you professionally as well. How many times songwriters made a mistake by submitting a very lousy demo. Remember if getting signed is very rare, and having someone to ask your demo is also rare. So you have to make it great.
e. Bear in mind the music industry professionals mostly hate to listen demos online, because it is MP3 format, takes time to play especially if the connection is slow. And they always prefer to have an audio CD demo more than doing it online.
Congratulations if a recording label ask you for a press kit because they think you are AMAZING! Millions are waiting in the line and hoping to be ask for a demo.Submitting a demo without the label asking for it is unsolicited and therefore label will not even listen to it. So it is very lucky to have a music professional ask you for a demo.
If you have a chance to make a press kit, it is your chance to get noticed and to sell yourself. Do the best in it, if you are not confident in making the press kit. You can even avail the services in the internet that specializes in making a professional press kit. You pay for it but the quality is great, and remember you only have one chance for it and you have to do it right!
Sample press kit for a singer-songwriter/artist sample and tutorials can be found in youtube.com just search like “ how to make presskit”.