Published on November 25th, 2014 | by Dylan Lott2
Press Kits Are Irrelevant.
In the BandHacks group of authors, there are discussions on what it means to be “lean.” This a post briefly discussing the topic and why you should never fucking make a press kit.
First, let’s talk about lean mentality. “Lean” is the idea of cutting the “fat” of getting stuff done. Being lean means pivoting fast, being bold, and getting stuff done rapidly. Where others are weighed down by process and nostalgic ways, those who are lean typically have greater success by taking advantage of opportunity while it is there, instead of letting Father Time drain their souls. There are countless essays on the idea of being lean. Most target start-ups or companies,, but you can easily translate it to mean your band or booking agency, or beyond.
What does this have to do with a press kit? EVERYTHING.
First, press kits are largely outdated, old relics from a time before the Internet. Even electronic press kits (EPKs) have fallen to the wayside thanks to social networking. Is it cool to have a website to refer to for your fans? Absolutely, that’s totally necessary.
But if a promoter is going to book you, or if a label is going to sign you, the LAST thing they’re going to look at is twenty pages of crap (or links to thirty pages or crap) to see what you’re about. Buzz is infinitely better than a page talking about you. Genuine excitement from fans is key and necessary to get anywhere in music.
Press kits are cumbersome. All you need is a Facebook page and one link to your music! The faster a company can check you out, the faster you can get booked.
But doesn’t a press kit provide a one stop shop for all of that? Well, yes and no. It provided a little bit of many things that could have been useful before, like a paper with a write up about your band and a CD or something. But people aren’t looking at only that. People who move quickly typically also look at metrics. Total likes, YouTube plays, engagement, especially narrowed down to certain markets. A press kit can’t and won’t have this information. Especially when a promoter is spending money to have you play in an area, it makes the most sense to provide numbers like these efficiently. It also shows you’re serious.
Press kits are largely irrelevant in this day and age. If you’re looking to get an edge up on other artists to become more successful, consider alternate but equally important means. One example is having a mobile app. Phones are ubiquitous nowadays, so why shouldn’t your band get on these platforms?
Move quickly, and don’t be cumbersome to the people who can get you further by providing kits to unnecessary amounts of information. If you insist on such archaic things like press kits, provide raw metrics.