If you’re a musician you’ve seen those posts in the numerous musician groups that exist on social media pages. The posts saying “Looking for bands to play a show. DM me if interested” Ok, so first lets pay attention to what they said: “DM me if interested” Follow those instructions. Don’t tag your band in the comments “The Billy Bob Biscuits and Tea are interested” DM means to Direct Message them via their inbox. So now that ever cleared that up, what should you be sending them?
It would be easy to say “Hey, my band is called Jimmy John’s Fab Five and we’d like more info about that show you posted about in that group” but that’s not making yourself standout. So here’s where an EPK comes into play. Wait, you don’t know what an EPK is??? That’s ok. That is the whole point of this series. We understand that no musician is born knowing all of the things they need to have to get themselves out there. We want to help you not have to fumble through this machine called the music industry. EPK means Electronic Press Kit. It is a digital press kit for your band.
Why does it matter? An EPK collects all of your pertinent information in one quick file that you can send off to a promoter instead of sending a bunch of links or copying and pasting your bio each time you try to get a gig. It is NOT a website. A Website is for the general public and is intended to make you look good. An EPK needs to get to the point and sell your band hard. WHY SHOULD THEY BOOK YOU? One common thing we hear from bands is “I don’t know how to promote myself. It feels like sales” It IS sales. You have to promote yourself and tell people why they should book you. No one else is going to do that for you the way you need it done.
When it comes to an EPK you need to need to keep it as short as possible. Venues and promoters do not have a lot of time to read through all of these. They get a lot of inquiries and will not spend time reading a six paragraph bio. You could do a video embed in your EPK that tells your story in two – three minutes. Here are the things to include in your EPK:
Music: Put your best foot forward. Hit them with your best tracks that will grab their attention.
Social Media Links: They will want to know your audience reach so be sure to focus on building those social channels. YouTube, TikTok, Facebook, Instagram… you need to be on all of these. X (formerly Twitter) is not as important as a lot of venues do not engage on their.
Bio: a quick biography that tells who you are without getting wordy.
Band Photos: Include your photos you want to be used in promotional materials. If you don’t do this, they’re going to scour your facebook and find that pic from five years ago that has the wrong drummer in it. Don’t let them tell your story incorrectly.
Support Quotes: Venues and promoters you’ve worked with in the past are a great place to get quotes about how you were to work with. If they hate you, keep looking.
Contact Info: Email address, phone number…insert here. Don’t make them ask.
You can house your EPK on your website as a link that you send to the venues but make it so its not accessible to the general public. But however you do it, you need to have one. Google EPK and you will find tools that can help you build one.