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If every artist, band or group represents it’s own brand, and must be sold as such to the public and to the music industry, then every brand needs to be packaged in a way that will effectively showcase it’s strengths and marketability. By now, most musicians understand the importance of a press kit- it is your brand, your image, it is you in a package and is the key to selling venues and a&r reps from both major and indie labels on the fact that you WILL make them money. But just making a press kit isn’t enough. In an industry with such a low barrier of entry, anyone can make and submit a press kit, decreasing your chance of actually getting recognized by those who matter. So what will you do to make your press kit more remarkable than the rest? 

There are right ways of making a press kit, and of course there are also wrong ways- but with every artist out there making one, you need more than just a ‘proper’ press kit. There are many different things that can be added in and certain techniques that can be used, that will make your press kit shine much brighter than the rest of the pile. 

The headshot. It’s the single most important marketing tool for an actor, and it’s amazing how many people do it wrong just to cut a few corners. Actors, it’s time to take it more seriously. When that little headshot jpeg pops up on a casting director’s computer, you want them to say, “Yes, bring that person in!” Not “Yikes, that guy kinda scares me.”

Your headshot is your calling card. A nice color 8x10 of your face, from which people will hire you, and you will make lots of money for them. It will be sent out and emailed to tons of casting directors and agents, who see hundreds of these every day, on their desk and on their computer. If your headshot is bad, you look bad. You want to be seen as a pro, not an amateur, so the way you present yourself in your picture is everything. If you want people to take you seriously, you must have a good, high quality, killer headshot. Not an iPhone pic, not a Facebook photo of you outside with the wind gently blowing your hair, and not a JCPenney glamour shot with palm trees in the background that you reproduced at Kinko’s. Save those for your grandma’s mantel. 

Here is what you need to keep in mind when it comes to your headshots:

Many of us have seen those awful headphone shots, those cheesy glamour photos, turntables unplugged and the awkwardly posed dj tangled up in cords. These high quality press-photos are often used for a multitude of promotional material from websites and flyers to swag and magazine interviews. But what if your don’t properly showcase your brand? You’ve seen those perfectly place shots with the headphone and think, “I could do that.” But when it comes to promotional pictures it’s easy to make the common mistakes other hopefuls  have made.  To organically incorporate your personality in your shots, let alone find the right photographer can prove to be a challenge. So I’ve set up some key tips on getting those pictures that leave a lasting impression, both of your brand and your personality. So let’s begin.

Do you ever get stumped wondering what you should share with your fans, friends and followers online? Do you ever worry about bombarding your followers with too many updates?

  • Advice about how often you should post to Facebook and Twitter
  • What to post when you think "I don't have anything to say" (which is a big mistake)
  • How to establish yourself as a valuable authority and resource on your genre

by Simon J. Newbury Photography

Music press releases are the first chance in a press kit to tell the reader what the artist is about and how good they are. Learn how to create your own music press kit and stand out from every other artist with this free video from a professional musician.

Every model needs a good head shot. It's the beginning. It's the first thing that clients see in your book usually. It's the first thing that clients see in your composite card. A good head shot, you want something that's striking, that's going to get someone's attention.

A head shot for an actor is completely different than a head shot for a model because actors, they might be a character actor where they only do one thing. They might be the guy who just does Santa Claus, and that's his head shot. That's what he does. He sells that. It might be the kid who's the freckle-faced red head who, always has a hat on or whatever it is. So characters and actors, their head shots are different.

The arrangement of a music press kit is very important and all the vital selling points for the artist should be directly in the front. Learn how to create your own music press kit and stand out from every other artist with this free video from a professional musician.

You’re on your way to a film festival. Be prepared with ammunition for the press to devour. Have your press kit packed with Rob Tencer’s recommended press kit.

If it's your first film festival, or if you're making a return visit as the lead actor, supporting actor, director or producer, you should have a press kit ready in anticipation of press.

First, understand that the film you’re in has hired a publicist. The reality is this publicist is not concerned with your career and have a different goal, to help the filmmakers sell the film, recoup the cost to the investors.

There is no guarantee that your film at festival will further your career, even if you are the star. Hiring a publicist like is your first step to getting the press you not only deserve, but the press necessary to further your career. Even if you built a press kit on your own, how would you get it into the hands that could help you most? Why would you give it to the film publicist if you were not their priority? By the end of the festival, or after your film was shown for the last time, what do you have to show for it? What if the film was not bought or released until years after the festival? Would you’re big break be wasted?

Ninety percent of band press kits and promo kits end up in the trash can instead of in the hands of music industry executives. This is because most press kits lack the key ingredients that every musician's press kit should include.

Below are some tips to help make sure your publicity materials are actually read and heard by record labels, A&R scouts, newspaper editors, writers, booking agents, program directors and other important music industry professionals that will advance your music career.

Create a Cover Page
The cover page should be a letter addressed to the person you are giving the press kit to. This should have your contact information, website, and basic details about your music and band. Put your contact information on every page of the kit. This page should be eye-catching and visually appealing since it is the first thing that will be seen.

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