7 Things To Keep In Mind When Designing Your Press Kit

Press

A mention in a magazine, a radio interview, or a TV appearance can definitely help your business reach the next level.

But in most cases for that to happen you need something more than a simple business card or an online portfolio.

A press kit (or media kit) is not a portfolio or resume. You give your resume or link to your portfolio/website to your potential clients, and you give your media kit to the press, to a journalist.

You want to be perceived as a professional. Someone who is driven, and is “going places“.

You can create a press kit for a special occasion (event, conference) and design it so it’ll appeal to certain people or companies. Or create a more generic one, that will be fine to give to any journalist that could be interested (provided you know exactly who to give it to, don’t just send it and pray you’ll get a call back). It all depends on the audience you’re targeting and your goals.

Doing Things Differently

I strongly believe in doing things differently. The usual press kit model is fine, but I encourage you to make it so that it reflects your character and your vision, it has to say “hey we’re unique” . Don’t be afraid to experiment, and ask for opinions. A media pack that is “out of this world” has more chances of getting the attention of the press than 10 pages of black text on a white background, although this proves to be very effective in some cases. It has to be easy on the eye and put only relevant information.

Does this piece of information serves any purpose? No? Then drop it, don’t put it in your press kit.

Contact Information and Facts

Of course, you need a page that lists your contact information and infos about your business. This page should be easy to read and reference to and should contain the following infos:

  • Business name
  • History or bio
  • In business since…?
  • Number of employees (if any)
  • Location
  • Products/Services Offered (not a sales pitch)
  • Contact infos

Frequently Asked Questions

Don’t put too much information on this page, only the questions/answers you get most often. You’ve been working in your field for months or years, so you know what questions you get a lot. Answer those questions on that page, but make sure you don’t list 174 questions, you want the journalist/press/interviewer to contact you for a meeting or phone interview. Leave out some information so you have something to say during the interview. :)

This section should contain information that will be helpful to a journalist or interviewer to better prepare an interview or article.

Samples And Promo Material

You absolutely need to include some free samples (with descriptions or specs) of your product, that’s a no-brainer. This works wonder in getting attention of the press. If you wrote a book, it makes total sense to send a copy along with your media kit. You can also include business cards, promotional pens, CD/DVDs. Anything that might be relevant and make the person go “wow“.

Visually Appealing

To ensure your press kit will get the attention it deserves you have to have some eye candy. A basic logo at the top of a every page won’t cut it anymore. You need more than that, cause in most cases it won’t work really well. You need pro pictures, an interesting design, colors, graphics. Consider hiring a professional to create your press kit.

The most interesting press kits I’ve seen all had something different and we’re designed by a professional. Of course, you can design it yourself, it’s cheaper, but your image is extremely important. Remember, if you don’t have the skills to create your own press package, hire someone to do it for you.

Testimonials

Always include a page where you list some great testimonials you received from your clients (ask for permission to use those testimonials though). First it looks like you’re doing a good job (you’re a professional), and second it tells the press who you have worked with. Always put the best testimonial at the top of the page (or at a really prominent spot). This page should say something like:

see, all those people are extremely happy with my work/company

No shameless self-promotion here, just honest testimonials from clients and people that work in your field.

Achievements

What is it that you offer that makes you or your company unique? Where have you been featured? In what magazine, on what website? This can also be considered as testimonials. So if you don’t have a lot of great testimonials, you can merge those 2 pages together.

Every press kit is different and should be designed to fit you, your style, your company and give a positive image/impression. The most important thing: It needs to be unique and easy to read/scan. You’re not the only one that is sending his media package to the press, make sure it stands out. ;)

Jon

Comments

  1. says

    Great points. Media Kit is something I have on the front burner…I’ll get to it just after establishing a cash flow then the Media Kit is in the works. Thanks for providing the outline.
    Mr Business Golf

  2. says

    Good article. I think full blown media kits are probably too much for freelancers, entrepreneurs, and small business owners. The results just don’t justify the cost, and in my experience reporters just don’t read media kits unless they come from someone like Microsoft.

    I think a better way to go is to have a bio of yourself or a sheet with brief bios of your top employees (if you have them) along with a one sheet overview of what your company does. Then, try to schedule face-to-face meetings with reporters. Maybe find your local business reporter and invite him/her for a cup of coffee. When you’re face to face, tell them all about your company and how you can be a resource to them, and leave them with your couple of sheets of materials to help them remember you.

    Steve Mullen
    EndGame Public Relations
    Startup BizCast

  3. says

    I like the creativity idea. I would also suggest that a person taking this on think largely as a reporter. Think back to anytime that you took a high-school or college journalism class. You’re goal here is to make the job of the reporter’s effortless.

    …so think like a reporter.

    Cover you who, what, wheres, whens, and whys, and find the angle that is making your business newsworthy.

    Journalist, columnist, reporters, radio host, and may other aspiring medium hosts have many more “slots” than they resources to fill, often. So if you come along and present an easy serve gem, it’s sure to get scooped up!

    Take care,
    Chad.

  4. says

    Hi Scot, thanks, I’m happy you found those tips useful. A media kit is not something everyone will need, but at some point it’s a good thing to have, when you want to get press coverage, you kinda need one :)

    Steve, I think you’re right, it may not be the most cost effective way to go for freelancers, but maybe for a design company it would (maybe). Even if it’s a small business it doesn’t hurt to have a media package, sometimes it’s all that’s missing to get that business to the next level. A friend of mine (who runs a web design company) got bombarded with phone calls and e-mails after his company was featured in the newspaper (in Montreal), it really depends on the goals you set I think.

    But you’re right, nothing beats face-to-face meetings ;)

    Chad, good points you bring, it’s true you have to think like a reporter. A little like blogs, we can always use more content ;)

    Your right on the money when yous say your have to find that angle. What makes it unique. (your, yours, you’re hehe) ;)

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