A band’s Web site gives industry professionals and fans alike that all-important first look, first impression, first vibe. A&R reps, booking agents, nightclub managers, columnists, music reviewers, band managers, and fans often go to a music web site before deciding to return a call, write a press blurb, or see a show. Web sites are the press kits of the twenty-first century. Easy to access and navigate, they are an immediate resource of unlimited information for bands, the press, audiences, and record buyers.
Too often I see sites that are outdated, don’t tell an attention-getting story about the band, or bury pertinent information that the industry needs at the end of a long and basically boring bio. Remember, you tell us why we should listen to your music. We cannot guess what makes you special.
Press kits are synchronous to an artist’s Web site in style and design. Press kits serve as abbreviated hard copies of succinct information derived from the Web site. They also often contain tactile and tangible items related to the promotion of the artist. Most press kits contain an actual CD and some piece of brand merchandising (button, poster, banner) to help us remember the band.
It’s imperative that you define who you are to the industry. Because of the sheer amount of product sent out, no one has the time, initially, to discern what makes you special or to determine the best song on the record. No one has the time, on the first pass, to listen to the whole record, read your entire bio, and look at all your press clips. But everyone is looking for that hint of potential in each pile of CDs that makes them take a closer look, listen more intently, research the band more completely. Make your music presentation stand out from the stack.
Develop the two powerful tools that help set you apart from the crowd: your web site and your press kit. Learn how to stop being just another band with your hand out looking for a deal—by establishing a web site that reflects the band accurately and highlights your accomplishments, and developing a tag line, logo, and style. Create better ways to describe your music, what makes a good story, what goes into a press kit, and the basics of media opportunities. You’ll be able to talk about your project more confidently, knowing you have reliable source materials at your fingertips, both on the web and in hard copy.