Impress the Bookers with User Friendly Promo Packets
Andy J - Music Business
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I receive many promotional packets. I don't receive nearly as many as a club owner or promoter does though. As I review the packets, a few main issues strike me—first, the most interesting and important facts are often buried deep within the text. Second, in an attempt to look impressive, the artist includes far too much material reducing the impact of the really "good stuff." And third the material is not well organized. Since your promotional material often serves to introduce your act and create a first impression, it is important to make your first shot count.
With that in mind, I'd like to suggest some helpful tips as you pull out that promotional packet and take a close look at it. In "What to Include In Your Touring Press Kit", I discussed what would be best to send to club bookers, performing arts center bookers and the media. This article I'll look at some specific elements of your marketing materials and help you refine them in order to eliminate excess and accentuate the selling points.
If the review has a photo and it is a live shot, call the paper to see if you can get an original print of the photo. Take the photo to a local printer or copy shop or scan it yourself to create a photo sized to the one in the review and screen it at 85 lines. Paste this over the photo in the review and then when you make photocopies of the whole review page it will be a clean, sharp copy every time. If you use the photo from the paper it will get more and more muddy with each copy you make. If the paper simply used your promo shot, do the same with your original photo and replace the one in the paper. This photo treatment makes a very professional presentation. You can also make a PDF of the entire page once it's cut and pasted.
One other issue to be mindful of when including reviews is, to be sure the print is readable. You are asking a great deal of the reader to spend time looking through a whole review. If the print is fading or blurring, they won't read it. If they aren't able to read it, why bother including it. If it is a great review but you can't read it, consider resetting the type and making a PDF for future downloads or emails. Be kind to your intended reader and do yourself a favor by offering impressive presentation of materials.
Finally, You don't need to include too many reviews. Choose the best one or two and keep them current. If you have performance reviews and recording reviews, choose the best two of each. Keep in mind, the reader will be less likely to read through all the articles that you include, so save your printing and shipping money. A stack of reviews and articles may seem impressive to you, when in reality it is overwhelming to the recipient.
Quality rather than quantity will often leave a better impression on the recipient of a promotional packet. When your packet is well organized and user-friendly, the booker can get to the information more easily. They appreciate an artist that respects their time by sending a packet that doesn't demand lots of it. The less time it takes to read useful, accessible, pertinent information, the more time they can spend booking and promoting your act. Happy marketing!
Jeri Goldstein is the author of, How To Be Your Own Booking Agent The Musician's & Performing Artist's Guide To Successful Touring 2nd Edition UPDATED. She had been an agent and artist's manager for 20 years. Currently she consults with artists, agents and managers through her consultation program Manager-In-A-Box and presents The Performing Biz, seminars and workshops at conferences, universities, for arts councils and to organizations. Jeri has released a 3-hour seminar on CD-ROM, Marketing Your Act. The Seminar is set up in 5 modules with information about Marketing, Creating Effective Promotional Materials, How To Access the Media, A Marketing Template and Niche Marketing. No expensive conferences to attend-learn at your convenience to boost your career. Her book, CD-ROM and information about her other programs are available at are available at Performingbiz.com or phone (434) 591-1335 or email Jeri.
* If you would like to reprint any of these articles, please contact Jeri Goldstein for permission.