So, you have (or represent) a band or you’re musically inclined. Congratulations! You’re officially the president of the Cool Kids Club (and no, we didn’t just make that up…). But, how exactly do you write a music press release without a music publicist so that you can share your awesomeness with the world? Here’s the thing: having personal connections to the music industry is clearly the easiest way. However, not everyone is afforded that luxury. Read on to learn how to successfully write a music press release.
1. Make it easy to view.
Turns out, you’re not the only person sending a music press release to your publication of choice! Make sure your press release is easily accessible. If a journalist has to search the ends of the Internet to figure out how to access your press release, it’s probably not going to be opened.
2. Make sure it’s press release worthy!
This tip is common sense. No outlet is going to publish a press release about an album that was released two years ago. Keep it current, interesting and relevant! Think from the journalists’ point of view: is their audience going to be interested in this press release?
3. Keep it short.
We get it. You’re excited about your music press release! However, that doesn’t mean you need to cram every little detail about your upcoming event in the press release. Just boil it down to the important stuff.
4. Use an attention grabbing subject line.
Attention, attention! If you want journalists to pick your press release out of all of the press releases they receive daily, you’re going to have to capture their attention right from the very beginning! Just make sure your subject clearly conveys what your press release is going to be about.
5. Don’t write in first person.
If you’re a music publicist, this tip is probably irrelevant to you. However, if you’re a part of the DIY PR crowd (hey! No judging here!), it can come across as unprofessional if your music press release is addressed in the first person. Relay the information in your press release as if you’re an outsider referring to yourself. A press release is not a feature story. It’s simply a way to tell the public about an exciting event or story.
6. Use a YouTube or Soundcloud link.
Attachments are inconvenient and it can’t be stressed enough that your press release needs to be as convenient as possible for the journalist to view! Of course you want your music shared. However, it needs to be done the right way. In your press release, include a link to your music on Soundcloud or YouTube. This is an easier way for a journalist to listen to your music without having to download anything.
7. Make it pretty but not… complicated.
If you want to add one picture of your album to the press release, that’s perfectly fine and a great way to add a visual element to your press release. Just don’t over decorate the press release with thousands of images of your band or event. Again, press releases are a way to distribute information. They don’t need to be flashy.
8. Promote yourself!
Take advantage of having a journalist’s attention (even if it’s only for a brief period of time!)! Promote your band or your client’s band in your press release by providing links to your social media channels, website, and any other relevant contact information.
9. Keep the key information in the beginning.
Just because a journalist opened your press release doesn’t mean they want to scroll all the way to the bottom of it to find the most important information. Make sure that all the key information is at the beginning of your music press release.
10. Personalize it.
You’ll want your music press release to be memorable! Adding a personal touch is the perfect way to do that. You don’t need to get extremely fancy when personalizing your press release. A brief, customized message that lets the journalist know you’re emailing them personally is more than enough.
11. Proofread it.
Nothing is more unprofessional than a press release full of grammatical errors. Always proofread! Then, proofread again. Just to be sure.
12. Make sure it’s a PDF.
PDFs are the most professional way to present press releases. They’re also not editable so you can be sure that your information is safe and secure.
13. Don’t assume you’ll get a response.
Just because you haven’t received an email back from a journalist doesn’t mean that they haven’t opened your music press release. Oftentimes, a journalist will just post your press release word-from-word without letting you know. This is because journalists are busy and are most likely doing this en masse with all the press releases they receive!
14. Be aware of timing.
If you’re letting an outlet know about your band’s upcoming tour, you probably don’t want them to post the news a month before the tour begins. You’ll want to give their audience some time to digest the information and make arrangements to show up to your event! This means being prepared to send your press releases out way in advance. A journalist might not review your press release for some time.
15. Research the publication.
Doing a little bit of research can save you a lot of time. Is there a specific way they want your press release formatted? Does the publication you’re submitting to focus on a certain genre (hint: don’t submit a press release for a punk rock band to a country music publication!). It may require a bit of extra time, but doing your research on publications can help you become more prepared when writing a music press release.
If you follow these 15 tips and tricks to writing a music press release, you’ll be a press release expert in no time without a music publicist! Just don’t forget to thank Otter PR when you’re famous!