The perfect press kit is designed to garner media mention, TV coverage, radio airplay and more. But kits have to be tailored to a certain audience, and sometimes it’s hard to know what to include. What is too much? What’s not enough? What will this particular media outlet think is important? Because your kit is usually going to many different media outlets, it’s important that the kit be adaptable. It should be easy to alter slightly and be tailored to its specific destination.
Providing a Press Kit is just one strategy, and it’s not usually useful alone. Reporters will need to have some prior interest (or at least knowledge) before the kit gets in their hands so that they know how to use the contents. At a minimum, plan on contacting media contacts prior, and ALWAYS after you provide the Press Kit. Be ready to offer additional information, and elaborate on any pitches/stories you think might appeal to them. Generate a variety of story ideas and have more than one appealing approach to share with them!
Some important things to think about when putting together your press kit.
1. What is the overall goal of the Press Kit?
2. Who is the audience? (If you pitching to a radio station for example, who listens to that station?? Because that’s who they will care about…)
3. What do I want to accomplish? Get specific in defining measurable objectives. If you want to garner media attention, how many articles? In how many markets? This is what you want to accomplish in numbers and percentages!
4. Why should members of the local news media care? Make sure you address this question, why will they care about you are pitching??
A Press Kit will always be more successful if you attach it along with other opportunities. For example, offering to do a live interview (this can be you or someone else you work with who would feel comfortable jumping in front of the camera and talking about what this pitch is all about)! This could also include providing the reporter with special opportunities to go behind the scenes, give a special demonstration, let them see what it’s all about from the inside out. This might apply to a speaker giving a conference, being let in the studio for a radio or TV show, etc. This is likely to draw them in and will go a long way in building relationships with media.
What is included?
Remember to keep the packaging generic. Your company’s name/logo and contact is enough. Don’t include photos that will become outdated quickly. You should also keep the packaging consistent from one press kit to the next, only the inside contents should change.
Press release: There might be more than one if you decide to tailor a couple to different markets.
Executive profiles with bios: Tell them a little about the people at your company/brand, make sure they have all the information on these people they would need to do a piece on them.
High resolution photos: Having a strong visual aspect in your press kit is, I think, very important, a huge selling factor.
Cover letter: It’s always idea to do a cover letter to personalize your press kit to that media outlet if it’s possible, and make sure you are addressing it to the right person!
Corporate or marketing materials for your company: Be careful, as I said before, not to include too many extras, but if you have some strong pieces for a company launch or expansion type of pitch than strong marketing materials could be great item.
Positive media quotes: You can include positive press quotes, if the media has already said great things about your brand, show that off! (These quotes might be best included in your press release, or in your marketing materials.)
Business cards/contact information: Your contact should be on multiple pieces, don’t make it hard for them to get in touch with you if they have questions or want to know more!!
Once you are done compiling — go back over everything and take out anything that seems extraneous to your specific messages. You don’t want anything to take away from you clear vision and objectives for this pitch!
Lastly, when you are delivering this press kit, be enthusiastic but avoid being a nuisance. Remember that no matter how hard you work at your pitch, be prepared to face some who are disinterested, possibly annoyed, and unfortunately sometimes rude. Hey… we’re in PR aren’t we? Remember, relationships with media take time!