A press kit, often referred to as a media kit in business environments, is a pre-packaged set of promotional materials that provide information about a person, company, organization or cause and which is distributed to members of the media for promotional use. Press kits are often distributed to announce a release or for a news conference.
Traditionally the term, "press kit", referred to a set of documents, photographs and other relevant materials packaged together, and designed to be sent to a newspaper or magazine as part of an organisations Public relations or promotional program. Recently, as print media circulation and readership levels have been declining, marketing and PR people have begun using the broader term, "media kit", so that it now refers to any promotional material distributed to any media outlet.
A PR media kit should not be confused with an advertising media kit developed by a newspaper or magazine for distribution to prospective advertisers. Advertising media kits typically consist of documents outlining the print media's editorial philosophy, detailed profiles of the medium's audience, a rate-card and information about forthcoming special features.
Press kits are typically used for:
There is no universal guide to the elements that should be included in a press kit or media kit, but the following are common components:
Musicians, including orchestras, bands and choral groups use media kits when launching a new album or when performing at a special event. Band press kits often have their own unique set of components, including:
An electronic press kit (EPK) is a press kit equivalent in electronic form. An EPK usually takes the form of a website or e-mail, though they are also known to exist in CD and DVD form. The first known EPK, as we know it today, premiered live on the web on January 8, 1995, and was invented and given the exact name electronic press kit or EPK by Andre Gray, the inventor of online music sales certifications and winner of The Johannes Gutenberg Inventor Prize. Gray's EPK featured a bio, audio clips, videos, photos, press, set list, basic technical requirements, and a calendar and featured R&B singer and songwriter Aaron Hall as the first artist ever to have an EPK created on their behalf.
Many companies make their electronic press kits available via the corporate website, where kits are offered in PDF format. An electronic press kit can be provided in any of the following formats:
The contents of an EPK media kit are similar to other types of media kit, but are likely to include a range of audio-visual material. Decisions about what to include in the EPK media kit will depend on the industry and target audience. As a general guide, an EPK in the music industry might contain the following: