STIMULATING ORGANIZATIONAL SUCCESS (S.O.S.) ::
The Press Kit
Press kits provide useful background information for members of the press writing previews or reviews of your arts or cultural event. A press kit should be organized in a folder and generally includes:
Organization Information (from front to back on the left side of the folder)
- Mission statement
- Brief organizational history
- Organizational brochure
- Feature articles on the organization or lead staff
- Board list
- Business card for media contact
Specific Event Information (from front to back on the right side of the folder)
- Press release for the event
- Photos or artwork related to the event
- Event postcard or flyer
- Event program
- Artists' bios, if not in the program
- Preview articles about the event
Note: Do not include reviews of the event or previous events in the press packet. Some reviewers have pet peeves about being influenced by the opinions of others.
The Press Release
Press releases inform the media about your event and can inspire the media to publish a calendar listing or even cover the event. Try to let the media know what makes your event unique or relevant, why they should cover your event. Be genuine. Exaggeration or inaccuracy will only hurt your chances of being a reliable media source. The more a press release reads like an actual news article, the better. Many smaller publications love releases they can print verbatim. The following are some basic tips for putting together a press release. Click here for a description and example of the anatomy of a press release.
- Press releases should look professional and be easy to read. Always type, double-space, and spell-check your releases.
- Make sure the organization's name, address, Web site, and contact information is visible.
- Include the media contact's name, direct phone line, and e-mail address near the top of the first page.
- Also include a "pull date" (the last date of the event) near the top of the first page.
- Include a headline that summarizes the event and invites people to read the details. This is usually in all caps or bolded.
- Use the inverted triangle format for the body of the press release. All the most pertinent information should be included in the first paragraph - the five W's. Who is presenting What, Where, and When? Why should people attend? Be sure and include information on how people can attend or buy tickets, including locations of ticket venues or Web site, e-mail and/or box office phone line information.
- Additional paragraphs can provide more descriptive information about the event, artists involved, and quotes.
- Use your mission statement or general description of the organization at the end of the press release.
- If the press release is longer than one page, write "-More-" at the bottom of each page. Then at the end of the last page, include "# # #" to indicate the end of the release.
Seattle Youth Symphony.
Photo: Colleen Boyce.