One of the tools that marketers have at their disposal is the press kit. Press kits are vital to PR representatives who are announcing a product launch or promoting their company with the press conference. But how do you use a press kit, and what sorts of elements make them up? That’s exactly what we will be exploring in this article to help marketers and PR personnel use them effectively.
What is a Press Kit?
The first thing that must be defined is the press kit itself. A press kit is simply something that is put together to provide information to the press. Most of the time, the press kit is a physical package that is handed out to the press, as opposed to something digital. There are cases in which a press kit would benefit from being wholly digital, and there definitely some good reasons why you should include digital elements in your press kit, but most of the time, the press kit consists of actual paper, printed flyers, brochures and other physical objects. We will be going into the actual elements that you should include in your press kit later on in this article, including both digital and physical elements.
How Are Press Kits Used?
However, the first thing to explore is how press kits are actually used. Press kits are generally used whenever a company is meeting with the press. This could be at a press conference, or could be at any sort of event where the media will be present. These press kits are handed out to the members of the media that are there in order for them to have the information that the company wants them to have. There are a number of benefits to this, as we will get into shortly.
The Benefits of a Press Kit
There are quite a few benefits to using a press kit. For one thing, no matter what the size of your company, press kits will make you look more professional and improve your reputation in the eyes of the media. A professional press kit put you on par with the big corporations that the media deals with often. Second, a press kit allows you to save time when it comes to media inquiries, because the information that they are asking for will likely already be present in a press kit. The press pack is designed to answer common questions and give information that the media requests often. Finally, you do not have to worry about the wrong information getting published if you are able to send out a press kit. If you do not have press kits, and the media requests information, you may not be able to gather in time for their story and they may use other sources that are not as reliable.
Elements That a Press Kit Should Include
Let’s look at some of the elements that a press kit should include. You definitely want to consider including most of these in your press kit, as they are standard elements that most companies provide. You do not have to provide everything, but you should if you can. It should go without saying that all of these elements should be professionally produced as well.
Introductory material: the introductory material will generally tell media representative that is opening the press kit everything that is inside. There should be a table of contents so that they can quickly get to the information that they need. You may also include a letter thanking them for their interest and giving them your public relations contact information in case they have further questions.
Press release: if you are setting up press kits for a particular product launch or press conference, including a press release is a great idea. While you may not need one for a standard press kit that a media representative can request at any time, they are invaluable when it comes to giving information about a specific event or product.
Product and service brochure: you should definitely include a glossy brochure that has been professionally designed and printed showcase your products and services. The more professionally you can present yourself, and the more attractive you can make your products and services, the more positive influence you can have over the media representative receiving the kit.
Product models or samples: if you are able to provide sample products in your media kit – or models of larger products – then you will be able to give reporters an invaluable visual resource that will allow them to become much more familiar with what you do. Not every company can do this obviously, and some may not even have the budget to include or manufacture models, but it is a good thing to include if you can for some products and services.
Corporate fact sheet: a fact sheet is basically a single page or two that provides reporters with all of the accurate factual information about your company that they may need. This ensures that they have the most up-to-date information, including your sales numbers, employees, contact information or other factual information. The fact sheet is one of the most important parts of your press kit, but it should be limited to one page and easily scanned for the information that they need. You may also want to direct them to your website for additional information that is not easily included with the fact sheet.
Company background: you definitely want to give them some background on your company’s they know where you have come from and who you are. This is similar to the about page on your website. You can give them a history of your company, including when and how was founded and how you grew to be who you are today. While your about page should probably be limited to a couple of paragraphs, a company background sheet can fill an entire page. You can even include pictures like images of your company when it first began or ribbon-cutting events that you mention in your background sheet.
Mini-bios of executives: sometimes reporters need information on the people behind your company; that’s why including short, paragraph long executive bios on the key members of your organization is vital. In addition, this allows the media to see you as a group of people rather than a faceless corporate entity. These bios should include a picture of the person that is been professionally taken, what they do at your company and how long they have been there. It should also include some personal information – usually just a sentence long.
Image bank: you probably should include some images as well so that they can use them in their publication. However, providing hardcopy images is not going to do them any good. If you can, you should include high-res images of your logo and other visual information on a flash drive for them to use. If you cannot include a flash drive in every press kit, another option is simply to include an index card letting them know where to find the high-res images for download on your website.
The press kit is a packet of information that you give to media representatives upon request or before you hold a press conference or product launch. This is a physical packet of information that includes various elements that are useful to the media. Press kits are used whenever you have information that you need to give to the media, or when you want to have something on hand that will allow them to request information and get it sent out to them immediately. In some cases, the press kit can be digital.
Press kits allow you to ensure that the media has up-to-date factual information about your company. In addition, a press kit makes you look much more professional. There are a number of different elements that make up a press kit. You can include some or all of them, but you should carefully consider each of the ones listed here.
The elements here include an introductory letter and table of contents, a press release containing information that you want them to have before press conference or product launch, a brochure that details your products and services, product samples or models, of fact sheet that gives them the latest information and figures from your company, a page that explains your company background, biographies of the key people within your organization and either a flash drive that contains high-res images or directions to where they can download those images on the web.