How to Build & What to Include in Your EPK [Electronic Press Kit]
DJing is something very unique to think of as a potential career path. It’s an art form and a creative outlet, but also can be a full-time profession for many individuals. Like any other creative profession, it can take hours upon hours of practice to get right. In the DJ industry, the title for DJs that are starting out are usually called ‘bedroom DJs’.
After about a year or two of honing in on a unique style, building skills like beat-matching, and getting a solid gear setup, bedroom DJs are ready to transition towards a more professional realm of DJing. This means getting booked and more paid gigs. However, this is where many bedroom DJs get lost and demotivate themselves. Tons of questions arise when it comes to self-promotion. Where do you start? Who do you talk to? What do you need?
A key promotional item all DJs need nowadays is the EPK.
BPM Supreme is here to help the uninformed in building a solid Electronic Press Kit…but first…!
WHAT EXACTLY IS AN EPK [electronic press kit]?
First and foremost, if you don’t know what an EPK is, it’s just a container of [digital] materials. The items in an EPK are traditionally:
- 1 DJ Bio (Read below for what to include in your DJ Bio)
- 5-10 High-Resolution Photos (promotional photos, logos)
- 2-3 Videos (Clean, pixel-free video content of you playing a set)
- 1-3 Mixes
- 4-5 Links to media (If available, outside sources that feature you)
WHY HAVE AN EPK? WHAT’S ITS PURPOSE?
Put simply, electronic press kits will help you, as a DJ, get booked at venues, weddings, or other events that require a “resume” or portfolio. However, it can also provide for more intended or unintended results, like getting publishers to review your mixes, get written about in articles, or get your music promoted on podcasts and Internet radio stations. It’s also advisable to have this kit on your website in a Press section as well, so that publishers or bloggers can easily find high-res photos and videos to use when writing a feature on you once you get super famous.
What to include in your DJ BIO:
Make sure to keep your BIO factual and don’t over-exaggerate your accomplishments. Exaggerating or flat our lying about your experience might make you might look more foolish than anything.
- Your DJ name
- Any residencies you have currently or in the past
- Your style/sound/genres
- Major artists you played with
What Photos to Include in your EPK:
Photos are extremely important. Hire a professional photographer, or if you’re strapped on cash, ask a photographer friend to take a semi-professional photo shoot of you. Get a clean haircut, wear nice clothes, just look your best. After all, these photos can potentially one day be featured on a popular publisher’s website.
- 5-10 photos. Anything more is pushing it.
- High-res logos
- Any other image assets the press can potentially use.
- A whole image photo gallery containing 30 pictures.
- Don’t overdo it. 5-10 images should be enough
- Low-res – pixelated image
What about Videos in your EPK?
Like photos, videos are really important. They will essentially be proof of your skills as a DJ. With audio mixes, it’s easier these days to cheat sound levels and quantize beats with the availability of DAWs and other editing programs. Coupled with your mixes, videos are good backups to prove your DJing skills.
You can also DIY a promo video of yourself, but without a ton of experience it could easily look cheesy.
Creating the ‘perfect’ mix is a crapshoot. Practice, practice, practice your mix. Make it sound almost flawless live. Although it’s true that mostly anyone can make a ‘flawless’ sounding mix with post-edits through DAWs like Ableton, Pro-Tools, and others, you might be able to get more benefits if you do it old-school. Sometimes it’s better to have a mix that sounds imperfect. Since almost everyone’s choosing to post-edit mixes, perfect mixes are starting to sound kind of boring. Make it sound raw and real. But then again, there are a lot of DJs who will disagree and go with post-editing mixes.
In closing, make sure your EPK is something you’d be proud to hand out. Don’t rush it. Make it your own and try to separate yourself from the crowd.
Have more tips or don’t agree with some of the points above? Share your thoughts in the comments. We’d love to hear from you!