One of the first things I say to my PR coaching clients, especially at the early stages of their business journey, is to be prepared for the unexpected. Investing time into making sure you have all your brand assets together and ready to support any PR outreach activities is crucial. Once you start rolling out a PR strategy, you need to be prepared, and many business owners simply aren't. Something as simple as not having the right images available to send to a journalist, can potentially lose you a major media opportunity.
The easiest way to avoid this scenario is to make sure you have a press kit ready and waiting to send out to journalists. A press kit is a digital compilation of all the key things relating to you and your business. From your founder story, to images and product or service info, it outlines the who, what, when, why, where and how, and its purpose is to introduce your company's vision and values to the media.
Having your press kit organised, means you are always ready for incoming media opportunities and that includes everything from potential speaking engagements and events to podcast interviews. There are so many media opportunities for small businesses that it really does pay to be prepared.
Your press kit should contain information about your company and team including brand assets like your logo and images. Depending on your company you may also want to add a video on how your product works. Press kits are also good sources for potential investors and partners. If you’re looking to secure investment with your first kit, remember that first impressions count.
In putting together your press kit, you want to think about giving the media as much info to work with as possible, and think about what is going to grab their attention, so you can tailor your content accordingly. Make sure you highlight coverable/newsworthy topics for them, introducing whatever it is that is different about your approach and the problems your company is solving through its products or services. In a nutshell you want to appear so interesting to the journalist, that they can immediately see lots of potential stories coming through from your brand, company philosophy, product or service and they can clearly see how customers are getting their needs met through what you offer.
Journalists are busy people and rarely have time to chase for information and images, so the more you can do to support them to pull their story together the better. Having an amazing press kit doesn’t guarantee press for your business, but it does make it that little bit easier. When you’re reaching out to your target publications, you will always have your press kit to refer to and share with journalists, rather than rushing around trying to find the right images and documents.
The easiest place to save and share your press kit is in an online folder such as Dropbox or Google Drive. This way, if a journalist requests your press kit you can send a link for them to download the relevant folder, rather than trying to send as email attachments.
And a final note.. remember that having a press kit is a great way to start building relationships with target journalists and bloggers. Focus on offering value, expert comment and amazing content. When you do some of the work for journalists up front, they’ll be more receptive to your pitches in the future and it also great for building both your business and personal brand.
What you put in your press kit depends on your business and what you have to work with, but here are 10 essentials that I recommend
10 Essentials for your Press Kit
1. Bio — Founders and co-founders should have a one-page bio. Include relevant information that establishes their (or your) credibility.
2. Professional Headshots - Founders or other important company figures. Make sure images are high res jpegs with a dpi of 300.
3. Products/Services — Include a one-pager on each of your products and services, listing the features/benefits and answering the questions that someone might ask about what you sell.
4. Your Story & Company History — What is your company’s history? share your story about how your business came to be and why as a founder you’re doing what you’re doing. What makes your business unique and interesting? Share successes and challenges that have helped the company get where it is today.
5. Story Ideas — I recommend having 5 signature topics you can talk about which not only relate to your business but the wider industry you are operating in. What is happening in your industry at the moment and how does your product or service meet a demand or solve a problem? You just need to show the journalist how you can help and bring value in terms of what you can offer via content/expert comment.
6. Media Coverage– Include links to media coverage you have gained already. This gives the journalist additional information in terms of what has been written about you previously and the type of story and relevant angles. If you haven’t received previous media coverage, you can include copies of your most recent press releases and links to other things like speaking engagements if you have them.
7. Social Media Info - Include details of the social platforms you are present on
8. Product Images - Hi res images of your product or screen shots if it’s an app or web product.
9. Company Logo- Various versions of the company logo, including a print-quality version (around 1MB is ideal).
10. Contact Info: Make it easy for a journalist to contact yourself or the right person in your team to handle a media enquiry. Phone and email is essential, but you can also include social media info.
Want to find out more about my press kit creation and other services, get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org