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3 Ways To Make Your Media Kit Rock

For more on media kits, check out Start Your Media Kit Today: Mini Workbook.

Anytime you request an interview, you use it.
Anytime you contact a blogger, you use it.
Anytime you solicit a review, you use it.
Anytime you create an online dating profile, you use it.

Okay, maybe that last one was a stretch…but the first three and a long list of others are all situations in which you will need an updated, well designed, engaging media kit. When properly executed, your media kit should work for you like a hired Hollywood publicist, promoting you and your books. It should leave potential interviewers, reviewers, and bloggers impressed by and interested in your work.

So the question is, does your media kit get the job done?

If the answer is no, you’re not alone. Upon conducting an honest review of their media kits, most authors find that their promotional package is not actually promoting them very well. Why? Well, there are a number of reasons, but in most cases we authors struggle to answer two critical questions about our media kits:

1. What in the world do I put in it?

2. How am I supposed to use it?

 

Does that strike a familiar chord with you? If so, I have good news. By the end of this blog post you will have the answers to both of those questions and access to a detailed sample of what a good media kit looks like, which will put you well on your way to creating a successful media kit.

So let’s get down to it. Here are Duolit’s three easy steps for building a media kit that rocks!

Step One: Include the right items.

Every media kit should include the following itemsI’m going to repeat that, because I think it bears repeating — EVERY MEDIA KIT should include the following items:

  • Target Market Information
  • Book Summary
  • Press Release
  • Book Reviews
  • Short (emphasis on SHORT) author bio
  • High Resolution Book Cover
  • High Resolution Author Headshot
  • Author Contact Information (you’d be surprised how often this is overlooked!)

You can also include an author Q&A, overall marketing goals and if your book is non-fiction, it’s recommended that you add a complete outline of your book and an overview of your research.

Step Two: Keep it updated.

Once you have put together your media kit with the above items, you must keep it updated! Make time in your busy schedule to look over it often (at least once a month for the first six months or so after your book launch). Update it more often if you have exciting news to share. For example, if you get a new review from a popular blogger, add it to your media kit right away. If your eBook sales soar, write a new press release. If you receive an award or accolade for your work, by all means add it to the credentials in your bio.

Essentially, if your media kit is doing its job, you should be updating it all the time!

Step Three: Have it ready.

I’m a big fan of Timothy Olyphant’s character Raylan Givens in the FX show Justified, which sadly concluded its third season last night, leaving my life devoid of gun-slinging Kentucky lawmen for the foreseeable future. Among Raylan’s many talents, being ready to quick-draw on an armed suspect is at the top of the list. Just like Raylan, you should be ready to draw out your media kit on a moment’s notice. That means not only having a digital version prepared to attach in an email, but a printed version that can be dropped in the mail.

One other quick note on the  mailed media kit: Though it probably won’t happen often, if you do get a request for a printed media kit, be sure that you print it on a good printer, on good paper, print a nice label and use a full size envelope so you don’t have to fold anything. Think of sending out your  media kit like sending out a resume for a job. You want to come across as professional as possible, so spring for printing at your local Staples or Office Max and put your best foot forward.

There you have it! All you need to know to get started on your rock star media kit! What are you waiting for? Go!

Discussion: What’s in your media kit?

Did we leave anything out? Do you have some advice for other authors based on your experience with media kits? Are you a reviewer or blogger who receives media kits? If so, what do you look for when you review someone’s media kit?

 

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  • http://twitter.com/KellyHitchcock Kelly Hitchcock

    Thanks for this! I’ve been completely at a loss for how to put this together!

    • http://www.selfpublishingteam.com/ Shannon @ Duolit

      You’re welcome Kelly! It’s not easy to get it started, but once you’ve got it put together it’s pretty easy to maintain and a great tool to have!

  • http://sylviahubbard.com Sylvia Hubbard

    oh this was too awesome. thank you so much!! I always love yr website! 

    • http://www.selfpublishingteam.com/ Shannon @ Duolit

      Thanks! So glad this was a helpful post :-)

  • Kirsten_weiss2001

    I’m already an Indie Ninja – where can I find the media kit template you mentioned?

    • http://www.selfpublishingteam.com/ Shannon @ Duolit

      Hi Kirsten! I am working on getting it added to the Indie Ninja resources ASAP. I’m a one man band this week since Toni just had her baby and I’m having a tough time filling her shoes! I will get it added so when you’re logged in as a ninja you should be able to download it.

    • http://www.selfpublishingteam.com/ Shannon @ Duolit

      Hey Kirsten, I’ve got an update! The media kit sample is available now. Go to 
      http://supporters.selfpublishingteam.com/ and log-in, it’s under Yearly Perks in the Freebies section. Let me know if you have any problems. Thanks! :-)

  • John Betcher

    Very nice checklist, Ladies. I’m certain it will help many authors to present themselves in a more professional manner. Thanks for all your good work on behalf of indie authors.

    Cheers!

    John

    • http://selfpublishingteam.com/ Toni @ Duolit

      So glad you enjoyed it, John. Thanks for your support, as always :-)

  • http://www.facebook.com/agent139 Jamie Lee

    The question of where to send it where it will actually get looked at (within relevant target market and all) is more of a pressing one in my experience. 

    • http://selfpublishingteam.com/ Toni @ Duolit

      Very true, Jamie. That’s a whole ‘nother can of worms that we might just have to take a look at in an upcoming post!

  • http://twitter.com/RuthMadison82 Ruth Madison

    I also have a list of websites where I’ve been interviewed and a video clip (though I want to update that as it was the first video I did and I don’t think it shows what I want it to show, i.e., that I am good in front of the camera!)

  • Linda Bloodworth

    What if you are writing under a pen name?

  • Allen James

    Thanks again ladies. I put one together and am impressed myself… (difficult to do). Allen James