The Traditional Way To A Publisher

On the road to finding a reputable publisher, there are steps that must be taken in order to reach those reputable publishers. First lets state that the entertainment industry is all about the connections you have and what you know. As a rookie music composer ready to attempt at finding opportunities in the music industry, a certain connection is needed to mediate between the publisher and us. Most production companies will instantly refuse to review unsolicited works, which most likely will be thrown in the trash once received. Getting to the first step at finding a publisher, find a reputable agent that best thrives in your field of choice and at your skill level. An agent is the go between that can successfully solicit works to production companies. Agents have those vital connections to the industry that is needed to get to that next level.

When researching for that special agent in your life, there are many resources that can be used, such as agent directories and websites like the National Music Publishers Association. Once you get a list of agents that relates to your skill level and career focus. It is time to begin sending out query letters.  First, lets understand that each agent has set in place certain guidelines that must be followed before attempting to make contact. Guidelines such as how much of a following you may have, or having works already thriving and in rotation throughout the industry, that’s just naming a few.

Now that it is understood what requirements are needed to send out a query letter, lets understand what a query letter is. A query letter is a single page cover letter, introducing a little about yourself, your work and your skill, That is it. A query letter consists of two to three concise paragraphs, the hook/sizzle, a small summary bio, and thankfulness. Please do not stray from this path or you may risk losing the agents interest. Once you nab that special agent in your life, it is time to seek out a publisher. In order to seek out a publisher, it is now time to create an EPK or a physical press kit. Just as a side note an agents commission ranges between 10% - 20% commission on gross revenue made. A press kit is simply an information packet about a business or product. A press kit is something like a resume for your company. This information will address questions from the media, investors, potential clients and anyone else who may need it.

What is in a press kit, lets break down what a press kit consists of:

A cover letter is something like a pitch letter, which represents the first impression the reader will get from reading it. In this instance, lets think of the cover letter as the query letter that has already been sent out.

The cover page of the press kit is a summary of a short introduction of you or your band and displays what your career focus is.

The bio speaks for its self; it’s a biography, which is a comprehensive explanation and account of your life and career as an entertainer.

Including a band photo is as serious as the biography, a professional photo of you as an entertainer displays how you conduct your self as an industry professional and places a face to the bio.

An equipment page is needed to display the equipment you use for your career focus and when you perform live.

Booking information is crucial because any interested potential clients will need a detailed way of contacting you; it is good to have multiple means of contact.

A 3 to 4 song demo of your best material is needed to showcase to venues and potential clients to get an idea on your skills and music.

Testimonials are used to show venues and clients what you have done and the people who notice your work. This section can consist of news clippings, reviews and notable mentions.

Business cards are also self-explanatory, which is another means of contact and a way to easily distribute your calling card to anyone of interest.

All of this content once gathered should be complied together in a professional folder layout and placed in a professional envelope. Once your press kit is ready for the masses, it is time to begin sending out your press kit.



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