A basic media kit. Photo courtesy of BigDogBoutique.com.
KAREN HOCHMAN, Editorial Director of THE NIBBLE, sees more than 1,000 media kits a year. She wishes she could share a copy of these best practices to some of their creators.
Updated February 2009
Media Kit Components
Page 4: CD-ROMs
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CDs can be a wonderful medium for journalists: they’re much easier to store than a fat press kit and they can hold lots of usable images. But many journalists still like the convenience of reviewing a pile of material without being glued to a computer. Understand your audience: we’re food and lifestyle writers, not the digerati press. While CDs have their good points, they are also more time-consuming to load, open and read than flipping through paper information.
Avoid these two common mistakes when handing CDs to the press:
- Label your CDs. A surprising number of unlabeled CDs are distributed, requiring journalists to insert them just to know what’s on them. Or they just say “Winter 2006 Line”—but don’t identify whose. You can’t toss an unlabeled CD into a folder and assume it will stay together with your other material—things separate easily. Be sure to label your CD-ROMs at a minimum with your company name; see other wish-list information below.
- It’s easy to create a label. Purchase CD-ROM labels at any stationer and create labels with your company logo, name, tag line, positioning statement (the same information as on the press kit cover), plus URL. Also helpful are a contact person (or at least the general phone number and e-mail), date and contents of the CD. At a minimum, stick any kind of label (e.g., a file folder label) with your company and URL onto it. If you don’t have time for labels, write your company name and URL with a Sharpie. Don’t think this hand-written solution looks worse than leaving the CD unlabeled: it is much more professional than having no label at all. (We are actually surprised at how many Sharpie-labeled CDs there are, given the labor to hand-write versus the ease of, and better appearance gained from, printing out a sheet of labels on the computer.)
- Use CDs appropriately. We receive a large number of CDs that contain only a simple press release. This is not a good use of the CD medium, the sender’s time and money, or the journalist’s time to load and open the CD.
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