Book trailers have become a staple in the publishing industry. Unfortunately they can costs hundreds or even thousands of dollars (for only 1 minute of video!). Do you really need a book trailer to promote your book? Where can you find high quality, low cost video production? What do you do with a book trailer once you’ve got one? Here are some tips.
1) Making the trailer. There are two ways to go. One is high quality, professionalism. Like a movie trailer from WB. These can be pretty expensive but stand out from the majority of book trailers (which are poorly done on windows movie maker). The other option is to keep it simple; video yourself talking about your book. It’s pretty easy. Don’t use special effects or text or anything.
If you can afford to pay at least a couple hundred bucks, you may want option one (I chose that one, more on that later). But option 2 can work. Several of the winners of the 2010 Moby Awards (given to the best and worst book trailers of the year) were spoofs, or somehow clever, witty responses to the whole concept of book marketing.
With a great idea, your book trailer could become popular (the trick is not to sell your book at all, but do something interesting, related to the theme or plot). Watch a couple hundred, and the examples from the Moby Awards, to get a clear idea of what you want and what you’re going to need to make it.
2) What to do with it? Here’s what I did: I paid a video submission site $100 to post my video all over the internet. Why it didn’t work: people looking for content won’t click through to a video site. And now, when people search for my book’s subject instead of finding my book they find dozens of video sites with repeat content. Not so great. Focus on YouTube. Once you’ve got it up on YouTube, you can add it to your website, share it with your friends and fans, and even post it on your amazon.com page (they allow customers to post a video review – upload your trailer! At the very least, upload a video of you holding and flipping through the book, so that they can see the details and quality.) How to get it seen: if you don’t use YouTube much, don’t have many friends or contacts, then your video won’t ever come up in searches. You’ll be invisible. Here’s a trick: Post your video as a “video response” (find it under the comments) to other videos in your topic. Be respectful: After you post your trailer as a response, send a polite message to the video’s uploader saying “Hope it’s OK I posted a video response. If you’d like to see the book you can get a free review copy here (online review copy).” Also friend/subscribe to them. Otherwise they might see it as spam and block your video.
Now, whenever anybody watches those other videos, your “video response” will come up right under the main video!
You can also submit your video for the 2011 Moby Awards – they’re accepting entries now for $5. http://www.mobyawards.com/ You want to either win or lose big. I’ve seen an author promoting his book as “Winner of the Moby Awards” when his book trailer won the “Least Likely to Sell Books” category.
Where to get quality cheap book trailer video production?
I used Elance and Freelancer to get bids from qualified professionals for a 1 minute book trailer for under $250. After checking hundreds, the following are the ones I liked best (3dtree did my book trailer, which is awesome).
If you’re looking for cheap, professional book trailer design and production services I recommend checking out the following websites to find a style you like, and then contact them saying what you need (under 1minute book trailer, around $250). These are not affiliate links, there’s no profit for me in recommending them, I just consider them to be an excellent resource for self-published authors.
Lowest Price (Less than $150!):
Derek Murphy is the author of Jesus Potter Harry Christ.
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About Derek Murphy
Derek Murphy - author of "Jesus Potter Harry Christ" - is a writer and artist from Portland, Oregon, whose interest in Christian history began as a theology student on the Mediterranean island of Malta. His passion for religious history and existential realization has led him to the ancient megaliths of Europe, the pyramids of Egypt, the glaciers of the southern tip of Argentina, the catacombs of Rome, and the ruins of Jordan, Cambodia and Thailand. He’s now in Taiwan finishing his PhD in Comparative Literature and working on his second book.