Friday, May 30, 2014

Book Trailers: Boost or Bust? by Diana Green

Opinions on book trailers vary. Some people tell you they're a waste of time, while others say they are "a must" for savvy authors. In my opinion, the success of book trailers depends on the quality of their design and also on the specific audience. Some people just aren't interested in watching them.

Many others, (myself included), love the combination of images, music, and text. The final product can draw viewers in, intriguing them with a multimedia experience of the story. Some authors have found that people who watch their trailer are more likely to buy the book vs those who have only read the blurb. It hooks them in a way cover copy can’t, especially those individuals who are more visual and auditory in their focus.
So, how do you go about making a good book trailer?

Between one and two minutes is usually the best length. That's long enough to catch the reader's interest, but not long enough to bore them. Pacing matters. If the text and images fly by too fast, the audience won't be able to take them in. On the other hand, having things move too slowly can make the production drag.
These decisions will depend partly on the kind of a story you're showcasing. Is it suspenseful, sweet, dramatic, or adrenaline-pumping? Pace your trailer accordingly. Also, pick music that fits the theme and setting. Be wary of soundtracks with lyrics. They can work, but often the words are distracting and compete with the text of your trailer.

You must own the rights (or have permission to use) any music or images in your trailer. There are many excellent resources for finding both. Royalty free stock image sites and royalty free music sites offer a tremendous variety, and they are a lot of fun to explore. Here are some links which you might find helpful. I-stock photos, deposit photos, big-stock photos, 300 monks music, pond 5 music.

Finally, make sure your text is clearly readable, and be sure to include information about where the book can be purchased. I generally place my website address at the end, so it will be the last thing viewers see. Hopefully that means it sticks in their minds.

You may be wondering how to put all this into action. Animoto is a fantastic tool for trailer creation. Thirty second videos are free, or you can pay $30 for an entire year of making longer videos. The process is simple and user-friendly, ending with a professional quality product. You can also use video editing software that may be on your computer.

Book trailers are a great addition to your website. They can also be distributed through You Tube, Facebook, and various book promotion sites, or provide links to them from blog posts. Here are three sample book trailers, all created with Animoto, showing what a variety of styles can be achieved.  SAMPLE TRAILER ONE, SAMPLE TRAILER TWO, and SAMPLE TRAILER THREE.

A world of possibilities opens up with book trailers. It's a unique way to get readers excited about your books, and (even better) it's fun. If you haven't tried it yet...jump in. The water is fine!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Diana Green is a new author to The Wild Rose Press. Her fairy rose novel, Dragon Wife, will release August 15th. For more information about the Dragon Clan Trilogy and Diana’s other books, please visit


Ashantay said...

Diana, you have a lovely web site and I enjoyed the drama in your trailers. I rarely read shifter stories, but your trailer drew me in. Well done!

Marlow Kelly said...

Thanks Diana, great blog. I think I'll take the information you gave me and work on my trailer today.

Marlow Kelly said...

Thanks Diana, great blog. I think I'll take the information you gave me and work on my trailer today.

Unknown said...

I appreciate your feedback. Thanks for taking the time to comment!