A cheap and effective way to self-promote indie books
Indie writers are often so focused on creating their books that they forget what the main reason was for writing it: To sell and make an income from writing! And sales won’t come without promoting those books. And even if they do make an effort on promotion, it may just be the minimal – an ad in the local news paper, a blog or a website listing.
Savvy indie writers are however taking their promos to new heights using Book Trailers. Since many readers first hear about (or find) their reading materials online, Book Trailers are becoming increasingly popular when giving readers their first taste of a book.
Here’s how you too can benefit from this technique.
Book Trailer Intro
Book Trailers are a low-cost, low-effort way to grab the attention of your audience by making a powerful first impression on them about your book. Using exciting animation, well scripted text and intelligent sequencing, you can create stunning effects that tell the viewers what your book is all about. And just like movie trailers that make you want to watch more, a well crafted Book Trailer can bring your book to life and make viewers want to go out and buy it.
- Pictures say a 1000 words: A great Book Trailer should start off with some great pictures of the book. Even if you don’t have the final cover designed yet, you can produce graphical images about scenes and events from the book to create a pictorial collage for your readers.
- Sharing: That’s the end goal: Remember, your Book Trailer isn’t just for you, it’s meant to be shared. High-def images and pictures might make it time-consuming to share, download and view. 72-DPI quality (640 x 480) should be good enough. Depending on who your audience is, you may share your Book Trailers online at sites like YouTube, BookTrailersForReaders, SchoolTube or other appropriate sites.
- Craft your words carefully: Remember, this is a Book Trailer, and not an excerpt! Even though you may be tempted to display large amounts of text from your favorite chapter/scene, Book Trailers aren’t the medium to do so. You must be concise and succinct in your script.
- Voice over can win over: A nice, strong and soothing voice, either reading or narrating the script, can be a huge game changer for your Book Trailer. You can win over lots of fans by asking a friend or family member with a great voice to provide you voice-over support.
- Music that charms and intrigues: Select an appropriate sound track (even if it’s just snippets) to act as a backdrop for your animations and narrations. Viewers can be intrigued with the right sound effects, even enticing them to buy and read the book. Remember though, you may need to follow copyright rules if you are using 3rd party media in your Book Trailers.
The Technology of Book Trailers
If this is your first attempt at creating a Book Trailer, don’t be alarmed! There is technology that can be a great help in bringing your books to life. Here are a few tools to help you get started:
- Microsoft PowerPoint: Many of you may be familiar with this ubiquitous piece of software. You can actually create your PPT files with animation, pictures, voice over and slide transitions, and then quickly turn your presentation into a video-based Book Trailer.
- Prezi: If you are looking for a great free tool to create your Book Trailers, try the free version of Prezi. It’ll give you everything you need to get started with producing animation-rich presentations and slide shows online.
- Animoto: This is yet another great video animation tool that lets you produce powerful 30-second animated book trailers for free. Paid versions with additional features are available, but for novice Indie Writers out to do their first online promo, starting with the free version is a great idea.
- PhotoShow: If you excel at photography and have a collage of photos of your book available, then this might be a great tool for you to create your Book Trailer. Use your photos to create a spell binding story about your book, and annotate it with any video content too.
The best thing about these tools is that you don’t need to be a tech-wiz to learn them and immediately start producing stunning Book Trailers.
Why Book Trailers?
For the newer generation of book readers, dropping by a book store and browsing through book shelves for a nice book is not an option. Book Trailers are a great way for that demographic of readers to “sample” before buying.
Indie writers who have Facebook, Twitter or Instagram accounts can very easily link to or publish their Book Trailer links for their followers to view. That way, even if the trailer is relatively large, viewers won’t be frustrated from a large email attachment in their in-boxes. Just a simple click to a link can get them viewing your trailer.
With limited budgets at their disposal, Indie Writers must leverage every tool they can to give them a competitive edge in promoting their works. Book Trailers is just such a tool!
Not every Indie Writer may feel comfortable taking on a Book Trailer project. There are a lot of experienced animation specialists and creative designers online, they can take even the most “normal” book and tempt readers into buying it with some creative Book Trailers.