Book Trailer | 5 Tips to See if it’s Worth it

book trailer

Book Trailer – One of the best ways to reach potential readers is through video.  A clean and simple book trailer is the perfect way to generate awareness and sales for your book.  It opens new opportunities to market adds a new level of professionalism to your book.  In today’s market, a self-publisher simply needs one.

Types of Book Trailers

There are two main types of book trailers.  One is an information focused trailer and the other is a scene based trailer.  It’s rather hard to pull off a scene based trailer since most would use premade video footage either paid or free clips.  This can get rather expensive and still not portray exactly what you want or need. 

Often giving a false impression of the book due to the limitations available.  You also must deal with licensing and royalties for footage used.  The result is an expensive, inaccurate and poor looking trailer.  The alternative to scene based trailers is creating it from the ground up.  Hiring actors, set designers and a director.  The budget for such projects is rather high, but the end result is great.

The second type of book trailer is the information focused model.  It looks great and provides potentials readers with what they need to know quickly.  It’s the perfect solution for self-publishers. An information-focused trailer looks fantastic and professional while quickly informing the reader about the book.

Sam, our main book editor, offers trailers and marketing services on their Fiverr page here:

What makes a great trailer?

A great book trailer portrays a professional image and quickly highlights the main features of the book.  It gives you the opportunity to display awards or reviews if you have them.  It features your cover in a brilliant way.  Highlighting features and making it feel so real that the potential readers want to reach out and grab it. 

The trailer should give you a peek inside either to show images, content sample or topics about the book.  You don’t want the trailer to go to long.  Around thirty seconds is the optimal length.  Readers tend to tune out after thirty seconds so you want to make the information new and vibrant every few seconds within that thirty-second window.

If you don’t have any reviews or awards focus on what the book is about. If its fiction, focus on what the target market wants to know.  The elements that would appeal to the genre.  If the book in nonfiction focus on the topics and what the book offers to the reader.

How much are trailers for books?

Book trailers can range from thousands of dollars (when hiring actors and a film crew) to under a hundred dollars.  The goal should be to accurately show your book and in professional quality production.  Informational trailers fit the bill.  On average expect to pay around $50 for a complete thirty-second clip. 

You need a professional animator and graphic designer to put the pieces together with music, attractive text and transitions.  Before you hire a trailer creator, check the previous work portfolio to make sure it’s what you want.

The main thing you really don’t want to skimp on is your branding and book image.  You want high-quality imagery when it comes to your book.  Cheap is easy to spot and shows the reader the author/publisher didn’t put a lot of effort into the book.

Book Trailer
Book Trailer

What to do with a trailer

There are a ton of things you can do with a trailer.  The main thing is that a book trailer opens up a whole new avenue of marketing.  YouTube and other video-centric social media channels are now wide open to attract new readers.

If you have an author website it can sit front and center on your home page.  Statistically, it’s the first thing that will attract a reader to click.  Add it to your listing on Amazon or another supported retailer.  Use it in your marketing and in your blog posts.  Add it to your social media and share it on forums and book-related sites.

There are endless ways to use a book trailer and it opens many more channels to reach new readers.  In today’s market, you simply can’t ignore an unturned stone.

Do trailers help with book sales?

Yes, if it’s professional and accurate.  I always advise against going with a movie or scene based book trailer since it can easily give an unprofessional image and inaccurate description of the book.  Poorly done and it can hurt your sales and brand

An informational trailer provides everything you need and attracts readers.  It’s the perfect platform to show off your publication reviews (or customer reviews) and awards you have.

A trailer shows you are investing in and stand behind your book.  It’s a strong image to show to potential readers.  It opens a whole new avenue of reaching clients and is the preferred way for many to learn about new books.

Self-publishers serious about pushing their book would do well investing in a trailer. 

Where to get a book trailer

There are several places to get book trailers.  Decided on what type you want and what you want to state.  Sam offers a great looking package at an affordable price.  Compare trailers from different providers and pick the one that best fits your budget and goals. 

Make sure you receive the book trailer in a format you can work with.  If you plan to make changes in the future to your book trailer, ask if you can get the source file as well.  That way you can send the file to any video editor to add or change things up.