I’m thrilled to have Darcy Pattison here talking about book trailers today. Besides writing the fantastic Fiction Notes blog and being an author herself, Darcy’s also written the Book Trailer Manual (which has a trailer here).
Librarians and Teachers Love Book Trailers
Alan Gratz, author of several teen novels (Samurai Shortstop, Something Rotten, Something Wicked, The Brooklyn Nine, and Fantasy Baseball), said, “I asked a room full of librarians at the 2010 North Carolina School Library Media Association conference if book trailers matter, and was stunned to have the entire room yell, ‘Yes! WE love book trailers!’”
Naomi Bates, librarian at Northwest High School Library in Justin, TX recently surveyed 100 librarians about their usage of book trailers in their school libraries. The results are astounding.
This is the first question and the responses.
How effective are book trailers in presenting a book to students?
* Very effective – 66.3%
* Somewhat effective – 33.7%
* Not effective – 1%
That is 99% of librarians surveyed who think trailers are effective. Wow!
Conclusion? If you’re writing for the children/teen book market, a book trailer is a must.
Long-Term Promotion with Book Trailers
It’s also clear that we need to think of long-term strategies for book trailers. If you are hoping to make a splash on YouTube, your video only has a 3-week window; over half of the viewers for any given video come in the first three weeks. But as an ongoing “brochure” for your book, videos can continue to interest the “long-tail.” That is, they may only get a dozen hits a day instead of thousands, but a video can get that kind of hits for a long, long time.
Here are some ways to take advantage of the long-term benefits of a book trailer video:
Sig files. Yes, it’s important to list the video in your sig file, just like you should list your website. Use this sig file every time you post to a listserv, especially if it’s to a teacher or librarian listserv, because that’s one place they look to find something like this.
Links. Ask friends and colleagues to post links to your video on websites and on listservs. Any time you write a guest post or
Speaking engagements. Any time you speak, you can show the video. Remember, librarians think it’s 99% effective! Use this multimedia book cover to generate interest. Videos can be embedded in Powerpoint presentations. (Note: If you are trying to link to a YouTube.com video, you can’t download it, which means you must have a live internet connection for this to work.)
A second option is to put your video on a digital picture frame and have it looping.
Website and Author Central. Post the video to every relevant site online. Your website, your author page on Amazon (https://authorcentral.amazon.com/gp/home), your profile on social networking sites, etc.
Consider Multiple Videos. Finally, consider using multiple videos to promote your book. Because YouTube videos only have a 3-week half-life, you may want to release something new every 3 weeks. Ideas for a variety of trailers include a video showing a book signing, appealing to a different audience, highlighting different information, updated information on a great review, reactions of fans, or the author reading an excerpt.
Book trailers, as that multimedia book cover, are perfect for book launches. But when properly used, the benefit of a trailer can be a long term, online presence that is effective in encouraging someone to read your book.