Do Book Trailers Sell Books?

Publicity Tip #95 ~

This is a bit of a controversial topic in that it’s entirely subjective to the person interpreting the data… but nails to knuckles, in my books the answer is no, not directly. But that’s not a bad thing 😉

Here’s why:

Book trailers are teasers. They are wonderful visual fodder for bibliophiles. The sole purpose here is to catch your eye and get you interested in what’s being sold… it’s your advertisement. These little marketing wonders make connections for authors and readers.

A successful book trailer has a clear target audience and well-defined presence that taps into the psyche of readers and…emoticon scramble

… encourages them to go to the author’s website…

… encourages them to go to an online book retailer…

… encourages them to go to another platform site (goodreads/wattpad/facebook/etc.)…

From there, it is up to those readers to keep reading – the book blurb, reviews, and so on until that site has convinced them to act and buy.

So you see, you can’t just tap a button on a book trailer and buy a book (they haven’t gotten that complex yet).

Book trailers are motivators.

Do you need a book trailer to motivate readers?

Not necessarily. It’s up to you to do the research and determine whether this would be a good use of your promotional time/budget or not.

I will say this though, book trailers are great for catching the eye of people who tend to glance past book covers (your other big sales feature). If you go to local book fairs and events then this is a great thing to have playing on one of your larger multi-media devices in your book display to grab the attention of passers by. If you can get them to pause long enough to watch your trailer, your window of opportunity just opened a little bit wider.

If you’re interested in making your own book trailer there are a number of different ways to achieve this (30s free trailers on Animoto or using MovieMaker to your advantage). What you might not know about though are the two site below that offer FREE content to help make those DIY projects really stand out.

LunaPic is an online photo editor that’s relatively simple to use AND it allows you to add animated graphics to your images!

MotionBackgroundsForFree gives DIYers 7 a day trial access to free downloads of full motion backgrounds with all of the corresponding copyrights.

There’s no reason you can’t put a little of that money back into your publicity budget with some free professional imaging and still manage to catch the eye of new readers with a fantastic book trailer.

If you have a book trailer and want a great indie site to share it on check out this option for Indie Authors.

Categories: Publicity

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4 replies

  1. I’ve heard that one of the main things is to keep it short – about 45 seconds is perfect. People often won’t continue beyond that point. I’m going to try this on my next one, just to see how it goes and to learn how. 🙂


    • Yup, that’s what they say. If you’re over 1min. then you run the risk of losing your audience. I find the 30s trailers a bit too short for my liking but tend to favour the 60s ones. I find I can get “everything said” in that amount of time. 45s is a great middle ground – have fun with it!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks for the info, M.J. I haven’t made one for The Fallen…I’ll be having a play later! 😀


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