Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Create a Book Trailer

(This is step #14 of my How To Publish An eBook thang)

You've got an ebook published. You've got a web page designed. But do you have a book trailer?

I think a book trailer is absolutely vital if you're doing a Kickstarter campaign, and it's a "i suppose so" otherwise. I say that because I haven't seen the trailer for Finding Time driving a lot of sales. (I think a trailer is NECESSARY for any successful Kickstarter campaign.)

When was the last time your book-buying decision was prompted by watching a book trailer? Me neither.

How does one create a book trailer? I'm no expert. This is what I did: I watched a bunch of book trailers by others and I took notes. I looked for what would work to help move me toward buying that work.

If I were smarter, I'd have collected a dozen of the best book trailers, then assembled a focus group of people in my target audience to ask them what worked.

I then had lunch with a video guy, Kemp Lyons, describing what I wanted.

If I do this again, I'll first draw up a crude story-board. This will serve as a working document that we can mark up as we discuss what I want and what he can do. It'll also serve as a summary blueprint documenting the project and decisions that we can both refer to.

We didn't have this and the lack of it caused a bit more to-and-fro than was needed.

Another thing about book trailers is music that accompanies the video. You have to have a sound track. And unless you are a composer and have a symphony and a sound stage, you will have to glom onto someone else's music to license it. I had no clue about any of this, but Kemp did a great job of finding an excellent sounding instrumental piece and he took care of licensing and everything. I just wrote checks.

If I had had a voice-over, I would have needed to hire voice talent, or gone into the studio to record it myself. This would have entailed writing a script for the talent. And syncing the voice to the video.

I'm happy with the end result, but for this project, I don't think the game was worth the candle. (However, it did feed my vanity.)


(You can find the bullet-point outline of How To Publish An Ebook here.)

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