October 13th, 2017

Everything you should know about book trailers

Video marketing has gained a great deal of traction in the internet space. You must have watched countless videos this month. This widespread popularity of videos has made book trailers a smart choice to provide a peek into the author’s work. Book trailers are one step ahead of the plain article video marketing. They are designed to create a buzz and introduce the readers to the genre, storyline or characters of the book.

Just like other types of trailers, book trailers are used to capture the attention of the potential buyers. Book trailers are a relatively new concept and are mostly used to promote books online. Currently, there are not many book trailers in the market, so, your trailer can make your book stand out in the crowd.

For the Author

Book trailers are continuously gaining momentum in the market. They have become a vital marketing tool for the publishers, booksellers and authors. They not only set the mood of the book but also provide the well-deserved attention to the authors. It can feature the author that normally stays behind the scenes and help them connect with the readers.

Here’s how Cheryl Strayed, the author of WILD tells her own story in the trailer. It is a simple slideshow of pictures. The trailer lets you know that she went on a hike to overcome the shock of her mother’s death and to discover herself. Later, things became better for her. So, you get the synopsis and for the rest of the story, you will need to read the book.

While the TV and movie actors, producers, directors, etc are well-versed in the art of promoting themselves and their products, many writers may not be comfortable in making public appearances. So, book trailers come handy for showcasing the author’s book reading session or a short talk about the book. The writer can prepare a script and get the video shot comfortably. The shoot can be later jazzed up by experts to bring out a stunning video that persuades the viewers to read the book.


These videos may be typographical, musical, slideshows of still images or full-fledged live action videos shot with the most advanced cameras and loaded with Vfx. A book trailer can be thriller, horror, comedy or romantic depending on the theme of the book.

Have a look at this

This dark trailer for “As Dead As It Gets” will certainly give you chills.

The visuals in this trailer for Going West are out of the world. You can actually see how the pages of the book create a new world for the reader! Although the voice-over is not very clear but the visuals are to die for!

A book video can also be animated or professional actors can perform in the video. Other kinds of trailers can contain testimonials from the readers about how they could not put the book down because of the gripping the story or how an informative book changed their perspective of certain things. The video can also showcase a scene from the book. It can also introduce the potential readers to the protagonist, tell about his/her past, struggles or fears such that the readers can relate to the character. No matter what is the format, a trailer should never reveal too much. The reader should still have the privilege to play with his/her imagination while reading the book.

Now comes the million dollar question: Are book trailers effective? Certainly, they are! But only when all the important factors are taken care off, like the duration, script, storyline, music, actors, editing, call to action, distribution etc. A trailer should not be just about the book or its author, it has to be about something that the viewers care about like the emotions they feel, the struggles they face, changes they desire, things they love or hate, their insecurities, dream or fears. Always remember that trailers are a form of advertisement and they should be entertaining enough to be shared so as to maximize the views.


A trailer is quite capable of building the know, like, trust factor in viewers and consequently drive sales. It can tell the viewers who you are and what your book is all about. It can compel them to empathize with the characters. A trailer can make them like you as a person or as an author. Finally, it can make them believe that you and your book are not going to disappoint them. It makes your book ‘pop’ in the crowded marketplace and stay in the mind of the reader during the purchase process.


The video should ignite interest and hook the viewer from the very start. The duration should be reasonably long to include the essential elements but short enough considering the attention span of the viewers. The music of the trailer should be chosen carefully so that it is suitable to the tone of the book.


Whatever style of making is adopted, each book trailer has to be designed keeping a particular target audience in mind. Careful attention has to be paid to the demographics, age groups, likes-dislikes and emotional triggers of the target.


Distribution of the video is also an important aspect. You need to choose the right channels to reach the target audience. Once you get a book trailer done, it can be shared innumerable times to maximise its reach. Apart from posting it on your blogs and website, you can also upload your book trailer on Vimeo, BookReels, Youtube etc. Book trailers can also be played in shopping malls or outside book shops.


The trailer should end with the visuals of the book title or cover. This helps the viewers remember the name and look of the book. So, next time they see the book in the store it looks familiar. Adding the release date, store names or call to action towards the end of the video can work wonders.

There are various softwares available online to make your own book trailer. You can use Windows movie maker or Powerpoint to create your own trailer. But if you need a professional looking video that can convert more viewers into buyers, you should contact an agency that specialises in (book)trailers. No matter who creates your trailer always remember that a bad trailer can be counterproductive. The actors or voice-over artists should be professional. You should play safe while creating the video by yourself or make sure to consult an experienced firm because a wrong approach can do more harm than good.

Trailers are a cost effective promotional tool for books. You can easily see the number of views on your video. A well-executed trailer video provides an interesting glimpse of your book to make the readers want to dig deeper in your writing. As a result, they can’t wait to have your book in their hands.

An effective good book trailer can even pull a reluctant reader to the bookstore. So, if you are planning to publish and sell your book then don’t miss out on the video promotion and get a book trailer to entice the readers. Also, don’t forget to refer a book trailer for your upcoming book purchase.









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