If you’re a writer, one of the things you have to do; other than write something that people will want to read; is to learn how to promote your work, one of the less desirable, but absolutely necessary tasks for every writer. You can try direct-marketing emails, book signings, and social media like LinkedIn and Facebook; they’re all good ways to get the word out; and of course, you should have a blog and author page; but, in today’s visually oriented world, having a video trailer for your book is also an essential.
You’re probably thinking now that making a video is beyond your talent; especially if you’ve never done one before. Or, you might think it’s too expensive. Unless your book sales are in the thousands per month, the amount you’re getting in royalties won’t cover too many extra expenses.
But, with some of the on-line video creation sites, it couldn’t be easier to make a professional quality video that will showcase your literary creation for the world. If you have the means, and you want to produce long videos, it can cost you, but if a 30-second video can get your message across, it can be done for free. The site I discovered that is great for first-time video producers is http://animoto.com. Animoto allows you to produce an unlimited number of 30-second videos at no cost, and they can be emailed to customers, embedded on your blog, author, or book page, and even exported to your YouTube account. Tutorials walk you through the process, and within minutes you can have your first video ready for viewing.
My first effort, to promote the third of my historical novels for young adults, Buffalo Soldier: Incident at Cactus Junction, was a bit amateurish. I forgot to put in the correct title, so it’s out there as My Animoto Video. But, the production quality is okay, and the music adds to the effect. I felt more comfortable when I started the second, promoting Grab the Brass Ring, so the title is prominently displayed, and I think the graphics are out of sight.
Both videos are on my Facebook page, my blog, and YouTube, and since I own the rights to all the images, I’m even able to monetize my YouTube videos by allowing ads to be inserted; just another way to add to your income from writing, and one that I’d not previously thought of.
If you want to make the most of your writing talents, video trailers are the wave of the present and future, so dig into your photo files and start honing your ability to describe your work in a few well-chosen words. The world awaits.