Many of my writer friends have been asking how my book trailer is doing, so I promised to post an update here on the blog.
It was three weeks ago today that I uploaded my video to the internet. As of this morning, more than 1,200 people have viewed the trailer, the vast majority of those views being logged by YouTube. If you watched the trailer here at NRJW or at GalleyCat (I still can't believe my little video was featured on GalleyCat!) those clicks were counted by YouTube.
That's a lot more views than I expected in the first three weeks, so I'm very pleased. But what will this mean in terms of sales? My author friends are wondering if they, too, should make trailers or hire someone to make trailers for them. Since the former would require a huge investment of time and the latter would necessitate a large cash outlay, the authors are clamoring to know if this is an effective way to promote books.
As I have said from the beginning, I honestly don't know. When you buy a book, how can the author or publisher know whether viewing a book trailer influenced your purchase decision?
Because I've made it known that I welcome comments on this publicity experiment, I've received all kinds of advice during the past three weeks. YouTube is not the place to promote a book trailer, two people have said, because the traffic is not "quality." Two others have pointed out that GalleyCat is read by literary types and publishing insiders, not by people who are looking for "category" inspirational romance novels to read, so the GalleyCat exposure won't net me anything. One person e-mailed to suggest that I should focus on writing good books rather than on "these publicity stunts that can't possibly pay off." And one commenter said here on the blog that it was "funny" I'd made a book trailer, since I'd posted nearly a year ago that I didn't like any of the trailers I'd seen.
All interesting observations. Here's my response: As any spammer will tell you, the internet is free, and the more lines you toss in the water, the more likely you are to get a few nibbles. I know the casual YouTube clicker who stumbles across my video isn't likely to end up buying the book. And I know publishing-types don't read GalleyCat in the hope of seeing news about an upcoming inspirational romance novel by an unknown author. I'm fully aware that most readers have never seen a book trailer, and that the few who have aren't necessarily impressed by them.
So why did I make a book trailer?
I did it for the same reason I blog: Because it was fun. And because it might sell a few books.
Here's my trailer again, for those who haven't yet seen it and for my sister, who's probably not tired of watching it yet. Click on the "forward" arrow: