Friday, June 22, 2007

Book trailer buzz

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:


Kristin said...

Actually, I think anything to increase your 'brand' among people is a good thing. Just like any commericals on tv, are they 100% marketing only towards people who will buy their products? No. But most companies run these commercials and buy these print ads for name recognition.

Coca-cola has done it so well, some areas of the country call all sodas, Cokes. Instead of tissue, many of say "Kleenex."

So, even if most of these 1200 You Tube viewers don't buy your book, the more people who are exposed to your name and your work, the more name recognition you get. And that can only be a good thing. Eventually, that name recognition will end up selling books.

Just my two cents...

Anonymous said...

you're right...I just watched it yet AGAIN!

love you,


Brenda Coulter said...

Right back at you, Skeezicks.

...the more people who are exposed to your name and your work, the more name recognition you get. And that can only be a good thing. Eventually, that name recognition will end up selling books.

Exactly so, Kristin.

wordlings said...

I wish I could view your trailer. My connection is tooooo slow, so all I ever get from this format is blotchy, jerky talk and video. Wish there was an alternate photo and script way to watch. My numbers may not be legion (or maybe they are) but we SLOW computer types are ignored by this wonderful new stuff. :o|

Anonymous said...

I liked your video. I thought it was very creatively put together. And it definitely made me want to go out and buy your book, which I was planning on doing anyway, so hey mission accomplished. On a completely different note, have you checked out The Austen Series by Debra White Smith? She has gone back and rewritten modern versions of Austen's classics. I really enjoy them as well as the originals by Jane herself. Have a good weekend! ~Julia

Douglas Cootey said...

I think it's great you are taking time to promote your work. What people do not realize, perhaps, is that if you do not promote your current work, and if that promotion does not translate into new sales, then there will be no market for your new book. You simply cannot just sit back and let your book sell itself while you lock yourself away in your ivory tower typing out a new story. There is too much noise. Too much vying for reader eyeballs to trust word of mouth and Providence to move units.

"I did it for the same reason I blog: Because it was fun. And because it might sell a few books."

Are there really any better reasons? Good for you. :)

Good luck.

The Splintered Mind - Overcoming Neurological Disabilities With Lots Of Humor And Attitude

Jennifer Shirk said...

Looks great! I can't wait to read it!

Brenda Coulter said...

Actually, Wordlings, your numbers are legion. A lot of home-users are still on dial-up, so you're hardly alone. But I'm sorry you can't view the trailer.

Julia, thanks for your kind words. No, I haven't read Debra White Smith, but I'm not any more interested in reading pseudo-Jane Austen than I am in eating artificial chocolate.

Douglas, thanks for the encouragement. All the best to you.

Jennifer, I hope you like the new book. Be sure to let me know.