Video trailers: They're not just for the movies

by Allison Horton on

Vook has always helped authors put video in their ebooks, but we've also helped authors create powerful video trailers about their ebooks.

As Vook’s Adam Schnapper notes, "ebook promotion doesn't have to stand still; ebooks can come alive with video." Authro, an author video trailer and website-building service, similarly writes on their website: "More than ever now, we live in a visual, multimedia world. Good book trailers can be powerful and influential tools to increase the number of your books that you sell. Imagine a potential reader watching an exciting one minute teaser about the very story that you weaved into words on the pages of your published work."

The benefits of video trailers:

  • Authors can speak to their audience and build a connection before the reader even reaches the first page.
  • This in turn can lead to faster word-of-mouth recommendations as readers don't feel the need to wait until the end of the book.

  • Video trailers are a great tie in to social media and can be posted on Facebook, Twitter, and blogs.

  • Videos can increase visibility in search engines. Google often displays videos related to certain search inquiries on the first page of results.

Book video trailers don't have to abide by one formula; in fact they should be tailered to the author, book, audience, and marketing strategy. Here are some of our favorite examples:

A video trailer for an ebook about video
Manoush Zomorodi, author of Camera Ready, addresses her audience directly and offers quick tips on standing out on camera, covering them extensively in the ebook; the trailer tells you what to do, the ebook tells you how. She also offers teaser clips from expert interviews within the book. "A quick 1-2 minute, well produced video trailer is the fastest way to connect with your reader in a personal way and spread the word about your book via YouTube and other social media," Manoush tells Vook.

When the ebook is all about connecting with readers
JD Messinger likewise addresses his audience in the video trailer for 11Days, offering insights from his spiritual transformation chronicled in the book. The trailer is a perfect reflection of the ebook’s content: 11 Days in Mays uses WeJIT technology to link readers to online discussion forums in which they can interact directly with JD and discuss topics from the book.

Leveraging video already inside the ebook
Jeff’s Explorer Series: SHARKS by Animal Planet host Jeff Corwin includes a video forward at the beginning of the ebook, introducing readers to the often misunderstood species and piquing their interest in the “mysteries of these fascinating fish.” To promote the release of SHARKS, Jeff posted the video forward on YouTube.

Conveying the "look and feel" of a book
R.S. Vern created video trailers, inside sneak peeks, and even poetry readings for her quirky series about Haee, a daydreaming cat with a crooked tail. Another great technique: at the end, she displays the major retailers where readers can purchase the ebook.

Putting a face to the name
Best-selling author of The Glass Castle, Jeannette Walls filmed herself in her hometown with her mother, her relationship with whom is covered extensively in the book. The New York Times calls the trailer an “almost necessary companion” to a memoir about her unusual childhood (as the daughter of an alcoholic father and a now homeless mother). As of today, the video has 311,022 views on YouTube alone.

They're not for every author, but it's at least worth asking "how could my book benefit from one?" Vook is happy to talk about your ebook needs. Sign up at to learn more about our ebook-building services (with or without video enhancement).

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