Posted in blog, blog tour, guest post

Guest Post By Anna Mocikat: Are Book Trailers Useful or a Waste of Money?

Trailers have been around forever in the movie and TV industry. The big studios spend a lot of money on their creation, and even indie films have to come with trailers if they want to succeed in their niche markets. Video game studios also put a lot of effort into the production of trailers, which often show scenes exclusively shot for them.

With the rise of YouTube and social media, trailers have become even more important for the entertainment industry than they used to be in earlier decades.

So, why are book trailers still such a rare phenomenon? And why are many of them so poorly made?

Many indie authors consider the (often costly) option of a trailer for a marketing tool as a waste of money––which is understandable. A good custom-made trailer can cost $300-$500, but of course, there’s no limit on how much can be spent on them. Big publishers often hire marketing companies specialized in TV commercials and easily pay between 10k-50k to advertise the latest books of their bestselling authors.

Others argue that a trailer makes no sense for a book, because, after all, you’re supposed to want to read the book, not watch it like a movie.

I have to admit that ten years ago when book trailers were still a new phenomenon, I thought the same and was therefore surprised when my publisher asked me to have a trailer produced for my book.

However, I completely changed my mind on making trailers since then because of the success of mine.

I have come to believe that book trailers are a valid marketing tool for various reasons.

First of all, our daily life has become much more visual-oriented than ever before. More people are watching YouTube videos nowadays than reading books (sadly). To convince such an audience to give a book a chance, it’s a good move to offer them visual impulses they understand. This is only possible with a trailer. Marketing experts know that moving images are way more powerful than single images, which is why we see short clips as ads for all kinds of products in our feeds on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

Secondly, if big publishers are willing to spend thousands of dollars on a single trailer for a single book, then it must be worth it. Big publishers never spend money on anything for no reason. They have stone-cold marketing experts who constantly evaluate which strategy is useful and which isn’t. So if it works for the big publishers, then it can also work for Indie and small press authors.

All that being said, I would strongly advise keeping away from making a trailer yourself if your only experience with videography is shooting little videos with your phone and posting them on Facebook.

It’s the same as with book covers. Every book marketing guru will advise you to hire a skilled cover designer instead of trying to photoshop something by yourself. Don’t. Just don’t.

It’s similar with trailers. A bad trailer is counterproductive. It quickly can turn out boring or look amateurish, which will likely scare potential readers off instead of convincing them to buy your book.

The same can be said about so-called “generic” trailers. If you do some research, you will quickly find people willing to make you a trailer for $50-$100. As so often in life, you will experience a simple truth: you get what you pay for. Your trailer will turn out dull, soulless, and/or feature footage and images everyone has seen a hundred times.

If you decide to have a trailer for your book, find someone who will put effort and creativity into it, and who is willing to create something unique for you––as unique as your book, and transporting its essence visually.

There are two kinds of trailers I would recommend:

Continue reading “Guest Post By Anna Mocikat: Are Book Trailers Useful or a Waste of Money?”
Posted in blog, changes

Retirement of Speak Your Truth And Newsletter

After a lot of consideration, I have decided to retire the Speak Your Truth blog series. The purpose of creating this series has been realized (for myself). It was what I needed to learn and grow. Now I feel a need to expand beyond just this series.

One of my new goals is to have empowerment blog posts every month (maybe even a few times a months). As well as Journaling Discovery posts. In these two ways, I will be continuing the idea of Speak Your Truth, but in a better way. This will allow me the freedom to experiment with new ideas and to go a little deeper, which the Journaling Discovery posts are supposed to do.

I also will be retiring the weekly newsletter. It was a great idea, but right now I don’t feel capable of maintaining it (but I may retry it again in the future). My main goal is to add more content to my blog, so that’s where my focus will be for a bit.

I know there have been a lot of changes to this blog in a short amount of time. I have been working to decide how I want to move forward, and implementing changes as I go along. And sometimes the changes will be getting rid of the old, or releasing something that’s to time consuming. My end goal is to add value, but in a way I can maintain and get excited about.

I also wanted to take a moment to thank all those who read this blog. Sometimes it feels like I’m talking into a dark void. But I enjoy having a platform in which to speak from. It’s nice to know I have a voice. And it’s pretty cool when sometimes people hear it.

Love and Light to you all!

Posted in blog, networking, writing

Blogger Elissa Renee: Loves To Help Others

I ran across Elissa Renee on Twitter last week, and I was impressed with how much she likes to reach out and help others. This sort of thing always makes me stop and take another look, because that mentality really resonates with me.

One of the really cool things that got my attention about Elissa is that she likes to take blog posts, or even whole blogs of others, and create pins and post them up on her Pinterest account. I did not even know you could do that (does that mean I’m woefully behind the times? lol). Anyways I thought it was a really neat idea. I might even do this myself. I might have to dust off my Pinterest account first.

Anyways, Elissa is pretty active on Twitter, so you can have a fun chat with her here. Or you check out her blog. Or jump over to her Pinterest account and check out some really neat pins she has up there of her own and from others’ blogs.

I’m always on the search for fun, interesting, and helpful people, and I was pleased to run across Elissa. I’m going to keep looking and see who else I can find.

Do you know of any bloggers out there (yourself included) you can recommend to me? I am actively creating a network of like-minded individuals that have a message and want to get it out there. Please feel free to post links in the comments below.

Posted in blog, inspiration, inspirational, writing

A Blog on Writing and Personal Empowerment

This blog has gone through many transformations, but I feel the most recent one has been the most significant. I have spent a lot of time redesigning, revamping, and reconsidering how I want this blog to go in recent months. It took a while for me to fit the pieces together, but I am finally starting to see a picture form.

Up until a few weeks ago this blog has been me just throwing things out there that have come to me in my journey of life. For a great while it was solely dedicated to writing and writing posts. Then August of last year, I started the Speak Your Truth series because I decided I had more to say other than just writing. I think all of my actions on this blog have been leading me up to this.

It’s a coming out party for me. As I have decided I want to say more and do more. I have sat on the sidelines long enough. I want to get out there and do something. You see, just because I had a blog didn’t mean I actually did anything significant with it. It was simply a place to post ideas. But I want to start going beyond that and start engaging people. I want to be a place of not just ideas, but a place of inspiration and collaboration.

What does that mean exactly? I still don’t have all the pieces. I’m moving forward one step at a time. I want to add more online classes to offer what knowledge I have to those seeking it. I want to begin a weekly newsletter to help connect and motivate people. I want to help promote other authors and their work. I want to help inspire people to rise higher and claim their personal power.

So with all that in mind, I have changed the message behind this blog to more clearly state what it is I’m doing here. This is a blog on writing, but also a blog supporting and inspiring personal empowerment.

Writing fiction isn’t enough for me. I want to do more, be more, and give back more. I am excited in this new journey, and I hope all of you will enjoy it as I offer these new ideas and encouragement. I will close with one of my favorite quotes of all times.

“Be the change you wish to see in the world.” ––Mahatma Gandhi

Posted in blog, guest post

Looking for Guest Post in September!

Do you have a new book you would like promote? Are you an author looking to talk about yourself and some of your amazing work? Or maybe you have an incredible service or message that you are trying to get out there to help people live better lives? If you fall in any of these categories, or know someone who does, then this offer is for you.

In the month of September, I am looking to expand my blog, readership, and services, and I feel the best way to do that is to also help others promote themselves as well. We live in an amazing age of instant information, but sometimes it’s about making sure the right people see what is offered. There’s so much available, and so much I think people could benefit from if they simply knew what’s out there. Help me raise awareness about the things that matter to you. Maybe what matters to you, will matter to someone else too?

If you wish to do a blog post, please contact me with you post idea. You write the post, and then I’ll post it here! Let’s help people find the information they are looking for.