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:

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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.

Posted in guest post, inspiration, inspirational, writing

Speak Your Truth: An Invitation to Speak Up

A few months ago, I decided to embark on a new journey to speak regularly about truths I found important to me. I did not have a clear vision of where this journey would take me, but I knew it was important. So I blazed forward with a thundering heart of excitement and a thrill of the unknown. What exactly would I talk about each month? And could I eventually do two posts a month like I original thought about doing?

Well, the topics each month so far have found me. I write when a great truth inspires me to do so, and it’s usually something I am currently working through on my own personal journey. But I think that’s where the true gold can be found. If it’s not from the heart and felt deeply, then the truth rings hollow.

As for two posts a month, I have decided one is what I can do comfortably, especially now that I am starting up a brand new plan of (though it’s mostly just a revamp and extension of my old plan) to continue writing posts here, write on my current fiction and start some new fiction, and begin my own publishing company (that will for a time only be publishing my own works, but may extend to others down the road).

I, however, would love to still do two post some or most months–on this series specifically–and this is where perhaps you, and others, come in. My truth isn’t the only truth out there. This world is full of truths. The kind of truths that are spoken from the heart. The kind that ring so true it makes us want to stand up and shout. Those are the kind of truths this blog series is meant for, whether they are mine or someone elses.

So I extend an open invitation to all who read this blog (and I have even sent a few personal invitations to those I know) to post on this series.

What is your truth? What would you like to tell the world? What do you need to speak about just to speak it out loud to get it off your chest? Your truth matters.

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Posted in blog, inspiration, inspirational, writing

New Blog Series: Speak Your Truth

My life has gone through some major changes over the last few months and this will probably continue for awhile. These changes have been good ones, but they have drastically changed how I think and approach life. I now have a deeper understanding of myself, and the world around me. One of the things I understand is how much this world needs healing. There is not a single one of us who can heal the world, but if we each do a small part then major change can occur.

I have decided that I can do a few things to help the healing process, and part of that is by creating a new blog series that I will be posting on once a month. I hope to do twice a month at some point, but I have a lot going on in my life right now and only feel comfortable committing to one a month for now.

This series is geared at giving myself a place to speak up and share some of the things I have learned as I have grown and expanded over the last few months. But it will also be a place others can come to speak their truths as well.

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