Book Trailers

Seems there are more book trailers these days. I see them everywhere – blogs, author sites, review sites. Even Amazon has them. Some are slide shows with music or voice-overs. Others are short films. Both convey the plot quite well. But, where do book trailers figure into the whole marketing strategy? There’s certainly enough hype and fuss over them. Some people have blasted authors for simple slideshows or lack of voice over or that it wasn’t made by Stephen Spielberg for crying out loud. I think those people are missing the whole point – it’s not supposed to be a real movie – just a visual book jacket. Trailers don’t have to be elaborate.

Did I think it’d make a difference for me? Would I buy or read a book based on a trailer? At first, I said no. Not that I don’t enjoy watching them, but because I’ve already determined the book is on my reading list before I see the trailer. Usually, I read the premise first, then I’ll take a look at the trailer. But it was late one night, and I’d spent all day writing and editing, so the last thing I wanted to do was read book reviews. But I had just finished reading EVERMORE and needed a new read. So, like always, I went to Amazon to read reviews and possibly take a glance at a first page or two to see if the book interested me. I clicked on IF I STAY, and my weary eyes saw it had a trailer. I watched, and that was that – I put IF I STAY on my reading list. Another book got the me same way – GRACELING. Well, to be fair, I’d already put GRACELING on my reading list because everyone was talking it up. But normally, the premise wasn’t exactly my thing. Or so I thought. Whoa. Suddenly, it was a book I wanted to read because it intrigued me. Do I think all authors should do book trailers? No. It’s just an extra.

If you’re wondering what’s up with all the YA novels on my list lately, it’s because that’s the genre I’m querying right now, and it’s also my current work in progress.

Anyway, here’s my question – do they work for you? Do book trailers make you want to buy or read the book?


6 thoughts on “Book Trailers

  1. I have not yet seen a book trailer that would motivate me to read the book featured in it. Unfortunately I have seen a book trailer that convinced me I DIDN’T want to read the book that was being promoted.

    I prefer to read reviews (usually not online reviews) they provide more depth of information. And, one or two friends of mine, who have similar tastes sometimes recommend books.

    There’s no doubt the book trailer will beomce more popular as smaller bites of information are easier to digest.

  2. They made me want to buy Lilith Saintcrow’s YA that just came out. The trailer is pretty good ^^

    Most of the time I see the trailer after I’ve already determined I want to read the book. I think anything an author can do these days to promote his/herself is a good thing, and in this visual age I think trailers help a lot.

  3. Strange Angels… yep, that’s another one on my reading list.

    But, like you, most of the time I know if the book is something I’ll be reading or not without the trailer. I do find that if a book on Amazon has a trailer, I’ll read the review AND watch the trailer. As Diane pointed out, reviews are much more in depth.

    True… self-promotion is so important. Whatever gives us the edge, right?

  4. Yeah, in this day and age we need all the edge we can get. I think that trailers are going to catch the casual reader. Those of us who are serious readers (laughs at self) aren’t going to care one way or another, but the younger generations are very visual.

  5. Does a book trailer make me want to buy the book? No. What the main tool for them is now is the ease to sell it to the foreign market, a short ad helps them understand whats happening and if they want to buy the series. Its a good tool and worth it, however perhaps the question should be how much return does a book advert give you vs ordinary marketing tools?

  6. Book trailers are fun, but they’ve never influenced my decision to buy or not. In fact, based on the Sherrilyn Kenyon book trailer for Acheron, I would have been inclined NOT to buy the book. Not that I DID buy it — I got it from the library. LOL


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