How I Made My Book Trailer (for Free)
Thanks for having me over, Bailey!
A couple of years ago, book trailers became a “thing”. You can blame the digital revolution for this one. Readers stopped frequenting brick-and-mortar stores, and in turn, stopped getting introduced to new books via events, promotional materials, and employee recommendations. Instead, they relied on introductions from the same place they made the majority of their purchases—the Internet.
So, authors adapted.
Borrowing a page from the film industry’s playbook, they began condensing their blurbs into short, accessible videos. If readers were enticed, they could go to the author’s site for more information. Simple as that.
Okay, maybe simple isn’t the best way to describe it. Book trailers are an expected staple in marketing campaigns these days, and let me tell you, those things cost a pretty penny. I looked around, and most start around $350. Start! That’s a little less than my car is worth.
(I wish I were exaggerating.)
Obviously, I couldn’t afford to hire someone to do Strength’s book trailer, so I took on the project myself. We’re talking hours and hours of work here, but you know what? I managed to pull it off for free, and I’m pretty darn proud of myself.
Want to give trailer-making a try? Here’s what you’ll need:
- Some kind of video editing software. I used a combination of Windows Movie Maker (free) and an old, diluted version of Sony Vegas I had from college. I know other people who’ve had luck with programs like iMovie, Animoto, etc. Play around with a few of them, and then use whichever one works best for you.
- (Optional) Royalty-free or public domain video, i.e. Videezy or Neo’s Clip Archive
- (Optional) Royalty-free or public domain images, i.e. Public Domain Pictures or Morgue File
- Royalty-free or public domain music, i.e. Incompetech or SoundCloud
- An Internet connection
- A YouTube account
Oh! And before you get started, here are a few quick tips:
- Read license information carefully. Even if you don’t have to, it’s nice to credit those who helped contribute to your project.
- Choose music and visuals that complement your genre, i.e. I write paranormal music, so I went for a mysterious, otherworldly vibe.
- Keep things moving. Ideally, book trailers are between 00:30 and 1:30 long. If you use still images, try playing around with video effects that pan or zoom.
- Avoid bombarding viewers with huge blocks of text.
- Include relevant information, i.e. title, author, publisher, release date, etc.
Beyond that, just try to have fun. Think of your book trailer as another way to express yourself. Good luck!
Carrie daydreamed her way through college—until they thrust a marketing degree into her hands, slapped a summa cum laude seal on the corner, and booted her out into a less-than-stellar job market. Instead of panicking at the prospect of unemployment, she used her Midwestern logic to steer into the skid and point her life in the direction she really wanted to go: writing out those daydreams.
Series: Mark of Nexus – Book 1
Publisher: Sapphire Star Publishing
Category: New Adult (NA)
Genre: Paranormal Romance (PNR)
Release Date: March 07, 2013
Formats: E-Book & Paperback
Paperback ISBN: 9781938404351
E-book ISBN: 9781938404368
When college student Rena Collins finds herself nose-to-chest with the campus outcast, she’s stunned. Wallace Blake is everything she’s ever wanted in a man—except he can’t touch her. His uncontrollable strength, a so-called gift from his bloodline, makes every interaction dangerous. And with a secret, supernatural war brewing among his kind, there’s no time to work it out. To keep Wallace in her life, Rena will have to risk a whole lot more than her heart.
“Carrie Butler is now on my must read list.” ~Lynn Rush, author of Violet Midnight
“I carried Strength with me everywhere. Grocery shopping, the dinner table, you name it. The storyline was addictive, and the characters were hilarious. I couldn’t put it down.” ~Jessica Therrien, author of Oppression
“…Carrie Butler’s debut novel is brilliant, riveting, imaginative and seamlessly written.” ~Lisa Regan, author of Finding Claire Fletcher
“This is definitely one to buy for the bookshelf.” - All’s Fair with Pen and Paper
“I love that Carrie took so much time in building the relationship between them. Yay for no instalove!” - Read It, Reviewed It
“I freaking loved every last word on every page.” - Scelest’s Journal
“I’d definitely recommend this to anyone who’s interested in reading a bloody good book. :)” - The Life of a Total Book Nerd
“I devoured this book in two days – staying up until the early hours because I didn’t want to stop reading!” - Kyra Lennon, author of Game On
so that’s Carrie! i worked with Carrie during my NA Alley days and i am so excited to be hosting her on the blog today for a stop in her STRENGTH blog tour. she’s a wonderful woman & truly inspiring as an author because just look at the things she does for herself! she made her own book trailer (for free!) and now you can, too.
if you have any questions/comments/anything for Carrie, please comment below.
thanks for stopping by, Carrie!