How To Make a Book Trailer

Video marketing popularity is rising. Some companies believe that video reviews from customers are more effective than text reviews. Authors should appeal to a broader audience than readers with video advertising.

Think of a book trailer as a video blurb. Images bring your book to life and give readers a visual preview of your story. It entices them to find out more and makes them eager to read the rest of your story. An even more powerful marketing strategy accompanying the book trailer would be an audiobook. Besides images, readers love audio.

Since most readers love book trailers, you might be curious about how to make one for your book. It’s easier and cheaper than it seems. My book trailer cost only $33. You can view it on YouTube.

You can hire a video editor and pay hundreds of dollars. Or you can opt for a cheaper source.

Video Depositories

You have several options when choosing a subscription service to download digital assets. Some of them include Elements Envato, Motion Ray and Story Blocks. Several other options are available. I chose Elements Envato and paid a monthly subscription of $33. If you opt for an annual package, it works out to $16 per month.

The great thing about these platforms is that they offer various digital assets. Besides video, you can download sound effects, music and templates. Ensure that the platform you choose allows commercial use and doesn’t charge royalties.

Video Compilation

The chances you’re going to find a single video that describes your book’s plot is rare. It’s almost impossible. That’s the reason you have to download several videos that depict your plot. My novel, My Wife and Girlfriend, is about a man who wants children but discovers that his wife is infertile. He meets a stripper who is open to his charms, and their relationship develops.

I downloaded about eight videos to summarize the above plot. The first image was a woman dancing on a pole, then meeting a man and ending up in bed with him. The last few images were a man separating two women fighting and a woman firing a shot. The trailer is about 20 seconds but perfectly depicts the book’s plot.

What Should Your Trailer Include?

Think of your plot. Extract the main events from the story so that readers understand the plot without spoilers. You can opt for a longer trailer than mine. I’d recommend a succinct trailer. Although many people enjoy videos, they want to consume the main points quickly. They’re impatient, and you should get to the point immediately.

Most of the videos in the depository banks don’t include audio. You can add sound effects or music. I added both, and it created a great dramatic effect. It augments the emotions that readers feel while watching the plot.

Initially, I show the book mockup and provide a brief description. That’s important so that readers know what they’re watching. At the end of the trailer, I show my website where readers can purchase the book. My call to action is for the readers to buy the book. That’s the point of a trailer. Use it for marketing and direct readers to your portfolio.


You’ll have to edit the video. The easiest option is to hire a video editor. The cheaper method is to learn to edit. I did it, and I saved money. Free video editing software such as Open Shot and other free options are available.

It may take you a few hours or days to master basic editing, but it’s a skill you can use for future marketing. I used video tutorials and forums to gain knowledge. Editing the video took me another three days. That was my first video editing task, so I made mistakes.

Incorporate all the aspects I mentioned to have an impactful trailer. If you need to use static images for text, you can opt for Canva. It’s a great platform for designing book covers and mockups.

Where to Market the Book Trailer

After completing the trailer, you’ve done most of the hard work. The only thing remaining is to post it on popular forums. I recommend Youtube and Vimeo. Use all your social media pages, and you might consider pinning the trailer. That’ll ensure the first thing people see on your page is the trailer.

You can also use the trailer when doing book launches. If you promote a book in person, you can market the event by posting the video on social media. A book trailer is more likely to entice people to attend your event than if you wrote a post about it.

All the options I mentioned are free. Paid advertising is also an option. One way is to boost your post on social media. Another method is to pay for in-stream adverts. Think of an advert in a YouTube video—that’s in-stream advertising.

Something Else You Should Know

Producing a book trailer can be challenging if you’re doing it the first time and by yourself. It’s easy to be discouraged by the work that it takes. You can make it easier by paying editors, but it’s not too daunting to do it yourself.

It’s a great learning curve, and you should make it fun. Think of the pride you’ll feel knowing you created a product that advertises your book, which many people may view. Just like your book, the trailer is timeless. Once done, the trailer is out there forever.

I believe that your book trailer will be another great marketing weapon, and you’ll feel tremendous joy after it’s complete. Try it out. Worst case scenario, you don’t succeed, and you have to hire an editor.

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