Do book trailer's work?

Book Trailers, do readers watch them? I remember when I first heard about a book trailer. I was, "Oh, you mean like a movie trailer?" and I was told very much so. A book trailer is basically your blurb in video/picture form. And you have it on YouTube and your web site and/or your blog. Supposedly like movie trailers, people watch your book trailer and run to the book store or log into their favorite online book store and buy your book.

This is a wonderful concept, but is it true?

First, let me tell you that when I heard about these. I bought into it hook, line, and sinker. I researched royalty free photo's and music. Figured out how to use my Windows movie maker and then proceeded to spend hours on my first one. I never read directions and I always have to learn by myself with trial and error. Now I have cut it down to making a trailer in a relative short time, if I can find the pictures I want to use and the music. Those two things still take the most time.

I made a Trailer about me for my web site, and it's still on YouTube but not my web site. Here is my first trailer. (I no longer have my LOL)
Then I did one for my Relay for Life team. And another couple for my ghost buster team. Yes I like ghosts, but that's another post. And after my first book trailer, I have made one for almost all my books.

Now back to my original question, do readers watch book trailers? I went to YouTube to check out my view numbers. Before I go further, just let me say, I have no idea if YouTube counts the viewers from views via an author website and/or blog. So for this let's say it doesn't. You want readers to find you and come to your web site. If they're viewing it from your web site or blog, then they're already there and hopefully interested.

I wanted to see how my numbers were. I put up my first trailer in 2007, this was for 'Mary's Stories' and since then I've had 1,602 views. I put up a wine tasting trailer for our wine group in 2007 and I've had 104 views. My relay for life in 2007 has had 2,122 views. I have 6 various ghost ones and they are from 96 to 475 views and they were all posted in 2008.

Now for my Book Trailers, now some of these I had to re-downloaded because of revamping, etc. Meet Me In Fantasyland was posted 12/15/11 with a, drum roll here, 35 views. Watching Jenny 12/16/11 with only 20 views. Mr. Romance 12/16/11, 32 views. Romance and Misconceptions 12/16/11, 23 views and Chick Magnet 12/18/11, 30 views. This must have been when I did an upgrade and I didn't keep track of what the view numbers were prior to that date.

With my Beckett Series I did one trailer for the series instead of individual books and so it was downloaded 7/24/12 and has 60 views. Here is my last venture into trailerdom.
After looking at my dismal stats, I really think I'm doing the trailers more for me, because I do have fun making them. Because they're not getting the views I'd like. I can honestly say though, I have never watched a book trailer and then went in search of the book to purchase. And as for the movie trailers, I think there was only one time I watched the trailer prior to seeing the movie. And that was Ted.

I'm very interested in other authors success or lack of success if they're like me, when it comes to book trailers. Please share your story.

If you have had the desired effect, please, please, please tell us what you do. Do you use certain tag words? What do you do to attract readers on YouTube to your book trailer? Thanks for any thoughts and words of wisdom you'd like to share!


Marie Higgins said…
Mary, I have a book trailer for almost every one of my books - and only a few of them were made by someone else. I actually have fun picking out the music and choosing the right pics. So I'm probably making my videos for me. lol

But I also think this is just another promotional tool. So even if it makes readers want to at least check me out, that's fine with me.

I don't have high views on my stories, either. Two of my books are much higher than the rest and I don't know why. lol But that doesn't mean they are my best sellers, because until I updated my book covers, those two books weren't selling well at all - yet the views on youtube were high. Go figure...

Long story short, I think it's just another way to get our names out there.
Angelyn said…
Glad to hear an honest experience about these. Thanks for sharing yours.
Mary, I recently started producing book trailers. My most recent -- -- has been up a week and has had over 100 views. I think it's doing so well because it's HOW TO RECOGNIZE AN AUTHOR. A lot of writers respond to the humor of it.

I think book trailers and related videos are just another part of marketing/promotion that MAY help with branding which, hopefully, will result eventually in increased sales. I don't think anyone can definitively say that book trailers will increase sales any more than one can say handing out bookmarks increases sales.

But, I'll keep producing them simply because it's so much fun!
Mary Martinez said…
Thank you all for dropping by. I think I see a consensus here. Although Trailers may not be viewed as much as we like, they're a blast to make them so hopefully in the long run they'll draw readers in.

Joan, great trailer it is way fun. You know I really like Stouffer's Garden Lasagne. LOL. Thanks for sharing.
Hi Mary!

I haven't done a trailer. As a true skeptic, I've waited to see if it's worth the time. Perhaps it is if you're a big name writer like Nora, but then you wouldn't need them. Your numbers sound much like mine for blogging, some hit, some don't. If you enjoy it, do it!
stanalei said…
Time is an challenge for me, Mary. So I have yet to dive into the book trailer waters. I think I'd like making them, but just for myslef and perhaps it would help me distill the story essence in to 90 exciting seconds. Certainly something to think about. Great post!
I've had about 3,500 hits on my trailer

One of the ways ppl could enter contests to win signed books or ARCs on my blog was by posting the trailer all over. If your audience is YA, you'll do better.
Mary Martinez said…
Sandy, Amber, Stanalei,
Thanks for dropping by it's always interesting to have others point of view on any topic!
John Lepsky said…
Good post. I like it. It was interesting to read it. Great thank's author for sharing…

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