I’m pleased to welcome a guest blogger, Sheila Clover English, the book video producer interviewed earlier this week. I know you have questions, and Sheila’s got answers, so don’t hesitate to leave a comment for her here or contact her via email or telephone.
Sheila Clover English, Circle of Seven Productions
What is the benefit of using a book video? Longevity, branding, fan base expansion, cross-genre highlights, name recognition, engages the viewer, multi-utilization, cost effective, target-audience opportunity and just plain fun!
- Longevity. When a print ad has found its way to the bottom of the bird cage, a video will still be on the internet where people who develop an interest in reading, or an interest in a topic that leads them to your book, can find it. Video remains on the internet for an extended period of time.
- Branding. When doing an overall push of a brand for whatever reason (new series, switch genre, etc.) you can tie in the look and feel you’re going with through your video. It helps people visualize the brand.
- Fan base expansion. By utilizing video you’re letting a new group of people find out about you. People have evolved into visual creatures and they are used to having their entertainment given to them through visual means. Where movies, video games, music and television have been able to reach these consumers, books have historically been left out. Not anymore. Those consumers are now potential readers for any author.
- Cross-genre highlights. It’s hard to show someone that you write both romance and suspense or mystery and comedy just by using a print ad. By using video you can get across the idea that your book is cross-genre. The benefit to that is, if someone was turned off by, say, a sexy book cover, they may change their mind when they see all the action/adventure play out on screen. And still, you can show an element of romance or some other genre as well to appeal to a wider audience.
- Name recognition. How many times do you have to see or hear a name before the typical person recalls it? Well, with video you have the chance of having your name pop up online more often when you have a video. Your name goes into the video description, so you can search that, and it is in the video itself.
- Engages the viewer. Statistics from various sources tend to agree that video is more engaging since the viewer must activate a video player before they can watch the video. They choose to watch. Unlike TV where commercials are presented to you, like it or not. Then, they are engaged by watching the video as well. They can then choose to comment, put it on their own site or email it. It’s a “word-of-mouth tool” that can be passed from one person to another, making it viral.
- Multi-utilization. With a COS video, not only can you have it spread all over the internet and given to booksellers to use, but it can be formatted for television and movie theaters. These are some of the least expensive television commercials being made right now. And our contacts with Comcast have made it extremely affordable to buy TV spots. A deal we have with a movie theater chain lets us put our specially formatted videos on the big screen in such desirable areas as New York City and Los Angeles for very reasonable rates. We have one video play in NYC over 900 times for approximately $2000. Some budgets are even smaller. The video can also be sent to sales people and in press kits.
- Cost-effective. For the price of a small print ad in the New York Times you can have a live action book trailer. For the price of a small print ad in most magazines you can have a mini teaser (non-live action video). It has more uses and re-uses than any print ad ever will.
- Target-audience opportunity. You can target established readers by putting the video on your website, blog, MySpace, specialty-sites (genre specific), Reader’s Entertainment TV, bookseller sites and book club sites. You can also target an audience not by what sex they are or where they live, but by what specific topics they have an interest in. If someone is interested in cave pearls, dragons, the military, wizards, magic, playing poker, ballroom dancing, fashion, New York City or any other numerous topics of interest, their search can lead them straight to a book video. Here you have someone already interested in the topic the book is about, or has elements of. People searching for specific interests but not specifically books, are what we term “potential readers.” Imagine how the book industry would do if more people turned to books for entertainment! We now have a tool that can help that happen.
- Fun! Music videos are ads. People tend to forget that because of how entertaining they are. Book trailers are not meant to look like commercials. They are meant to appeal to a person’s sense of fun and entertainment. That’s why people are willing to pass them around or put them on their own sites. Anyone putting together a commercial that is nothing but a book cover and an announcement has missed the boat entirely!
Sheila Clover English is the CEO of Circle of Seven Productions and a novelist. She lives in Kentucky with her husband, daughter, son, and three very silly dogs.