Video Made the Author a Star!

by Marcus Chait, Director of New Media

In 1981, the debut of the music video changed the way artists promoted albums forever. It allowed viewers to put a face and narrative to the song, and gave artists the chance to forge an emotional connection with their audience. A generation was captivated, and the public bought albums in record numbers. Big stars got bigger, and new stars were catapulted to unseen heights of success. 

Fast forward to 2010. The Internet has made video more accessible than ever, and the publishing industry has taken notice.  Authors have to find a way to make their book stand out from the crowd, and I believe having a video component as part of your marketing campaign is a prime way of accomplishing that.

While a video can be one of your greatest assets when trying to attract the attention of readers, you need to be an active participant in the pre-production process to insure the best possible result.  Before securing a production team for your video, keep the following points in mind:

  1. Clear and Concise Messaging – It’s imperative that you understand the message you want to convey through your video prior to your production start date.  You should be able to verbalize your message to your production team so they understand the overall intent and goal of the video project.  If you don’t know what you’re trying to say, your production team won’t know how to say it.
  2. Creative Vision – Just as important as your message is the creative concept.  Make sure you are communicating your creative vision to your production team before filming begins.  There is nothing worse than reviewing your video project for the first time and realizing the creative vision is not what you had expected.
  3. Be Open to Change – While you are the foremost expert on your book, be open to the fact that your production team might have some useful insight to share when it comes to their area of expertise.  Sometimes the minutia that makes reading your book such a unique experience doesn’t play as well on film.  It’s understandably difficult for some authors to let go, but try to be open to suggestions as to how your book might play best on screen.
  4. Communication is Key – It may seem tedious, but the more information you can provide to your production team, the more successful your video will be.  If you’re given a questionnaire to fill out, be as specific as possible. Delivering as much detailed information as possible during the planning process is the most effective way for you to be a part of the creative and execution phases.  
  5. Have a Launch Plan – It’s critical to have a solid launch plan in place once production has wrapped.  Creating a well thought out marketing and launch strategy can be the difference between a handful of impressions versus thousands or maybe even hundreds of thousands of viewers.

Check out author Tom Duerig’s author video for his book, Stan’s Leap.

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