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 Video Marketing for Travel Books

Free Writing Course > Week 7 Make Your Mark > Video Marketing


How to use videos to promote your guidebook


Books were invented long before TV screens, and no one has yet found a way to include videos in books (well, other than bundling them with a DVD.) But while you cannot include videos in your guidebook, you can use them to promote your book. Shoot a few good videos of the places you cover, and we'll show you how you can use them to attract new readers for your guidebooks.



Shooting a video

Most compact cameras can shoot videos, and most of them in an acceptable quality. If you intend to shoot a lot of videos, consider investing in a camcorder or a compact photo camera with advanced video functions, such as High Definition (HD) quality and good compression algorithms to reduce space on the memory card. For our purposes, even the video quality of a good mobile phone should be sufficient. Shoot your videos in high-definition/high quality. You can still reduce the size later, for example when editing or even while uploading to services like YouTube.


Many shots will include some movement of the camera, very frequently this is a panning from left to right or vice versa. In any case, start the video by pausing at the beginning for about three seconds. You need to give your audience time to adjust to the scene and get an understanding of what they are looking at. After that, move on slowly and deliberately, stating the name of the place, followed by a narration. If you plan to edit the video later, even pause for ten seconds at the beginning - you can always cut out the additional time. Make another pause of about three seconds whenever you change the direction of the panning, and also at the end. During the last three seconds of your video, you should keep the same shot and have already concluded your narration. This helps your audience to reflect on what they saw.


Do not zoom. Unless you know exactly what you are doing, zooming will make your videos look amateurish. Take a look at professionally produced TV shows - you will notice that there is hardly any zooming. The pros take different shots and cut them together, but omit the long and boring zoom in between. If you really can't resist, then zoom out, not in. In this way, the viewer at least gets to see some more "content" while he waits.



How to put personality in your videos


In a world where videos are aplenty like viruses, stand out!


  • Be concise


Get to the details in 1-3 minutes. Prepare a speech and read it carefully. Enlist the help of others who are foreign to your topic in the video and ask if the information is too much or little.


  • Be confident


Be loud and speak as if you know what you are saying, even if otherwise. Sentences like “Erm, I think the palace has been around for erm, 1000 years?” paired with a weak smile, will not work. Also, maintain a confident posture – look straight and square your shoulders.


  • Be compelling


Be interesting, or at least act as if you are. Do not worry about how you look as you can make changes later. Rather, let loose and be yourself, with a desire to create an honest and remarkable travel video.



Editing videos for marketing purposes


Microsoft Windows has a built in video editing software called Movie Maker, on the Mac you have iMovie, and there is even a simple videoediting software bundled with the iPhone. If you spend some time to understand these tools, you will learn how to cut your videos to make them look even more professional. Don't use too many and too fancy transitions between different shots, though. Most professional videos use hard A/B cuts only.


From our perspective, even more important than cutting your video are overlays and ending credits. Use overlays to announce your guidebook or your website address within the video, and add ending credits with the same information.



Using your videos to promote your book


Now that you have a few good videos with credits to your guidebook, upload them to as many video portals as you can. The big one is of course youtube.com, but don't forget tripfilms.com and other platforms. A list of video platforms can be found at tubemogul.com - itself a paid service to automatically upload your videos to different platforms. Once uploaded and tagged with the right description and keywords, you can share the videos on Facebook, Twitter and other online communities. Of course, don't forget to add them to GuideGecko as well!


Many people do not actually watch your video on YouTube itself, but through an embedded player on third party websites. This is perfectly fine, and with overlays and ending credits, you can tell these viewers where they can find additional information and buy your guidebook.



Start shooting!


To polish your video skills, check out the suggested videos and video exercises. Happy shooting!


If you liked this chapter, also take a look at our free writing course with more marketing ideas for your guidebook.





More book marketing resources






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