Indie Authors: Using YouTube

Video can be a very important component of an indie author’s marketing strategy. In addition to book trailers, authors can make videos for a myriad of purposes, such as

  • Behind the scenes
  • Showing off research that went into the book
  • Interviews
  • Having actors play characters or scenes
  • Explaining concepts (for nonfiction books)
  • Animating themes or concepts

Explaining concepts, in particular, can be a great way to attract viewers (who may become readers). Brainy Marketer has an excellent post on why these types of videos are so good, but basically they are short, usually animated videos that really engage viewers because they are entertaining, get to the point, and have calls to action at the end (such as, “Buy this book to learn more).

YouTube

Although there are other options for where to post your video, YouTube probably makes the most sense for most people.

Because Google owns YouTube, videos that are properly indexed (meaning have good metadata) tend to be highly ranked and easily found. This means you should put a lot of thought into your title, subtitle, categories, and description. Having solid keywords relating to your content can really help. Author Marketing Experts also offers six ways to promote your YouTube channel, which includes getting a custom channel and annotating your channel.

If you get enough hits on YouTube, you can earn money via their advertising program. YouTube has also recently started a subscription service, where users can pay a monthly fee for access to videos without ads. Although the service is geared towards music videos, high quality videos showing other kinds of content may also be successful.

Have you seen success with videos? Please share in the comments!

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