A book trailer is one of the most exciting ways to market and promote your book. It can make your fiction novel come to life for potential readers, or entice someone to try the recipes in your cookbook. But if you don’t have the skills, software, or equipment to make a book trailer on your own, how much can you expect to pay for someone to create a book trailer for you? What does a book trailer cost?
The short answer: it varies.
The cost of a simple text-on-screen book trailer is going to be much different from a highly cinematic book trailer that feels more akin to a short film. The good news is there’s a book trailer solution for every author, no matter what budget you’re working with. Keep reading to see a breakdown of what you can expect to pay for a book trailer depending on your budget.
Book Teasers for $500‒$1,000 Budgets
For authors who are just starting out and don’t have as much marketing budget to spend on a book trailer, book teasers are the best solution. A book teaser is a short clip with titles, music, and maybe additional graphics or voice-over. Though it may seem simple, the text and music can quickly convey the mood and concept of your book to entice potential readers—all without breaking the bank. These videos are great to use on your website, social media accounts, or in digital ads to drive book preorders or sales. They also work well as “coming soon” teasers ahead of a more elaborate trailer if you really want to create hype around a book.
Book Teasers for $1,500‒$3,500 Budgets
For authors with a bit more budget to spend, book teasers can be stepped up a notch. In addition to titles and music, these jazzed up book trailers can also include graphics, voice over, or animations to help convey your book’s story to potential audiences. Animations in particular can lend more to your book teaser by creating a mood or adding eye-catching motion that will keep viewers watching—which is especially important if you’re planning to use a teaser trailer as a digital ad for your book!
Book Trailers for $4,000‒$5,000 Budgets
This is where things start to get fun! Authors dreaming of seeing their books come to life with actors portraying their characters typically opt for a standard book trailer like this. Though they’re created with a small-scale production, these trailers still have the same attention to quality, detail, and artistry that you might see in a large-scale production—just on a budget. Much like book teasers, these book trailers can be used on websites, social media, and in digital ads, but they’re also great to use at author events or when giving a presentation to share what your book is about.
Book Trailers for $6,000-$8,000 Budgets
Now production can be stepped up a notch. Mid-level production book trailers like these tend to be the most popular. If there’s a book trailer you saw online and absolutely loved, chances are it fell in this budget range. These trailers tend to stand out and make your book more memorable since their production value is higher than standard book trailers. This means you’ll have more impact when using these book trailers in ads or presentations meant to capture a reader’s attention. Similarly, you could get a smaller budget ($4,000‒$5,000) trailer and then add on an additional short trailer or two. Perhaps you do a teaser and a book trailer, or a book trailer with additional character trailers to introduce the main players. You could also have a book trailer plus “trailergrams” tailor-made for Instagram’s unique video format—perfect for when your main audience lives on Instagram.
Book Trailers for $10,000+ Budgets
This is the crème de la crème, the pièce de résistance of book trailers. These are the highest production value trailers that use state-of-the-art cameras, experienced cast and crew, special effects if needed, a scripted treatment, the whole nine yards. If you want your readers saying “Wow, I can’t wait for the book to become a movie!” then this is the book trailer you’re looking for. With a book trailer of this caliber you’ll want to show it everywhere—your website, social media, digital ads, social media ads, author events…heck, maybe even when pitching your book as a possible movie if that’s your goal. At this budget level you could also decide to do a mid-level trailer ($6,000‒$8,000) with a few additional trailers, like character trailers, blurb trailers to showcase great reviews, or “trailergrams” to use on Instagram. Similarly, you could commission a teaser trailer, a mid-level trailer, and a character trailer. This is where you can really start to mix and match to roll out the precise marketing strategy for your book and attract the ideal readers.
Don’t Forget the Advertising Budget!
Having a book trailer is super exciting, but when choosing what level of book trailer you need, don’t forget to calculate your advertising budget. After all, a $10,000 book trailer won’t generate any additional sales for you if no one sees it, and sometimes just posting a video to YouTube or a social media account doesn’t generate enough views on its own to translate into sales. To make sure you’re getting the most out of your book trailer’s distribution, you’ll want to set aside a portion of your marketing budget to promote your book trailer. If you have a basic teaser trailer, this could mean $100‒$1,000 to set aside for YouTube, Google, or Facebook ad campaigns you run on your own. However, if you have a standard book trailer, you might want to set aside anywhere between $1,000‒$5,000+ for advertising campaigns, whether you run them yourself, or hire a marketer or your book trailer production studio to run the ad campaigns for you. Once you’ve accounted for your advertising and production budgets, you’re ready to pursue your book trailer and set your book up for success!
If you enjoyed this post, check out Tempt-ational Tips for Book Trailer Makers!
Megan Barlog loves great stories, be they books, movies, TV shows, or anything in between! She has studied both creative writing and screenwriting, and worked for both a library and a major NYC publisher. When she’s not writing a novel or screenplay, she’s probably out for a run or binge-watching something on Netflix.
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What do book trailers cost?
The slideshow variety book trailers run anywhere from $99 to $1000. Live-action cinematic book trailers range between $2500 all the way up to $50,000 in some cases. The average cost for a cinematic book trailer with real actors is $5,000-$7,000.