Book Trailers create more sales?
John Wannamaker, department
store magnate (and inventor of the price tag) said, “I know fifty
percent of my advertising works. If only I knew which fifty percent it
Even with the advent of Google
analytics and ethical modeling profiles now able to target consumers
more precisely, we’ll never know exactly what causes a purchase. Why?
Because the buyers don’t even know.
“I got your number from the
“Really? And what got you to
the yellow pages?”
For years yellow pages sales
people would coach their clients to ask calling customers, “Where did
you get our phone number?” The customer would of course reply, “From
the yellow pages.”
“See!” the yellow page sales
person proclaimed. “The yellow pages are doing a great job advertising
Uh, no. The yellow pages are a
phone book where people look up phone numbers. They don’t shop there.
(Studies show the 62 to 80 percent of people who still use the yellow
pages already know the name of the company they want to call when they
open the book.)
The real question is “What made
them want your number in the first place?” A difficult question to
“I found you on the Web.”
Really? Cool. What got you to the Web?
I’ve had customers of my clients
compliment my TV ads when all I’m doing for the client is radio, and
Customers don’t pay attention to
the meandering three-day path or maybe three-year path that got them to
a decision point about buying your book or not.
Why did I sign up for
Before I signed up for Randy
Ingermanson’s e-zine, I’d seen mentions of him online, bought a few of
his books, met him at a conference, and had a friend recommend his Web
site. Which sales message made me sign up?
All, of course. I liked Randy’s
writing. After meeting him, I was impressed with him as a person. I
trusted the recommendation of the friend who talked about Randy’s
But if someone surveyed me and
asked, “What made you sign up for Randy’s e-zine?” I’d probably answer
with how the last impression of Randy was made on me. “Oh, a friend of
mine told me I should sign up.”
The dutiful survey taker would
make a checkmark next to word of mouth. Not a fully accurate answer.
is the reason focus groups are largely a waste of money.
Sitting in a sterile environment
next to six or seven other people who “fit the demographic profile” of
a business’s customer, with researchers tossing out questions . . . do
you really think people can accurately predict what they would
people buy with emotion and back it up with logic.
Focus groups are logical. Real spending of your denari in a real life
situation isn’t. (For a deeper look at the vast difference between what
people say they’re going to do and what they actually do, see Malcolm
Gladwell’s book BLINK.)
Sitting behind a two-way mirror,
advertisers think they’re getting deep insight into their potential
customer’s mind. That’s the problem. A potential customer is never an
accurate representation of a true customer. The person who can give you
the most accurate information is the person who has already purchased.
And even they can’t be completely correct.
Marketing 101 says people have
to hear a message three times to respond. First time = awareness.
Second message = understanding. Third message = action. (I think it’s
closer to seven, but that’s another topic.) The point is those three
messages might come from unrelated sources.
Okay, Jim, I get it.
What about Book Trailers?
Should you do a Book Trailer? If
your publisher will do a good one for you,
absolutely. If you have the skill to do a good one
yourself, go for it. If you have the coin to hire someone to make a good
one, do it. (See last month’s column for guidelines on
producing a good trailer.)
But if none of the above apply,
don’t sweat it. I’ve always preached to my clients that it’s far better
to have 100 percent of the people in a small pond know all about them,
than have 10 percent of the people in a large one only vaguely aware of
their products and services.
In other words, whatever pond
you decide to own (Facebook, blogging,
Twitter, your Web site, radio, TV, Book Trailers, YouTube videos,
articles, speaking, interviews, etc.)—and you can’t own them all—own it
all the way. Make the content stellar. And be there consistently.
Everything you do is part of a
marking tapestry, and to pull out the individual threads is not a task
attainable by mortals.
So do Book Trailers help sell
Yep, 50 percent of the time.