Creating a promotional video for your book can help you market your text to instructors in an engaging and highly personal way. We appreciate your willingness to explore this medium, and the Cognella marketing team is happy to support your efforts and provide guidance. Based on the final product you create, our team will determine how we can best use it in promotions for your book.
If you’d like to try making your own videos, here are some best practices to consider:
Before you begin filming, carefully consider and test your audio and visual equipment. Whether using an app on a smartphone or professional recording equipment, setting up a clean and well-lit backdrop, creating high-quality visuals (PPT slides, etc.), and ensuring you have a quiet space to record will improve your end result. If your video is not clear or there is competing background noise, we may recommend that you re-record your video or make adjustments.
Make sure to have your book handy! When you introduce yourself in the beginning of your video, hold up your book so your audience can easily recognize your work after viewing. This practice also allows for the creation of a polished, professional, and relevant still frame that can be used as the preview image for your video.
Determine the scope and length of your video. If you’d like to do a quick pitch, 90 seconds or less is optimal. Your ultimate goal with a quick pitch is to pique interest and then provide instructors with options to learn more. Think of it as a commercial for your book.
If you’d like to create a video that provides more robust and detailed content (for example, how certain chapters address key competencies/skillsets or how you’d assign chapters or readings for a semester-long course), less than 10 minutes of engaging, valuable material is a good goal. If you feel you may exceed 10 minutes, we recommend creating multiple videos that could serve as a short series.
As a best practice, do not include any third-party materials in your video, including images, music, film, etc. These types of materials are often subject to copyright and permissions, especially within the context of marketing and promotion. Instead of including visuals, focus on your script and connecting with your audience. If your video contains third-party materials, we may ask you to remove them or re-record. If you have any questions about what to include or not include, feel free to ask our team!
Speak beyond your promotional/back cover copy. Rather than reciting the promotional copy we’ve prepared for your book, provide instructors with fresh insights and information. What are its unique pedagogical features or topical areas? How can this text support students in a course? If you’re publishing a new edition, how has the content changed, and why are the updates valuable?
Take the opportunity to share how instructors can find your book in the Cognella Title Catalog and request a digital review copy. This provides viewers with a clear call-to-action and ensures our adoption team can follow-up with instructors who may have interest in using your title. Here are some quick instructions geared specifically toward instructors:
To request a digital review copy of the book:
1) Go to titles.cognella.com;
2) Search for the book by title, author, or ISBN (you can provide these specific details in your video);
3) Click on the button that says “Digital Review Copy.”
4) Confirm you are an instructor, fill out the short form, and a digital review copy will be emailed directly to you.
If you have any questions about the text or want to learn more about format and delivery options for your students, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, and a Cognella adoption specialist will be in touch.
Practice, practice, practice. Write a script or create talking points. Read everything aloud off camera a few times so that you’ll be that much more comfortable on camera. Test your audio and visual components to ensure your lighting and sound are at the right levels. Record multiple takes, so you can determine your best delivery. The more polished, the better!
When the video has been reviewed and finalized by the marketing team, we’ll post a link to the video on the title page of your book in the Cognella Title Catalog. We’ll also share the video via our social media platforms (Facebook and Twitter) and potentially use the video in special email marketing campaigns.