Using video to promote your book

The internet is the end of print media! We know that’s not true. In fact, the internet is a great tool to promote print media, especially books.

James Morton Turner is a professor at Wellesley College in Massachusetts and the author of a new book titled “The Promise of Wilderness: American Environmental Politics since 1964.” Kind of sounds like a snoozer, right? Maybe…but Turner is a savvy marketer. He’s created a YouTube video to promote his book that not only helps bring the book’s subject matter to life, but it reveals the author’s personality as well:

The images in Turner’s video add context and color to his words. When he talks about seeing a sign at the Dolly Sods wilderness in West Virginia that warn of unexploded World War II ordinance, and you see the sign with LIVE BOMBS printed in bright red, you can’t help but shake your head in disbelief. The silhouette of a bear against a purple-blue sky and a backpacker hiking through a mountain meadow all frame Turner’s dialogue.

Most verbal presentations can benefit from the presence of visual aids—the keyword being aids. Few things are as tedious as a presenter reading PowerPoint slides, but carefully chosen images can set the mood and reinforce the ideas the presenter is trying to convey. Images of Lyndon Johnson signing the Wilderness Act with smiling members of Congress strengthen Turner’s statement that even though wilderness has pitted Americans against one another, it has also brought them together at important moments in history. When Turner speaks of Alaska, a sea kayaker with towering mountains on the horizon lends something tangible to what many of us view as a far-off, foreign place.

The images are interspersed with shots of Turner speaking before a camera, likely seated at his desk in his office. Naturescapes hang framed on the wall behind him. Combined with his youthful looks accented with a touch of gray at the temples, Turner speaks intelligently and enthusiastically about his work, making it clear that the topic excites him. He appears young enough to be likable and appear passionate, while old enough to know what he’s talking about.

If you’re considering ways to promote your book, consider video. Trade Press Services can help at each step in the book-writing process. Call us today at (805) 496-8850 or e-mail

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