How To Make Your Book Cover Or DVD Stand Out

As I mentioned in my post on using photographs in your press releases, photographs are still very important today. Even with all the growth of online video and music, physical DVDs and CDs are still around and so is the need for the packaging art that comes with them.

One of our professionally designed DVD covers and discs

Videos are not the only way people are digesting information. There’s still the old-fashioned written word. You’re reading this aren’t you?

Photos can say so much, and you can’t put videos in books or on your CD or DVD covers.

If you’ve been reading this blog regularly, you’ll notice that if we don’t have a video to share, we always include an image or two in our blog posts. Not only do they act as illustrations, statistics show that people will read and share your posts more when there are images. It may be the attraction to get you to read further.

The same is true with DVD, CD and book covers.

They say you can’t judge a book by its cover, but that is exactly what we do. The title and copy on the DVD or book are very important but having a good strong cover image will grab a person’s attention. That, along with the title, are what draws me to pick up a video or book I’ve never seen before. Do you find that true for you?


Here’s an example of one of our eBooks

In the digital world, you want to do the same with your digital video downloads and eBooks. We’ve done testing on the eReader books we publish and found that adding a nice cover photo increased our sales dramatically. You also want to always include an enticing description as well.

Adding images to the reports you sell or giveaway takes them to a more professional level and it isn’t hard or expensive to do. Many stock photography sites like Dreamstime have a large collection of free images you may use. If one of those doesn’t appeal to you, spending a few more dollars will get you what you are looking for.

We use Photoshop to add titles and copy to make our eBook and DVD covers. If you don’t have access to Photoshop, another good option to use is which is an open source free downloadable software.

If you’re going to self-publish a printed book or DVD, I strongly recommend hiring professionals to design your cover. That is one area where investing in your image will truly set you apart from the rest.

Want to Sell Your Videos? You Must Learn How To Do This…

Selling your special interest videos – sell the “sizzle” and not just the “steak.”

Selling your special interest videos – you have to sell the “sizzle” to sell the “steak.”

Over the last several posts, we’ve been sharing our model to make money with your videos. In the last post we answered this question, “How has the business of producing and selling your own videos changed due to the internet?” In this one, we’re going to start to address the one thing you must learn how to do to successfully sell your videos…marketing!

Keep This Key Marketing Concept In Mind

You have to learn to sell the “sizzle” to sell the “steak”. Just what do I mean by that?

If you are going to set up an eCommerce site, you will need to drive customers to your site. I’ve learned the hard way that just because you put a website out there, it doesn’t mean droves of people will find it and come running with money in hand to buy your stuff. As in any business (service or product basis, online or brick and mortar), you have to market, advertise and promote your website and your product line too.

Marketing to a potential customer is not that different from marketing to a client or another business. You can use all avenues, such as advertising, networking, PR, etc., but to make it the most effective you have to keep this key marketing concept in mind – you need to step into the customer’s shoes and ask, “Is this something I want? Why would I buy it?” You need to sell the benefit of watching your video and answer the question, “What’s in it for me?” That’s what gets people excited about buying your video.

For example, assume your video is on an innovative technique you discovered on losing weight and you’ve gone so far as outlining your target market and found that there was a good market out there of people looking for the answer to losing weight. That’s a great start!

However, before you start marketing, think about this; these people are not really buying “losing weight”. What they want is the BENEFITS losing weight gives them – i.e., they look good, they feel good, their health improves, etc. So, keeping that in mind, when you determine the benefit for your viewer, you can work in both the problem and the solution your video provides in your marketing copy.

For instance your copy can read:

Frustrated because the scale has been stuck at the same number for MONTHS no matter WHAT you do? In this DVD, you’ll learn the SECRET for smashing through that plateau and getting back on the weight loss track.

See how this is much more powerful and enticing than the following copy that focuses strictly on the features of what is included in the video:

In this hour long exercise video, you will be shown exercises and given weight loss tips.

Pretty boring and not really convincing is it?

If you want to produce and sell videos, today’s marketing and delivery trends definitely make it easier for you than in the past. Video has exploded on the market and I feel that the reason it holds such a dominant place in our society is because it is a powerful way to learn and experience the world.

In fact, I’ve read that one third of the population are visual learners. Given that and the fact that engaging all senses in the education process greatly enhances learning, may explain why many people would rather watch a video than read a book. That you can now reach your audience more quickly, economically and profitably presents fabulous opportunities for you to get started in the non-fiction video publishing business today.

So how can you get started? Signing up for our newsletter is definitely a start. If you haven’t purchased our book, Shoot To Sell: Make Money Producing Special Interest Videos, now is the time to do it. (If you’re in the U.S., we offer free shipping!)

If you’re really ready to roll up your sleeves and start working, then the Special Interest Video Academy is the way to go. This is our 16 week intensive program that will take you from idea generation through getting your video on the market. We also offer individualized coaching if that is what you need. (Note: if you sign up for the Gold Level, you’ll get 1 hour of individualized coaching for FREE, a $300 value, basically paying for the course.)

How Does The Internet Affect Making Money With Your Videos?


This past month, we’ve been sharing our model to make money with your videos. Last week we shared how you can add to your bottom line with other people’s products.

By now you are seeing how selling special interest videos (or as it’s called in the industry, video publishing) even on a small scale, can create freedoms you could never have before, possibly allowing you to quit the job that’s not fulfilling, saying good-bye to clients you no longer wish to work with, taking fantastic holidays with your family, paying off your mortgage, and best of all, getting paid well to do something you enjoy.

One of the advances that has changed your capacity to do just that is The Internet Age!

The internet has brought with it some exciting and far reaching opportunity in this business of producing, distributing and marketing your videos. It has made it possible for anyone to enter this industry…not just companies with big pockets.

It Has Leveled The Playing Field

When I started in this industry, the primary way you reached your customers was through distributors, catalog publishing and direct mail campaigns. If you didn’t want to work exclusively with distributors, you were basically in the mail order business. The former eats into your profit margin and the latter two are very expensive and prohibitive for the small producer.

The internet has leveled that playing field. With the advent of internet marketing, i.e., email, SEO, blogging, pay-per click advertising, and social media, there are much more economical and new marketing avenues for the small producer.

It Has Lowered Your Overhead Costs

No longer do we have to rely on having a human answer the phone or open mail to take orders. Now about 98% of our orders come in online. Many of them arrive overnight or while we’re away from the office. We rarely have to talk to a customer, although we maintain a toll-free number.

When you offer downloadable products, it gets even better! The customer gets the video immediately and you get payment directly into your bank account with no time or money spent packaging, shipping or handling. This is the business model we have been moving to.

It Has Given You Improved Research Tools

The internet also changes the way you can research and reach your target market. Although it takes commitment, time and work to produce and sell your own videos, the key to being successful is to pick the right topic, have a well-targeted audience and a good marketing strategy and you do that through research.

Along with all the positive changes brought about by the internet age, there are some special challenges it has brought to this field, specifically the proliferation of all the free videos now available and how to stay current on the technology.

After you’ve decided on your topic and type of video to produce, there’s one more key step…selling them! When you’re selling your special interest videos, how do you market for best results?

Next we’ll be talking about where most people trip up in that part of this business…marketing!