Daily Archives: March 30, 2012

What makes a great trailer? – Audience development for the arts

Today I was in a YouTube kinda mood.  Instead of posting here, I invite you to view my recently updated YouTube Gallery This time, we are highlighting some fantastic examples of trailers for the arts.  Trailers are not just for movies anymore.  With the online video craze, trailers can be made for any type of art and arts organization to promote an upcoming event.

So you want your trailer to be viewed by thousands of people.  What makes a great trailer that will stand out from the rest?  In viewing my samples, you will find some common points to all of these trailers:

  • They are all under 2 minutes.  Trailers that are longer than 3 minutes can lose the audience’s attention.  We are busy people, so try to keep your trailer 2 minutes and under if you can.  Only go toward a 3 minute trailer if the content absolutely keeps us attentive.  I suggest testing on a few people in any case to make sure it is compelling for the time frame you have chosen.
  • They have images that draw you in.  You want to see more.
  • They are of good quality and they download easily.  It is frustrating when the video is slow to load and the viewing quality is poor.
  • The background music fits and is not annoying.  There have been YouTubes I have stopped simply because the music was disturbing to me (in one way or another).
  • The YouTubes fit the branding of the artist/company.
  • There is an attention to detail that is apparent from start to finish.
  • The focus is on the sampler and not the information, yet the information is readily available if you want more.
  • They focus on what they do best.
  • They highlight one or more memorable features of the events.

If you can think of more points for what makes a great trailer, please do share by replying below.  It is becoming easier to create an online video to share, and there are new audiences waiting to discover you and your next event. Trailers can make a huge difference when they are done right!

Have a great weekend!

Cheers to happy and loyal audiences,

Shoshana Fanizza

Audience Development Specialists



“Never treat your audience as customers, always as partners.”
~James Stewart

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