How much for a trailer?

Everybody’s first question to me is “how much for a game trailer?” My response is always, “What kind of a trailer do you want?”

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Think of your trailer like a vehicle — after all, your trailer is the vehicle for your game online. So how much is a vehicle? You might find a used scooter for a few hundred, but you probably want a fully-equipped SUV that will cover you in any situation — which starts at a much higher price point.

Know what kind of vehicle you want? Great. Now we can figure out what kind of vehicle you can afford.

How much for a FULLY EQUIPPED Trailer?

These trailers are loaded. In this Tesla Model X of game trailers, just provide your game and I’ll take care of everything trailer-related. Sit back in the plush leather seating — that empowers you in the last string of crunch before your baby releases into the game-o-sphere. You pay for a quality ride.

Price: $$$$

My That Dragon, Cancer trailer shows this in motion.

How much for a CUSTOM Trailer (where devs capture the footage)?

You captured the game footage yourself (and you might even have an idea for how to use it). I take care of everything from there — so you can get back to jamming on your game. You get the performance and qualities of a FULLY EQUIPPED trailer, but you take the edge off of the production cost. You pay for a collaborative ride.

Price: $$$

Ecotone’s Early Access trailer serves as an example.

How much for a LIVE  Trailer (with real players)? 

You want to know how people experience your game, so I put your game in front of real players. They play the game on camera (with sound) while I capture their in-game experience. I showcase their emotional highs and lows, providing the truest sense of what your game is like. Couch multiplayer and stream-friendly games come across brilliantly in this setting. Plus, your audience gets to experience true human emotion. You pay for an authentic ride.

Price: $$$$$

Case in point? My Threshold’s trailer.

How much for a consultation?

You don’t need somebody to make a trailer for you, but you do need a trailer expert to make sure your trailer kicks people where it counts. I’ll provide my trailer expertise at the cost of my time. You pay for expert advice.

Price: $

When do you give me a real dang number?

Let’s sit down. Tell me what kind of ride you want, and I’ll draw up an estimate. Reach out to me at mjoshua@mjoshua.com, on Skype at m..joshua.cauller, or you can call me directly at 717.201.5278. Also, sign up for my newsletter, where you’ll get all kinds of trailer tips and insights:


Everything

meI promise that you’ll walk away from this video with some super rich insights on how to make your game’s trailer, but good googly moogly, was this not a good day to test-drive that shirt. It looks like I have no neck! Still, devs tell me they got a ton of ultra-golden keys to trailer production out of it, so I hope you get a truckload too.

Everything devs need to know about trailers

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Gamasutra

I want you to have the best indie game trailer resources—especially a guide on how to make trailers around the player’s emotional journey.

Screenshot 2016-04-18 08.36.27

Here’s an assortment of my very best Gamasutra contributions. Enjoy!

1. Make trailers that capture the player’s emotional journey

The best and most-powerful game trailers toss us through a ringer of ups and downs. That rapid-fire assault of emotional intensity is what grabs us. It’s what makes us say, “I want that.” The thing is, most game trailers forget the player’s emotions.

2. Best indie game trailers of Q1 2016

The best game trailers distill your interactive experience into a non-interactive shorthand that feels like shadow of something greater. These trailers bridge that player-shadow gap very well.

3. Your game’s trailer isn’t for you

Being careful doesn’t sell a game. Taking risks does. Fierce space-action [in the trailer] sold me on Galak-Z even though it wasn’t accurate to my experience with the game… You’d rather see what happens when the crap hits the fan. Fan-crap-spray sells games.

4. Best indie game trailers of 2015

Since starting to make indie game trailers, I’ve learned that the best ones make you want to play regardless of whether or not the game is fun. Not only do these trailers do this by captivating our longings and our fears, but all of them do this exceptionally well.

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Schooled

Super-good marketing training materials are like secrets in Mario games—abundant, but you just gotta know where to look. My trailers are on the right track, but I know there’s a lot of room for refinement.

Justin (not me)

Justin Carroll (not me)

Meet Justin Carroll.

Fortunately I come across rad folks like Justin Carroll (of Monastery) who have sage advice on how to super-charge your stuff. Here’s what he said:

Do your homework.

Add these key resources your news feed (I use Feedly) and read up, son!

  1. The SeanWes Podcast.
  2. Copywriting masters at copyhackers.com.
  3. Ramit Sethi at doubleyourfreelancing.com and growthlab.com.
  4. Reddit’s r/gamedev group also does Marketing Monday giddyups.
  5. Everything on gamasutra.com.
Me (not Justin — though I realize all white guys with beards and fauxhawks look a lot alike)

M. Joshua (me)

“Start a blog,” he says.

Yes. I’ll do that.

Teach how to do what I do (make game trailers).

Indie game devs are DIYers at heart. I can’t under-estimate this. They only pay for two things: how to learn, and services that are better/faster than they can do on their on. I think I got the latter of these things, but it’s time to gear-up for the former. SeanWes made a killing off of teaching people how to do hand-lettering. There’s a good chance I could slay folks too if I sell training on how to make game trailers (especially ones that capture the player’s heart). To use an old cliche, I could catch fish or teach fishing.

Email-market the snot out of this

Forget every other form of social media and just focus on building your email list. Then send the best and most valuable stuff you’ve got. Be lavish. The easiest way to do this is to build tools that offer value to indie devs who are making DIY trailers. So this is what I’m gonna do. You want good free stuff?

“Oh, and don’t forget call-to-actions!”

Great idea: Sign-up!


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