Alex Rider: Spying Marketing Strategies

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As an adolescent one of my favorite book series were the Alex Rider books by Anthony Horowitz. I discovered them by first watching the movie and after falling in love with the story, decided to pursue the written version as well.

For those who don’t know, Alex Rider is an action packed spy novel based on the story of a reluctant fourteen year old British agent. The books were suspenseful and interesting, never failing to keep me involved. I was hooked on them and followed them all the way to the end of the series.

Looking back at the books it is interesting to consider how the marketing of them affected me. The movie was what first got my attention. This method of marketing does seem to be rather effective. The making of a book into a movie is not only a sign that the book was a success, but a reason for those who haven’t already read it to do so before (or in my case after) they view the film.

Other factors behind it may have been the covers with intense looking backgrounds and a simple symbol on the front to represent the adventure. Once within the book the fast paced plotline kept me going much as it had in the movie.

As the last book, Scorpia Rising, came closer to release there was a good deal of advertising that went into it. Though I didn’t need such hype over the book (because I had eagerly been awaiting it for more than a year) the methods used were interesting when considering how marketing affects a book.

One particularly interesting method was the use of book trailers posted online. Those were the first video trailers I had ever seen for a book, and while somewhat cheesy and simplistically animated, they were very effective in drawing me in at the time.

Marketing is a fascinating part of the literary world. Book trailers have been particularly popular in the last few years. They are a good way to interest readers to pursue a book due to their compelling nature. They provide a visual and often tease at plot elements to come. As an Alex Rider fan I remember sitting on the edge of my chair as I watched the first of the three trailers. The mysterious music, the small hinting plot developments, the dramatic phrase: “one bullet. One life”.

How has marketing affected you as a reader? What do you think of book trailers? These aspects of writing never fail to interest me. I’d love to hear your thoughts too.

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