Helping to make a bestseller


Last month our long-running relationship with Harper Collins saw a Red Bee team writing, producing and delivering the launch film for a new book.

Filming under Covid restrictions placed a challenge on the team, and one they met with customary skill, professionalism and concern for all the talent involved.

What was unusual about this particular book trailer, however, is that it was destined to be shown in the centre break of Coronation Street in prime time ITV (alongside other more traditional organic and paid social media streams).

Bringing the visual thinking and storytelling of TV and film dramas and documentary trailers to books has been a long-held passion at Red Bee. From the political thriller tropes of The President is Missing to the interactive real-world treasure hunt for Thomas Harris’ Cari Mora, from bus sides for BOSH! to capturing a writer’s warm personality in Alex Gregory’s Dadventures.

But how has a prime time media buy – which, on the surface, feels like a very brave step by a publisher - played out?

The book was Skincare by Caroline Hirons.

A wonderful book from a writer with a large, dedicated social following, it’s a warm, witty and wise take on looking after the largest organ in the human body – your skin.

The commercial and social posts were beautifully written and directed to capture Caroline’s personality, and brought her unique take on the importance of the topic without preaching. It may look very simple but, like most of the best advertising, it was a perfectly-crafted entertainment marketing campaign for smart insightful clients.

Skincare became the first Fashion and Beauty book in 18 years to top the Sunday Times Bestseller List.

8 weeks after publication it is still holding firm in the Amazon overall top ten bestsellers.

And yesterday it became officially the biggest skincare title of all time.

It’s proof that advertising still works, we’d like to think. And certainly proof that the book market can be as responsive to above-the-line TV exposure as any sector.

As Caroline herself would say: “Face facts. I’ve seen with my own eyes what works and what doesn’t”.

Charlie Mawer, Executive Creative Director

Image courtesy of @HQ Stories