Writing a book is an intense and creative endeavor that many of us enjoy because we are creative people, but sometimes that creativity doesn’t flow through to other aspects of our book. We don’t always see the bigger picture, which often gives us permission to turn our creativity off for other aspects of our books.
Your creativity should flow through your research, writing, and even the marketing process before and after your book is published. We are firm believers that your marketing plan should start long before you publish your book, and we’ve put together a list of three things you might not realize have the ability to boost your marketing efforts.
1—Your book title must grab your reader’s attention within seconds.
The title of your book is one of the first things a reader will see when they see your book on a shelf in a bookstore or in a search on your favorite book retailer’s website. There are several aspects to a book title that can inspire readers to take a closer look at your book:
- Is it unique? Before you decide on your final book title, do a search online and see if you can find an identical one already being sold. If you vow to go above and beyond to create a unique title, you won’t run the risk of others mistaking your book for theirs and vice versa.
- Is it descriptive? Your readers need to get a general idea of what your book is about when they first see your book title. If you’ve written a science-fiction novel and your title screams romance, you might have a problem. You don’t want to let down any potential loyal readers by giving them the wrong idea. Though the mixups are never intentional, we need to be aware of how people might react to our title before committing to it.
- Does it have that wow factor? When someone sees your book title, you want them to think, Wow! I need to know what this book is about! You can get this wow factor by making it cute, interesting, funny, shocking, or thought-provoking. Any of these qualities in a book title will make a reader stop and seriously consider purchasing your book.
2—Your cover design should be researched, planned, and strategic.
Right along with the title of your book, your cover design is going to be one of the first things your reader notices. For this reason, you should do several things to ensure it conforms to your book and your reader’s interests:
- Have you researched your genre? When readers are big fans of a particular genre, they know what that genre’s covers typically look like, and so should you. By looking at popular books in your genre, you’ll be able to pull out specific elements that those best-selling covers have. When you figure out what they are, write them down so you can communicate with your designer what you need. And if you find one that really grabs you, save it on your computer to show your designer when you start that process.
- What do you want your cover to look like? Within those guidelines you discovered in your research, think about how you’d like your cover to look. Write those ideas down so your cover artist isn’t flying blind during the design process. If they don’t know what you want, it might take some time to get to a design you both agree is aesthetically pleasing.
- What do people think of your book cover? Once you have one or two designs to choose from, poll your friends, family members, and acquaintances and ask what their first impressions were of your cover. Consider their opinions when you make your final choice, but you should also keep in mind that you are the one who needs to be happy with your cover. You should also ask yourself, “What do I really think of my book cover?” Go with your gut instinct.
3—Your book should be edited by a professional editor.
Many people don’t think that this has anything to do with marketing, but if you think about it more, you’ll understand why it’s important when you start to market. Editing is vital when you start promoting your book for several reasons:
- Is your book mostly error-free? If a new reader catches too many errors in your first book, they might not be inclined to purchase your second book—or even finish reading the first one. For some readers, this may not be an issue, but for many others, they find it hard to trust an author who hasn’t hired a quality editor.
- Are there any parts of your book that might leave your readers wanting more? If someone purchased your book expecting to learn something specific and your book doesn’t deliver, that is likely where your writer-reader relationship will end. To avoid these sorts of problems, a great editor can serve as an objective eye to find those plot or content holes you might not see on your own.
- Is there any false or misleading information in your book? Of course, you don’t think so, but you don’t want to run the risk of your reader thinking so either. A professional editor can also help ensure that your facts, figures, and quotes are accurate and responsibly presented. If a reader senses that one little detail isn’t correct, that damages the trust they’ve put in you as an expert on your topic.
So, why does it all matter?
When you don’t have these three things working together to contribute to a more successful book launch, you have to work much harder to get noticed. All the experts say that we should work smarter and not harder, and that’s especially true when it comes to your book. When all the elements of your book are as flawless as they can be, they will help make your marketing efforts much easier.
When you have a book with a killer title, gorgeous cover, and brilliant editing, you have a powerful tool that will help you build a loyal audience.
If you have any questions about book titles, covers, or editing, we’d love to hear from you. Comment below and share with your author friends. We’d love to help you create a book you’re proud to promote!