Successful authors have a major secret. Today I’m going to share that secret with you. Your book cover is the most critical design element there is. It doesn’t matter if you have an award-winning title and the best-written book on the planet. If your book cover sucks, no one will buy it. I know that sounds rough, but it’s the truth, unfortunately. You see, we’re so inundated with advertising that it takes people 14 times before they start paying attention to an ad. So we need to stand out from the crowd. How do you do this? Well, I’m going to show you how.
- It’s Not About You:
First and foremost, you must remember that your book cover is not about you. It is about your reader. I know that’s obvious. But unfortunately, too many new writers design a book cover they liked, but the book doesn’t sell very well, and they don’t understand why. Remember. The reader has not read your book. Many authors try to get clever with their book cover designs. The cover is what causes the reader to pick up your book in the first place. Keep it very simple.
- Connect to the Reader’s Emotion:
Remember to connect to the reader’s emotion. It doesn’t matter what your genre, the image on the cover should make an emotional connection with your potential reader. If you can connect to them on this level, they will be more encouraged to open the book and start reading.
- Avoid the Clutter:
Avoid cluttering up the cover of your book with excess information, excess images, and various fonts. You do not want your book to look like a scrapbook. You want it to look professional. It means no collages, no random shapes, and only use at the most two different fonts. You need to save the calligraphy and all of the fun swirly fonts for another day.
- Highlight Key Words:
Choose which words you want to emphasize by using various colors, fonts, and sizes. You don’t have to make the entire title one color. For instance, in a video I made on the subject, I mentioned the book by Michael Franzese named BloodCovenant. His book cover is great, but I would have made the word “blood” red instead of white if I were designing it. This change would have drawn the reader’s attention to the most emotionally-charged word on the page.
- The Blink Test:
Finally, I suggest you use Derek Murphy’s blink test. If you can look at a cover for five seconds or less and still get a basic understanding of the topic, then you’ve done a good job. If it takes longer, then you might want to reconsider your choices.
- Keep It Simple:
Always keep the design simple. Don’t use too many colors. Don’t use more than two fonts. And definitely, don’t use more than a couple of pictures. If you would like more information on book cover design, check out my YouTube series on the subject, or you can check out my author coaching at Synova’s Simply Biz Facebook Group.
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