Every element in your book’s creation affects how the public perceive it, and why they will or will not end up buying it. A person doesn’t read a book before they buy it, so they have to make a judgement based on the information available to them. Marketing elements you have control over and which are crucial to get right include:
Blurb – blurb is a book industry term for a short promotional piece written by the author and/or publisher. The blurb was originally printed on the back cover of books but blurbs are now found as product descriptions on booksellers’ websites. Look at some of your favourite books, or books similar to yours for ideas. The blurb should not be a simple description or a vague summary. It needs to be exciting, alluring, well-structured and informative but not revealing too much!
Biography – why should people trust you to entertain them?
Cover design – one of the most crucial elements. Look at your favourites/books similar to yours and find cover designs you like and which you want your book to look like.
Title and Subtitle – using keywords in your title/subtitle helps it show up in search results. If your title doesn’t include its main subject, add a subtitle which does, for example: Poppies, Pomp and People: A Year in the Life of the Tower of London.
Category – your category affects where your book will appear and what will appear next to it. You wouldn’t want ketchup placed next to socks. If your book is about computer science, you wouldn’t want it listed under fiction.
Tagline – one line which draws readers in, entices and intrigues!
Endorsements/review quotes – endorsements and reviews influence buyers, so getting these on your cover and in your blurb help massively.
Introduction/Preface – even online now people can ‘flick’ through the first few pages of your book using Amazon Search Inside just as they do in a bookshop. What will they read first? Make sure this section and your first few pages are the best they can be and thoroughly proofread and edited!
Typography and page layout – choosing the right font throughout the book including the title, chapter titles, image captions is important for the reader experience. Squashing content to reduce the page count may make the print cost cheaper but it may also put people off reading it! If they don’t read it, they can’t recommend it. Our design and typesetting service will select appropriate fonts and prepare a professional page layout for every page of your book.
Book format – hardback or paperback, large or small, colour or black and white. These decisions matter and affect sales. The format needs to be appropriate to the book, whether it is a coffee table book, a children’s picture book or a novel.
Every element requires careful consideration and professional input from someone who understands its importance. Don’t assume your content will do the work and sell itself. People do judge a book by its cover, and its title, and its blurb…
Top tip: add a call to action at the back of your book, with your website link, information about any follow up books/other titles, and an invitation to leave a review on Amazon.