This post was written for the Insecure Writer’s Support Group where we share our encouragement or insecurities on the first Wednesday of the month, to join the group or find out more click here.
OPTIONAL IWSG DAY QUESTION:
If you are an Indie author, do you make your own covers or purchase them? If you’ve been traditionally published, how much input did you have on the cover art?
Fishing for Readers (aka marketing)
A good cover has only one job. It hooks the eye. I know—ouch. But that’s its job. As your possible reader peruses the thousands of book covers available, what makes them stop and take a harder look at yours?
Cover art has marketing elements designed to invite your reader to click the thumbnail or pick it up and read the back. Book blurbs sink the hook and get the reader to read the first line. Which leads to the first paragraph. To the first page.
And the hooks just keep on hooking.
What I’ve done
I also tried my hand at cover art, but that’s later in the post.
What I learned
The cover can be more than a book cover. Once designed and before the book release, it can build anticipation. Some authors and their marketers throw a Cover Reveal Blog Hop. Here the readers can win swag and possibly an ARC—Advanced Reader Copy.
This can rally early reviews which always help. The more reviews the more success in sales.
Once out, the author can use the image for social media headers, banners, and avatars.
Beautiful as they are, Book Covers and Cover Art are Marketing Tools. Nothing More.
Merging the Elements
I created the covers for Witchery, Mexmur: the huntress, Dragon Eye, and Minor Error. Here I invested nothing but time and a few dollars in simple images. Although I think the covers look pretty good, I’m not a master.
When doing this for an actual book, do a mockup and get feedback. Polish it. Just as you would in your written work.
Or better yet…
Many successful self-published works are professionally edited, within the cover and without. Typesetting to book blurbs. And the professional cover design is just one of many elements the marketing plan includes.
Because the publisher understands, we get one chance with a new reader.
Paying someone who actually knows how to put the marketing elements together seems the wise choice to me. Publishers—indie or self—must meet the high quality their readers expect if they want set the hook.
Make the sale and return on their investment.
NOW, A QUESTION FOR YOU
What do you look for when searching for your next read?