They tell us never to judge a book by its cover, that we should look past the artwork and carefully crafted design to better see what the content of the product is, however, this is easier said than done. We are (whether we like it or not) easily persuaded by advertising in all of its forms, this is why companies spend billions every year on selling us their goods online, in print and upon the screen.
Book cover design is no different, when placed upon a shelf or on the screen of your favorite eBook store your book is just one title in amongst millions of other books, all of which are trying to catch the eye of the buyer and convince them to stop and take a closer look
And this is the deal with choice, when you have so many options to choose from (and keep in mind that there are over 2,700 new indie titles published on average daily) your reader has a lot of book titles to look at before they decide upon their next read, so they become quicker in accepting or dismissing what’s in front of them. So, if your book cover design doesn’t grab their attention, forget it
Choice is of course a great thing, but because there are so many books to consider, you naturally scan the shelves quicker than if you only had ten books to choose from
When you look at the major publishing houses and their approach to book cover design and advertising, you can see that they clearly take this very seriously. First of all, they have a great deal of money tied up in each book that they publish, so ensuring that the publication is a success is paramount. They also understand that advertising works, your initial perception of the book will either cause you to want to find out more or move on to the next.
The big publishing houses also have a large budget and normally a team of designers at their disposal, they plan professional campaigns and great looking materials to support each book. The challenge for indie authors is that these books are your competition, so if you publish with a cheap looking cover your work will stand out in an unfavorable way against them.
You will need a book cover design that looks professional if you want your work to be considered in the same light, you don’t have to spend thousands of dollars, but keep in mind that an unprofessional book cover will make the buyer assume that the contents of the book are just as unprofessional.
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