Self-Publishing 101: Part 2 - Cover Design
In Part 1 of our “Self-Publishing 101” series, I convinced you to hire several editors (best-selling author Bella Andre actually has 5 line editors…). So what’s next? Cover design.
Unfortunately for me, I can’t use Bella Andre as an example here, since she creates her own cover designs. But as Hugh Howey (another best-selling self-published author) likes to say, “Unless you are Bella, hire someone to do your cover.” And I don’t believe you are Bella (if you are, please join Reedsy ☺).
If your cover stands out from the crowd in a super-saturated marketplace like Amazon, the chance of your book actually being read increases exponentially. So how do you do that? What do your readers want to see?
Well, that largely depends on who they are.
And to find out the answer to that, we have to consider…
Sadly, there’s no big marketing secret that all successful authors know and have vowed to keep from the rest of us. There’s simply a million little things you can/should do to improve your book’s discoverability.
As with any product, marketing your book revolves around the question: who are your customers and what do they crave?
You can find the answer to this all-important question on Google, Amazon or Goodreads; just have a look at the best-listed eBooks in your category. Read the blurb copy or sample pages available to the public, and be sure to look at things like page layout and of course, cover design.
Yep! We’re back to covers. Say what you will about old adages—people are judging your book by its cover. But now that you know what your target audience likes, you are primed and ready to give it to them. Judge away, reading masses—we know what you’re looking for.
Remember, authors: start marketing before it’s time to release your book. Ensure your product and its packaging beckon to your target audience, and get a head start on marketing like the pros.
Reedsy: Find your cover designer
Here’s the truth: there are good and bad cover designers. Reedsy has done some of the work for you by vetting the designers we allow in the marketplace, but even among a pool of good designers, you still have to find the one that’s right for you.
First and foremost, choose wisely. You’ll want to find someone you can work with long-term, since you’re trying to create a brand around your writing and brands require consistency.
The process of finding a long-term design partner will go much faster and smoother if you can be extremely specific about what you’re looking for. If you have a vision, let potential designers know. Need inspiration or feel unsure? That’s okay, too. Reedsy allows you to generate a brief that details information about your book; potential designers understand all the essentials (genre, subgenre, synopsis, title, covers on the market you admire, etc.) so you can both focus on creativity.
Finally, Reedsy keeps all your workflow on one platform. That means messages, file sharing, payment, and anything else you or your cover designer might need. Everything stays private until your book gets the cover it deserves.
Part 3 of our Self-Publishing series is out: read it here!
You can find Part 1 of our Self-Publishing series here!
Post edited by our lovely content editor Rebecca Faith