9 Graphics You Need
I’m two weeks out from release - which means I’m scrambling for graphics like a Florida tourist looking for sunscreen. Strong graphics can be the difference between a blah release and a star-studded one - and there are a few key traits that will set your graphics apart from the pack.
Your teasers should feel like the cover. The cover should match the tone of the book. Every piece of your marketing package should fit into one color scheme, one font collection, one consistent theme.
Here are two examples from masters of branding - Jana Aston and Catherine Cowles. These books are both contemporary romance, but you can get a very clear feel for each book from its graphics. See what I mean?
There are all sorts of graphic design rules on fonts - which I’m looking forward to learning in the new photoshop class I’m taking. What I do know from a reader perspective - fonts can ruin a graphic. Nothing says ‘cheap homemade cover’ more than a generic font or clashing typography.
Remember - don’t try to use too many font styles in one graphic, and keep your font choices consistent among your coordinating graphics.
There’s no use in creating a teaser that no one can read. Or a book cover that someone has to struggle to figure out. Remember WHY you are creating a specific graphic, and make sure that that graphic fulfills that purpose - and is legible.
With each book, there are 9 key graphics you will need to create. In the past, I’ve shelled out $15 per graphic to have my cover designer create the package. Seven years into this industry, I’ve finally decided to stop paying for - and waiting for - graphic design, and are learning how to create graphics myself.
Whether you’re hiring a professional or creating them yourself - here is a quick list of 9 graphics your book promotion will need.
These teasers should have the same typography and feel that your future cover will have. If possible, use the title png that will be on the cover.
These teasers typically include the book cover on them, and help with reader recognition. Remember, readers often need to see a book 4 or 5 times before they make a purchase.
These are time-sensitive graphics that covey that this book is coming soon. They often include words like ‘preorder now’ and the release date. I always make a version of each teaser that is a ‘coming soon’ version, as well as having that same teaser in an ‘available now’ format.
These graphics urge the reader to start reading your book immediately! I use them during the first month of release promo.
You can decide how far out you want to start your countdown graphics, but I normally make about 10 graphics. Each of the graphics looks very similar, but has a different time stamp, for example: One month, One week, 3 Days, 24 hours, etc. These graphics are great to include in your blogger and reader promotional packets and encourages your promoter to post multiple times in the time period leading up to your release.
Facebook Ads only allow 20% of the image to include text. Bookbub ads are sized 300 pixels by 250 pixels. Each ad platform has different requirements, which causes the need for different graphics to be created. This was one of the reasons why I decided to learn to create my own graphics - it was taking more time to communicate my needs to my designer, rather than whip up my own item.
The easiest way to communicate a sale is a big shiny graphic with the sale price displayed in all of its glory. This is another instance where multiple graphics are typically needed, since your sale price could be anything from $2.99 down to free.
Whenever I run a giveaway, I notice a much higher interaction and participation rate if I have an accompanying graphic. Make sure your graphic clearly communicates the prize, but you can save the entry details to your post - unless it can be clearly stated in a half-dozen words.
I saved the most important for last. Your cover is the single more important piece of marketing collateral that exists for your book. It is the one thing that could make or break your book launch. I highly suggest hiring a professional for it - unless you have training in graphic design.
If you need help learning how to create professional-looking graphics - I highly suggest this course. I looked around for a long time to find something that would teach me the basics of Photoshop and would be geared specifically to authors and our unique needs. Click here if you’re interested in checking it out - but hurry! It is closing for new students in a day or two.