Tips for visual book marketing
You might need to spend some money.
Promoting your book online has never been easier. There are so many helpful tools to help you make great graphics. I will tell you what I use and show you how to make easy graphics and how to take good photos of your book. You might need to spend some money on upgrading to pro accounts on the websites I use instead of their free services but it’s money well spent that you will make back if the graphics help your book sell.
I will be working with Rae Knowles's book, The Stradivarius coming May 2023 from Brigid’s Gate Press.
Here is the cover she sent me:
It’s gorgeous and evocative, but I do think the title is dark and can get lost in graphics so any marketing should make the title and author name big & loud. Here are a few sample graphics I made:
This one is tea-stained sheet music from Shutterstock via PicMonkey which is what I use to make all my graphics. I’ve had a pro account with them for over 10 years. I recommend Canva as well. With PicMonkey, you have access to thousands of copyright-free images, fonts, graphics, and tools. It’s important to know you can’t just lift “tea-stained background” off Google search images and know for sure it’s copyright-free. Make sure all the text is big and legible. I use a drop shadow on most fonts so that it will pop off the background. To make those 3D book graphics, I use BookBrush. I have a pro account there too because I turn a lot of covers into 3D graphics.
On PicMonkey, you can re-size any graphic to fit all social media platform dimensions and this is so IMPORTANT! You don’t want funky-sized graphics that cut off important information or are formatted incorrectly. After I made the Instagram-sized graphic I re-sized it for Twitter:
When Rae posts these, she will add important pre-ordering links, blurbs, etc. I have such a pet peeve with blurb graphics. 99.9% of the time the font is too small and unreadable. So I made a graphic and then a blurb graphic to go with it:
This is another Shutterstock, free graphic for the background. I searched “Violin” and chose this one with dark elements like the lighting and the skull.
Rae can post two graphics side by side on Twitter, that way the blurb is easy to read. On Instagram, she can do a carousel swipe and put one graphic first to swipe to the blurb. These get more engagement and boost your post. Note: this is not really a blurb but a description of the book with eye-catching buzzwords to captivate readers.
If you want to do a cover reveal on social media, Book Brush has templates to tease the cover in a 3D graphic. Never just post a book cover on Instagram, it will get formatted to cut off the title or the author name, you simply make a 3D book graphic or make sure to use a properly formatted background and then just place the cover on it like this:
I added drop shadows to the cover and the publisher font. For photographs, use natural light and minimal props like this:
I don’t have Rae’s physical book but I do have Briana Morgan’s so I used that
You can pop a book off the background by placing a small bowl or object underneath it
On my phone’s camera settings, I select “square” so that it is already perfectly formatted for an Instagram post. I move objects around as I look through the lens to make sure I’m not cutting off the title or author’s name. Lastly, I have a BookShop account and I highly recommend using it for links if your book is available here
I found MOUTH FULL OF ASHES!