As with every new product that’s about to hit the market, a sneak preview is always an excellent way to stir some excitement and start some discussions around your book. A dramatic cover reveal is a fantastic marketing strategy -it’s cost-effective, it’s intimate and it makes those who see your book cover feel special, as they are among the “selected few” that have had the privilege to see your upcoming book. Book cover reveals can work for both fiction and non-fiction books. Your book does not have to be part of a series either, a book cover reveal is an effective, yet usually neglected part of a successful marketing strategy.
When is the right time for a cover reveal?
Not too early is the key here. If you make the cover available too early and you manage to stir some expectations around it, keep in mind that in this marketing age that we live in, interests are short-lived. People generally have a short memory span. You have to give them a sneak preview, then before they get distracted by other things (and especially by other books), you will have to present them the real deal. The best potential customer for you is someone who has just finished a book and is looking for a new one to read. This is the delicate moment when the reader is actively hunting for new material. It usually lasts a short time and you have to be able to reach them at this instance. So reveal your cover, and in a matter of days, present your book to your audience.
Be that as it may, the sooner you start planning your cover reveal, the better. Once your book cover design is ready, you can start working on the marketing strategy right away. Using part of your brain to create a marketing strategy while writing your book will motivate you to finish your book faster, write better and it will make you ask questions about your manuscript that you had neglected until then. Once you’re getting close to wrapping things up, you can immediately upload your book cover to most online bookshops with a release date. These are excellent places to showcase your cover together with a blurb. But for people to get to these pages, you have to use other materials.
What are the platforms that can be used to reveal a book cover?
That goes without saying; every social media platform you can reach out to. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn are all excellent choices. Find book clubs, even better find genre-specific book clubs where you can post about your book. Make the best use of Goodreads and upload a short chapter of your book to Wattpad. Create banners that you can use on these sites, and together with the banner add a link to your product page on Amazon. Be proactive and personal, respond to readers who comment about your book. Show them that you appreciate their excitement. Even if you get heartbreaking comments (social media messages can be ruthless), maintain the positive vibe. Or if you can, just erase those messages. This is your time!
Create an event
To create even more excitement and enthusiasm (and remember, these things are contagious!) consider coordinating the timing of your reveal with an event: a live author chat, or a gathering with a large circle of people, (remember to announce where and when the reveal will take place and add some surprise elements in your invitation). At the reveal, hand out bookmarks (contact us if you should need them). In the meantime, you can also create a small web page for your book and start posting about your book in your blog. The more news you create for your book, the higher are the chances that someone will stumble upon them.
Find the most influential people around you and let them know that something is about to change the literary landscape. Find short and impactful extracts from your book and send them together with the cover to these people. You can also opt to release a few chapters together with the cover reveal. While this might interest people who are already waiting for your next book, it might be too much to swallow for someone who has never heard of you before. But everything counts. The more time you put into this, words will travel around.
Remember, the back is also part of the cover
Meaning the blurb can also be used at the cover reveal. You might do last minutes changes to the back cover, but that’s perfectly OK. A catchy blurb can be as effective as the cover itself. Never hesitate to be bold when writing the blurb. This isn’t the time for modesty. If you trust your book enough to publish it, and expect people to read it, you will have to convince them that it’s worth their time. And no better place to give this message than in the blurb! Blurbs can be released even before the cover reveal. But you can just as well bring these two to light together.
Remember, cover reveals are where the wheels start spinning for the first time for your book. Your book is finally seeing the light of day, even though it’s just the cover for the time being. Now, things are getting real. You will start getting feedback, something that was just an idea, is now getting its shape.
In the end, it comes down to perception. If you feel your book is important, others will feel the same. Once you have your cover, let your ego run free, and don’t feel ashamed about being passionate about your book.