Creating A Message to Entice Readers

I mentioned in my previous post that your message, what you say about your book online, is just as important as your book cover. With Twitter, you only have 140 characters- less if you’re also sharing a link or image. On Facebook, people are turned off by paragraph long posts. How do you condense your 100+ page story into one phrase or sentence?

This is similar to developing your elevator pitch. If you only had a minute to tell someone influential about your book, what would you say? However, this should be shorter than an elevator pitch. Think tagline for a movie.

Think of themes 
I struggled with this, probably because I’m too close to my book. I went back to my beta readers and asked them what were some of the important themes in my story.

Use Google Trends
Check out Google Trends and see it you can link any of the popular searches to themes in your book.

Twitter Trending Topics
Similarly, Twitter’s trending topics could help you form a message about your book. Remember Oreo’s Super Bowl tweet “You can still dunk in the dark“? Genius. Don’t force this. I’ve seen people try to sell produces using a trending hashtag and it was so obvious.

If you have reviews, look through them and see if there’s a common thing readers enjoyed about your book. Also, check out reviews of books similar to yours. See if there are any elements of those books that readers liked the most. If your book has those elements, use them to create your message.

Genre Research
Research your genre and see why people love those types of books. For instance, I write fantasy and horror, so I would look up why people are drawn to those genres.

This goes back to looking at reviews but, I wanted to make it a separate section because you don’t have to get this information from only reviews. Yasiv by Amazon is the more visual version of “Customers who bought this product also bought…” This could give you an idea of the popular books in your genre.

Know your target audience 
This is key. You can develop the best message, but if it doesn’t resonate with your audience, then all your work has been wasted.

Need more than one
Use one tagline often enough and it’ll stop working. That’s why you need a couple. For my book, the line “Darkness isn’t evil, just angry,”  used to attract attention. It doesn’t anymore, which is why I’m creating new taglines.

I recently learned from someone who works in publishing that people don’t click on ads that say pre-order. Something to keep in mind.

Why Your Book Pitch Matters (Even If You’re Self-Published)