Writing is fun. Putting together a children’s picture book and getting it published is always an exhilarating experience. However, that is the fun side of writing. The not so fun side is actually marketing your book and getting as many people to know about it and hopefully buy it. This is the part of writing or publishing a book that leaves most writers frustrated.
The reality is that just because a book is published does not mean it can never be revisited. I always read and re-read books I’ve written to see if there’s something I need to edit that can improve a reader’s experience as well as boost sales. With this in mind, one of my books has been given me cause for concern.
An author’s books are like his babies and he/she wants them all to do well. All my children’s books so far have been favorably received by the market and have all achieved best seller status in one or multiple categories in the Amazon store. However, What Do You Call a Baby Lion? hasn’t done so well. I’ve really been thinking of what I could do to make it more popular.
Over the weekend, I believe I discovered what has made this book not so popular. Two things actually and they are:
- The Title
- The cover
The Title – I believe (and please feel free to disagree) that the title doesn’t lend itself to a wide audience. Anyone who isn’t interested in lions will overlook this book. Also the title doesn’t fully represent what the book is really about – BABY ANIMALS. The concept behind this book was to introduce little children to the names of baby animals. The book starts with a little boy whose mom has just had a baby girl and he wonders what baby animals are called.
The Cover – You know the popular saying ‘Don’t judge a book by it’s cover’ Well, with regard to a human being, I totally agree. You might be making a big mistake judging as hopeless the scruffy, shy looking guy in front of you at the check out till who might actually be the CEO of a Fortune 500 company. However, when it comes to books, your cover is everything. Or at least is the first frontier upon which the battle is either won or lost.
Of all the books I have published, I never had that YES feeling (with What Do You Call a Baby Lion?) when I got it back from my book cover designer. Too much white space, I really wasn’t feeling the brown font, the square around the lion seemed forced etc.
So for the past month, it’s been rumbling in my mind what to do with ‘What Do You Call a Baby Lion?’ And over the weekend I came up with the solution.
The title of the book will be changed to ‘I Love Baby Animals’
Also, based upon the feedback I have received, the cutest animal in the book was the baby hedgehog. This will now be the main character on the book cover. There will be yellow text on a green background for the cover. This has worked really well on my other books and I’m hopeful it’ll be the same on this book.
My designer is currently working on the book cover and once that has been completed, I will relaunch the book and have a free download day.
If you’re an aspiring author and wondering why your book isn’t selling so well, there’s always something extra you can do. I’m hopeful the tweaks I have done will have a positive effect on the sales of this book. Will report back sometime next week to let you know how it went. Also watch out for the announcement on the free download day.
I would really love your comments with regard to this post.
Maurice – I would definitely agree about the book cover, it does nothing to entice me towards your book. I think any children’s book needs colour and changimg it to the baby hedgehog with some green around it sounds like a big improvement
thanks Janet. The cover should be ready in the next 24 hours…can’t wait!
Without being an expert on children’s book (although I love kids)I agree with the two major things you mention above. Title and Cover are the most important things to take note first. Title must not be too long and of course should be catchy, depending on the category you go for. “Baby Animals” or “I love Baby Animals” are more appropriate, I think.
Cover should stand out and attract the eye with colors (kids LOVE colors) since it is a children’s book.
I’m a new writer and haven’t experienced any low sales YET! but I do think that if the cover and title match together then a good content will boost the sales. A good promotion should always be there, since the competition is BIG and most of the times you need to run ahead the others, following the trend.
I wish you all the best!
Hi Mary! Thanks for stopping by. Totally agree with you. A good title and great book cover are usually great recipes for success.
“What do you call baby animals?” is a possible title. Colorful is good. I hope you will be happy with the new cover your designer is making. 🙂
Thanks Kathryn. Can’t wait to see the book cover. Thanks for getting a copy of this book and the review you left on the Amazon store. Your support is much appreciated.
You capture my feelings about book promotion. Who knew that once the book was up for sale the hard work begins? A great post!
Couldn’t agree more with you Cathleen.
I really believe this is one reason many new author’s books are not doing well. It’s not because they have crap content but simply because their book cover is not captivating and the title doesn’t stir any interest in a potential buyer.
Looking forward to seeing how this mini test turns out 🙂
Hi David I agree completely because I made the same mistake with my book “The Big Five” I didn’t realise that lots of people didn’t know what the big five was. I also made the cover too grown up for kids. I am also in the process of redesigning the cover and will also change the title to something like “Africa’s most dangerous Animals” I am still thinking about the title but will also be putting it back up again shortly. So easy to make this mistake.
Thanks for sharing your experience with us Dawn.
I really do hope the tweaks you make, have a significant difference.
All the best.
David, I agree, especially about the title. Another suggestion could be “10 Cutest Baby Animals” – sorry can’t remember how many there were.
Hope your book goes better after the changes.
Thanks Wendy! That is such an awesome title. 20 Cutest Baby Animals. Will have this title in mind for future books.
The new cover is ready and I’ll do a post after the free promo.
Great post, this is often a place where authors make mistakes. They have the talent to write but the book cover and the book title are for marketing reasons so often aren’t right. They get your book noticed or not.
I agree with the title change. Choosing the right title is extremely important and this is especially true of children’s books.
Thanks for your input Liam.
I think I got it real bad on the title with this one. Will be interesting to see how the market responds to the new title and cover.
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