Book jacket marketing

Is it better off being red? I say that because of something a friend said once. He was working in a technical book shop at the time. He claimed their marketing boffins had worked out that they sold 8% more copies of any text book with a red jacket. I’ve been wondering if that might translate to advice for designing fiction and nonfiction book jackets as well.

When I look at fantasy covers, most of them are playing with the idea of ‘hot’ by portraying semi-naked men or women (or both) on the covers. In addition, there’s often flames, or warm tones to contrast against a dark and shadowy background. Not red exactly, but heading in that direction.

Jackets for non-fiction grab your attention with neon colors, often orange and yellow or red, though there’s a good splash of acid green or neon green vying for eyeballs. The nonfiction works boast geometric shapes, diamonds and hard edges, plus more text than anyone other than an SEO guru would want to share. Don’t get me wrong … those key words help in the search algorithms on Amazon … the words work, but they sure are ugly.

It’s a balancing act. You want just enough information to satisfy the rules for sub-titles, which include a requirement to have all those words on the cover before putting them in the form on amazon. But maybe the color also makes an impact. It’s worth a bit of research. I think I’ll count the covers with red on them in the top amazon categories I’m interested in and see if that might be worth considering as a strategy. Sharing with you here to see what you think about the idea.

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