Why you should care about book cover design.

Designing book covers is a brilliant way to make a living. It’s creative and challenging, and it’s always a thrill when I see a title I worked on in a bookshop…

But covers need to do more than just look nice. I’ve spent 17+ years of my working life talking to anyone who’ll listen about how book covers are branding – and why they aren’t just the last bit of the publishing process to quickly throw together. Get your cover right and it will work hard for you. Here’s how:

  • Tell people you care about your content.

A well-designed cover signals that you care about your content and how it’s perceived. It reflects your commitment to delivering a high-quality reading experience and the effort that’s gone into the writing and publishing process. 

  • Reinforce brand reputation.

Book covers are an opportunity for publishers to showcase their style, values, and ethos. By maintaining a cohesive design language across book covers, publishers reinforce author and reader recognition and reputation – supporting submissions and sales.

  • Stand out from the competition.

Fiction, non-fiction, academic monographs, picture books, textbooks… All have competitors, and so your cover needs to work hard to make sure yours is the most appealing.

  • Find your audience.

If you get the cover right, you can signal a message to exactly the audience you want for the book. Thoughtful design can make sure that your book reaches the right people, and help readers to find your content easily. Happy publisher, happy reader.

It’s always a delicate balance between telling the brand’s story and serving the content of the book, but good design can find that balance and serve all these goals. Designers can find visual cues that resonate with readers, making it easier to communicate the book’s themes while maintaining the integrity of the overall brand.

I really love book cover design, and I care about creating covers that work hard and serve the publisher, author and content. If you are looking for a cover designer, please get in touch.