Authors

Authors improve their book marketing efforts by using PickFu to test book titles and covers with potential readers targeted by literary preferencenumber of books read per month, and more.


Which One Won? Connecting Your Book Cover With Emotions

When designing a book cover, it’s important to consider the emotions that you want your audience to feel. This often determines whether the person buys the book.

In other words, people buy with their emotions.

We saw this connection between emotion and book design in a recent PickFu poll.

Two authors recently tested two different covers for a book targeted at cancer patients. The authors targeted a female audience and asked which cover they preferred. … Continue reading

Which One Won? Photo Editing and Book Covers

Even the smallest tweaks on the design of a book cover can have a positive impact on book sales. One recent PickFu poll demonstrates how photo editing and object placement can significantly alter the reactions of readers.

Author Amber Zygutis asked the test panel participants which cover they preferred for her novel The Siren’s Violin. Option A presents a dark red-haired woman staring at readers with alarming, orange-colored eyes. Option B features an underwater shot of a red-haired woman with eyes closed and her head turned to the side. Can you guess which one won?

… Continue reading

3 Data Insights for Authors

Editor’s Note: Thanks to Caleb Kaiser at Reedsy.com for contributing the following guest post.

The publishing world earned its reputation for being opaque. If you want even basic data points, like book sales for a given title, you’re forced to cobble together numbers from a variety of sources — Nielsen BookScan, Amazon rankings, etc — just to get a vague estimate.

This dearth of data is part of what makes PickFu valuable to authors. PickFu gives you a quantifiable way to approach decisions like picking a cover image, writing a book description, or settling on a title based on data.

If you’re an author interested in taking a more analytical approach to your writing and/or publishing, you should know a handful of insights. We’ve listed our top three below, starting with… … Continue reading

Which One Won? Guns and Double-Barreled Questions

A crime novelist used PickFu to test two cover designs for his book Whiskey Devils. The respondent pool consisted of 50 people drawn from the general population. Option A featured an orange backdrop with bullet holes and gunsmoke and an evocative illustration of a hand transforming into a gun. Option B featured a subdued and elegant photograph of two shot glasses filled with whiskey on a dimly lit bar top. The publisher asked two questions of respondents: “Which cover is more enticing and eye-catching for a crime novel? Which makes you want to read further?”

Which book cover do you think our general population audience selected? Give it your best guess, then read the poll results here.

… Continue reading

Which One Won? What Book Covers Communicate to Readers

The design of a book cover has a huge influence on whether a reader chooses to purchase that book. Therefore, it’s important for authors and publishers to be conscious of a reader’s perception of your cover design.

Take, for example, this PickFu poll of two different book cover designs.

Option A features one person dragging a body through a grove of palm trees, silhouetted against a blue, twilight sky. Option B features a simple silhouette of a cat against a red background. Can you guess which one won?

… Continue reading

A Software Consultant Gets Her Own Lesson in Useful Software

K.N. (Kay) Kukoyi leads Purposeful Products, a London-based consultancy to help small business entrepreneurs translate their ideas into commercial web and mobile products.

Recently, Kay interviewed PickFu’s co-founder Justin Chen to get his advice for fellow entrepreneurs. She and Justin discussed how PickFu emerged from a personal need for unbiased feedback, how the business grew, and how it continues to change. … Continue reading

How PickFu Helped Win Battlefield Earth

A few months ago, Dave Chesson, creator of Kindlepreneur.com, received an email from Galaxy Press. Galaxy Press is the publishing company of famed sci-fi author L. Ron Hubbard, and the email asked for Dave’s help in writing a new book description for one of Hubbard’s most famous books, Battlefield Earth.

A step-by-step approach to writing a strong book description

Feeling honored, Dave approached the task methodically. First, he returned to basics and reviewed some trusted books and articles about what makes a good book description. Next, he scoured the web for book reviews, including professional blogs, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and iTunes. “The best strategy for writing a description that makes people buy is not only knowing the book, but also finding out what people say was their favorite part of the book, and expanding on that,” he writes. … Continue reading

6 Tips for Getting More from Your Amazon Author Central Page

Amazon is the world’s largest bookstore, and if you’re an author, you need to make the most of your presence there. I spoke with several indie authors to get their advice on how to maximize your Amazon Author Central page.

Personalize your Amazon Author Central URL

Amazon Author Central gives you the option to customize your URL. Author Karen Dimmick calls this a “pretty link” which she uses to “easily send people directly to it.” Her personalized link https://amazon.com/author/karendimmick looks nicer than the auto-assigned https://www.amazon.com/Karen-Dimmick/e/B01E0BXITY (though both land you in the same place). Include your Amazon Author Central link in your email signature or on your business cards. Author Amber Fallon adds, “The best way to put your Amazon Author Central page to work for you is to make sure people know about it. Tweet it once in a while. Be sure to include [the link] on your website and your social media profiles.” Tyrone Givens notes that the “author dashboard has a very convenient button for sharing the link to the page.” … Continue reading