"Business Monday books columnist Richard Pachter offers his highly subjective list of favorites"
From Susan Kendrick
The end of the year is a great time to look back and see what books stand out as having the most impact in their markets. I ran across this best-of list by Richard Pachter this morning on the Miami Herald website. I'm passing along his picks because they offer insight into what makes good book covers for business books.
In other words, while Pachter focuses on the content and usefulness of these books, my interest (and my reason for passing them along to you) is in their packaging.
I started looking for these covers on Amazon, eager to see what they looked like. I got excited when I saw that these book covers do the three things every good cover should do. They each incorporate the following:
While it may seem easy enough to come up with such simple concepts, it isn't. There are far too many business books still coming out that are cluttered and dated looking--these are the "teal green carpet" of the book cover world. in fact, I ran across an interesting article on this phenomenon called Why Are Business Book Covers so Ugly? This article is worth reading for a look at the book covers and for the comments from readers that offer some interesting input as to why.
The rest of the graphics on these books are relatively simple. No cliche landscapes, horizons, mazes, soaring eagles, or any combination of these (yes, this still happens). Any graphics take a single-shot approach--there is a singular visual message that directly supports the title and the concept of the book.
Of course, this doesn't mean that all business books should be white or predominately text-driven. The particular book title and book cover design for every book should be carefully determined based on a number of factors, including: the target market for the book, what appeals to that audience, if the book needs to stand out in a crowded market or create and dominate a new niche right from the start, how well the brand (if any) is already known, how and where the book will be marketed, etc.
Even while there is no "right" answer for what kind of book cover works best, one look at these covers reveals some definite trends, and from major publishing houses like Wiley and Random House.
Each of these books also demonstrates that the best book covers have billboard appeal. They are bold, professional, and they make a strong, singular statement--in both book cover writing and design. They are good examples for any author of how great business book brands are born.
Susan Kendrick, Write To Your Market, Inc. All Rights Reserved. 1-888-634-4120.