First Impressions Matter: Why your book cover is everything

First Impressions Matter: Why your book cover is everything

The book cover is 90% of a book sale.


If you lose someone at the visual aspect of your book they won’t buy it. The cover has to be spot on. It has to be simple, effective, and engaging.


What does your book cover say about you?


More importantly, what does your book cover say about how you can help someone with their life or business?


Mistake #1

Authors mistakenly believe that it is a graphic designer who should create a book cover but it’s actually an expert advertising, marketing and public relations professional. This is what we do best but unfortunately most people try to go it alone.


Or, even worse, they “focus group” it on Facebook.


The problem with asking everyone is that if everyone could create a bestseller or knew what it took to – it wouldn’t be unique. But it is. Hardly anyone does it, so certainly “everyone” cannot help you. Don’t ask everyone. Ask the experts.


It’s a 1% er who creates bestsellers.

In life I’m always open to life long learning from my life team. It can be difficult to trust an expert. But the book cover is one of those times you need to.


I’ve seen publishers and even graphic designers fail at book cover creation. I cringed when I saw a publisher destroy a clients short, sexy book title – in favor of a very long archaic title and cover.


It’s such a specific yet magical gift to create a cover and title that engages the heart.


Purple is a color publishers don’t like because it represents “new age” whereas dark blue is often used because executives and especially men relate to it.


If you were planning to convince a book store or publisher to buy your book – wouldn’t that be important information to know?


A book cover is like a calling card. Will it communicate your business vision?


Don’t go to market without consulting an expert. Invest in yourself by contacting our team at OnFire Books today.




Tammy Kling is a best-selling author, TEDx Speaker, CEO of OnFire Books, and Ghostwriter of 251 books and counting, including: The Compass, Freedom, and There’s More to Life than the Corner Office. Tammy’s latest book, WORDS is being used by the Ritz Carlton in their leadership training. 


Watch Tammy’s TEDx Talk on the Power of Words here: To book Tammy as a Speaker, please visit and follow her on Twitter (@tammyklingfor the latest. 



Your Book Introduction: The single 2 most important pages in your book (yes, only 2) and why it’s the difference maker!

Your Book Introduction: The single 2 most important pages in your book (yes, only 2) and why it’s the difference maker!

The executive bolted through the airport and arrived at his gate, out of breath. Two minutes until the boarding process began. He looked around. There was an airport magazine store, and he stepped in to grab a quick bottle of water for the flight. As he waited in line behind four other passengers, he checked his watch again, pulled out his boarding pass, and glanced at the tall display of books by the register.


His mind was triggered. What would he read on the plane?

He scanned the options and picked one with a clean white cover. There were several others, but many of them were busy, and confusing.


This book was white with a dark blue title. It was also a different size than the rest, so it stood out. One minute passed, and the line inched forward. The executive held the water bottle in one hand, with his briefcase, and flipped the book open with the other.


He read the first paragraph of the introduction.


The page began with a poignant question – one he had never considered:


What’s your five-year plan?


The person in line in front of him was now at the register. The executive looked up at cashier, and the question stirred in his heart. What’s my five-year plan?


He thought of his demanding job, the client meeting in New York, his wife back at home, and the costs of college looking in the distance.


What’s my five-year plan?


His heart raced.  It was a question he needed to consider. A question worth thinking about. A question that would mean the difference between success and failure.


He read the next paragraph. And it was this one that gave him hope.


“The good news is, it’s never too late to start. Your five-year plan can be developed starting today. You don’t have to worry, you don’t have to stress, and you don’t have to consider all the things you haven’t yet done. You can start creating your future today.”


He placed the book on the counter, swiped his credit card, and took a deep breath. Somehow, the paragraph gave him hope that he could tackle his biggest fears. He did not yet know who the author was or even what the book was entirely about but the paragraph in the introduction was enough to ignite him to buy. This is a book I need, he thought.


This is a scene that plays out all across the world in airports, stores, and even online.


Interesting Image

People are busy. But when you can speak to their biggest fears, and appeal to their hopes and dreams, even the ones that are hidden and unspoken, you can change lives.


The best books, ad copy, websites, speeches and introductions are the ones that instantly engage.


Most of the time you only have minutes to do it.


The best introduction gives us hope that the words within the book will solve a problem.


Maybe it’s a problem the reader has been pondering at 3 AM, like money, or future planning. Maybe it’s a problem they’ve been pondering for a decade.


If you can deliver hope, you can deliver the future. Hope sells. Your book is a product that will help market and sell your business, and create a parallel revenue stream.


It’s for this reason specifically that our very first coaching call focuses on the book introduction.


During our first book Forensic call we kick off the book process with an author and their team. It is not uncommon to have a CEO, and several of his team members on the call including his chief marketing officer.


Or on other occasions we may have a big speaker, or a best-selling author who wants to transition his brand in a different direction.


Often times we will look at his or her previous line of books and see that the introductions were missing the mark. Why is this so critically important?


Because the introduction sells books.


Just like the first two minutes of a TED talk or speech, the book introduction instantly engages the heart. If it does not, you risk losing a buyer.


Here’s to your next great book!

From the book, Bestseller: How to Write Your Book and Create a Bestseller in 90 Days by Tammy Kling, CEO OnFire Books

Your Words Matter

If your life and business expertise and intellectual property isn’t worth saving, and passing on, what is?

Timeless authors like Napoleon Hill and CS Lewis are still changing lives today. We can save dollars in the bank but your legacy isn’t that. Your legacy isn’t your achievements either. When I coach successful CEOs and leaders I say – you are not what you do. 

You are who you are. And that’s your legacy. 

Right now we are creating books for a lot of different celebrities including Chi Chi Rodriguez and Darryl Strawberry, but not because they’re celebrities.

I’m fixated on the inner workings of their soul, the stories they tell when they cry, remembering failures or weaknesses, and share their story in order to hopefully change the life of someone else. Whether it’s a homeless man, a stay at home mom, or a former alcoholic who overcame that struggle – I am passionate about finding the best story. 

And the best is the one that changes lives. 

You only got one life, so live it. Create a legacy worth writing about and then do what less than 3% of the population can do. Write a book about it, to pass it on to your clients, children, or humanity for thousands of generations. 

Not sure where to start?

That’s OK. Join us for The Conversation. Click the Image for a video to see what the buzz is all about.



New York Times Best Selling Author

Let Me Help You Tell Your Story

Let Me Help You Tell You Your Story