The book group I belong to recently decided that the next book we would read and discuss would be It’s Good to Be Queen by Liz Curtis Higgs. So, I needed to purchase the book.
I called my local Christian book store to see if they had the book in stock. Sadly, I got handed around to three different sales staff before getting an answer. Obviously, this store needs to work on their customer service—something I think is important since many Christian book stores are struggling. Fortunately, they did have the book in stock, so I stopped in to pick it up.
Pulling the book out of the bag when I got home, I notice something new on the cover. Being in the book business, I tend to notice new trends and ideas that are useful marketing gimmicks to pass along to you, my readers. So, I am bringing the “new” thing on the cover of this book to your attention.
The front cover of this book totes a little icon of an open book and reads “Study Guide Inside”. Now, it has been a trend for quite a few years to include either a discussion guide or a study guide in the back of both fiction and nonfiction books. These discussion guides are meant to make the book practical for reading groups or study groups to use.
Including discussion or study questions in the back of your book provides an additional selling point for your book. You can market your book as great for individual reading or a group study. I believe that it is best to put the discussion questions right in the book. Some authors choose to include a link to the study or discussion questions, but putting the questions or guide right in the book makes it convenient for the consumer—increasing the chances they will act on the information.
The publisher of It’s Good to Be Queen has run with the idea that having a guide in the book increases the book’s potential for sales. They have taken the concept one step further by adding a little icon to the book’s cover to immediately draw people’s attention to the fact that the book contains a study guide. This increases the likelihood that readers will consider using the book for a group study.
The Study Guide Inside icon is a great little marketing strategy that costs nothing. By simply adding a small icon to the front cover of the book, this publisher has raised the awareness of the book’s usefulness for another purpose besides just reading it.
The idea of adding this type of icon to a book’s cover is a solid marketing idea. If you produce a book that has a study or discussion guide, you, too, can add an icon to your book’s cover to alert readers to this additional resource you are providing with your book.
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