Write an Attention-Getting Book Title
By Joan Clout-Kruse
“How To Win Friends and Influence People”—Isn’t that a terrific attention-getting title? You would pick up the book and browse through it in the bookstore with a title like that. The author, Dale Carnegie, created this wonderful book more than 50 years ago and it still is in print today.
The content must hold the interest of the reader but it is the title first that perks the curiosity of the book browser. It is the banner for your book. You want your title to capture the attention of your potential reader. You want the title to subliminally say, “Grab me. Hold me. Take me.” When it does, you are on your way to persuading your reader-to-be to take your fantastic book home and apply your amazing ideas to his or her life.
Creating a title that will sell your book isn’t easy. It takes time and lots of working titles before you select the most irresistible title for your book. Here are some tips for generating awesome titles.
1. Identify a Problem. Teach a Skill.
Will your book solve a problem for your reader? This is a great how-to book. I own many how-to books on writing and personal success. I have a how-to book on 10 ways to keep your car in top condition. Most of us search for problem solving books. Wouldn’t you like to learn “how to win friends and influence people?” A how-to book with an attention-getting title will attract readers to your book. Another type of how-to book teaches your reader new skills. Make it clear on the book title what the reader will learn such as the “Dummies” or “Idiots” book are so good at describing in their titles.
2. Promise Something
Can you promise results? Can you make a difference in people’s lives? Does a title like, “Think and Grow Rich,” by Napoleon Hill promise something? Yes, it does. We want to open the book and find out more about getting rich. Will your book help improve your reader’s life? Begin making a list of promising titles for your book.
3. Bring Hope To Your Reader
“Hope is the mainspring of life,” I wrote years ago on a book about hope. We look for hope every day in our daily activities. Years ago I heard the story of the president of a company who sold cosmetics to women. He was asked, “What do you do?” He said, “I sell hope.” Are you selling hope to your readers? Again the book, “Grow Rich” is not only promising something but it is selling hope. What will your book promise? Begin making a list.
4. Create a Sub-Title
Hah! You thought you were finished. Don’t stop with a title. Now you have to create an awesome sub-title that will appeal to the reader. Did you know that Robert Kiyosaki’s book; “Rich Dad Poor Dad” has a sub-title? It is, “What The Rich Teach their Kids About Money—That the Poor And Middle Class Do Not!” A little long but it is right to the point and grabs attention. Your sub-title will tip the reader on the benefits or the unique approach or slant of your book. Begin writing sub-titles for your book.
5. Deciding on the Title for Your Book
After you’ve written dozens or more working titles and sub-titles take a break for a day or two. Let the titles jell in your mind. Keep your titles short and easy to remember. Make your sub-titles just long enough to let the reader know the key benefit or slant of your book. E-mail the title list to colleagues on your list who might be interested in your topic. Ask them which one grabs their attention. Get their feedback. Don’t tell them your favorite title as it might influence their decision. After a few days pick the best title for your book based on comments from your friends and your own feelings. Remember the title should describe the book’s theme and the subject matter must be evident in the title.
6. Visit the Bookstore
It’s time to go to your bookstore or online and view the titles of books. Make a list of the ones that capture your attention. Why do they grab you? It probably is for one or more of the reasons mentioned in #1-3 above. It identifies a problem that you want to solve, it teaches something, promises something, or will bring you hope. You want your book do one or more of these things for your readers.
After you have created a dozen or more titles and sub-titles, perused the bookstore, received your colleagues’ opinions, it is time for you to select your best title. You are now on your way to creating that bestseller!
Copyright 2007, Joan Clout-Kruse. All rights reserved.
About the Author
America's Book Coach, Joan Clout-Kruse, helps entrepreneurs and business professionals write a biz book that will get them recognized as an expert, attract more clients and boost their income. She helps them overcome their roadblocks, frustrations and excuses.
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Joan's book, “Top 10 Traits of Silicon Valley Dynamos” can be ordered at: http://www.rayveproductions.com/inc/pdetail?v=1&pid=506