Designing The Book Cover – How To Become A Bestselling Author

How To Become A Bestselling Author – Designing The Book Cover

In this blog post we’ll talk about designing the book cover as part of the process of creating a bestselling book and becoming a bestselling author in the field of entrepreneurship and success. Your main takeaway should be to create a cover that is compelling in design, composition, and content, selling the potential reader from the second they look at the cover and the secondly right when they read the title/subtitle combination.
But a designing the book cover can be harder than it appears. I’ve gone through numerous renditions, found some strong elements that I’ve fallen in love with, but I have to always separate my love for art and the reality of what sells and keep an open mind throughout the entire process.

Become A Bestselling Author – My Journey On How To Write A Book That Sells… Post #2 Designing The Cover

journey to become a bestselling author post 2 designing the book cover

Keeping Up Progress On Writing A Bestselling Book

A little over a week has passed and I’ve found myself making headway on my soon to be bestselling entrepreneurial and personal development book, “The Foundations Of Success.” I’m writing consistently, editing the chapters to have more heart, more story, more flow, and to evoke more emotion from my readers. And with this progress comes stage 2. I’m considering just what the book should look like and pondering designing the book cover.

“Artists have a tendency to get stuck in the creative and neglect the business. It’s easy to make good art… far harder to thrive from selling it.”
– Don’t Neglect The Overall Strategy!

Much like any artist gets tied down with his passions, focusing more and more on the creating and less and less on the business, I’ve got to keep myself aware of the productivity and progress traps that can happen on both sides of the equation. I love to design! I also love to write! And I Love to entrepreneur! (Is that even a verb?)
Young artists will get wrapped up in the creation of their art. When they finally pull themselves away from the creative process because they realize there is other work to do, they immediately go to the selling and promotion. They skip steps, the hard steps, and this gives rise to the cliche of the “Starving Artist.” Artists want to create and then make money. That’s it. They don’t want to have to worry about booking a gallery, dealing with negotiations, sell their work in person, find connections and network. They want to create brilliant pieces of art and then be recognized for their creative genius.
Oh, if only it were that easy. But it’s a fools errand to just create and hope.
Read 6 Reasons Why Artists Fail At Business…
The Difference Between An Artist And A Business Person…

“It’s a fool’s errand to just create and hope.”

The Young Entrepreneur must learn that while the passion and the fun is in the creating and the recognition, the growth and benefit is only found in the discipline of business. If you never pick your head up out of your work to observe the bigger picture, and plan each step for perfect execution, you’ll be left bitter, jaded, and broke. A genius artist with masterpieces never seen by the world.
Keep these 7 steps in mind to ensure your art goes somewhere…
How To Make Money As An Artist…

The danger for me is this:

  • I could easily spend all of my efforts writing an amazing book, and hope that it will sell simply on it’s own merits, but it won’t. It never does.
  • I could easily design a beautiful book cover, with minutia and brilliance put into every inch, every line, ever angle, every color perfectly thought out for marketing and pleasure of the eye. But if I launch the book and there is no-one to care, to spur on growth, to build momentum, the cover alone will never sell the book.
  • I could easily publish my book on amazon kindle, get a few reviews, work hard to share it and promote it, but never see its sales accelerate if the content is missing, or the cover isn’t perfect.
  • Therefore I must have amazing content that ads value through and through. I must have an incredible cover design, tested with my audience… not simply pleasing to my own desires, but proven in the marketplace to entice my demographic. And I must have each step of a carefully thought out Bestselling Marketing Plan implemented in order to ever see success in this journey to become a bestselling author.

In this process, everything matters. Success is found in the details as well as the big picture. It must all work together in perfect harmony for there to be any semblance of real success here. In my next post I will detail my carefully thought out Bestselling Marketing Plan and walk you through the big picture vision as well as the simple, small, yet oh so important steps I must execute spectacularly for me to become a best selling author.

So What’s My Point?

Yeah, we get it Machi, you’ve got to execute well on every level… So what’s my point in all of this?
My point is that while I’m fixing the content of my book, I’ve also got to concentrate on the other, equally important elements to becoming a bestselling author. At the end of this journey I fully expect to have an amazing and impactful entrepreneurship book on personal growth, personal development, and success. But do I also know that during that process I will need to have also been designing the book cover and building, implementing, and executing the perfect book publishing marketing plan?
So I’m splitting my time while still being effective in all areas. I’ve had to build habits that ensure I’ll write each day and hone my book’s content to perfection, while also designing the book cover and thinking about the next steps in marketing.

So I want to share with you my process for designing the book cover and creating a sellable cover that incorporates all that I’ve learned about marketing.
In this post I’ll walk you through the different variations of book covers that I’ve created so that you can see my design process, my driving thoughts and inspirations, and my conclusions.
I haven’t yet landed on a final design, that will come later in the process after designing and testing many different versions. But I want to walk you through my process so you can see the in’s and out’s of how I’m working my way towards having a bestselling personal development book on success.

In this post I’ll walk you through the different variations of book covers that I’ve created so that you can see my design process, my driving thoughts and inspirations, and my conclusions.

The Steps To Designing The Book Cover For A Bestseller!

Below you’ll see the variety of covers I’ve currently created and experimented with. But let me briefly lay out the steps required to designing the book cover for a bestseller.

  1. Determining The Content found on the Cover
    – Title
    – Keywords
    – Book Summary
    – Testimonials
  2. Creating 3 Book Cover Options
    – Multiple Options Will Be Split Tested Through Ad Spend
  3. Choosing A Final Book Cover Design
    – Final Cover Option Will Be Chosen From the Split Test Ad Winner

Designing the book cover starts with identifying exactly what “Good Book Cover Design” is. If Success truly does leave clues, then it makes sense that most other bestselling book covers will have commonalities that they share which make them strong choices.
Let’s look at some of the bestseller book cover pieces that I had as inspiration when designing the book cover for my book, “Foundations Of Success.”

Book Cover Designs That Inspired Me

personal development success book covers

success book cover designs

success books cover design

personal development success books cover design

success books cover designs

financial success wealth books cover design

You may notice some very stark similarities across all of these designs. Of course there are differences as well, there’s no 1 single way to design a bestselling book cover, but the impact should be relatively the same across the board. You’ll also notice that the title and subtitles, for the most part, all follow a similar structure. They communicate clearly what you’ll learn in the book, why you’d want to learn it, and who it’s for.
So utilizing this information, and being a Graphic Designer by trade, I set off to create my own book cover design for the “Foundations Of Success,” Bestselling Personal Development book.

My Initial Cover Designs:

These are my attempts at designing the book cover for a bestseller book. Now of course some of these are rough ideas, while others are more thoroughly worked out. Some are final drafts (more or less) while others are simply initial attempts.
But what I’m going for in these is to incorporate all that I know about marketing and what I see from other bestselling book cover designs. And furthermore, while I may be happy with the covers I create, it doesn’t mean that they’ll necessarily convert the way I want them too. I’m very open to the idea that while I’m a great Graphic Designer, I may be too close to the project and there may be someone else out there better suited to design the cover for “The Foundations Of Success.”
If I find this to be the case, I may host a design contest on 99 Designs to create a stunning book cover design and incorporate some of those designs in the split testing that I will do to choose the final book cover design.

The Foundations Of Success Book Cover Design

the foundations of success book cover design lifestyle billionaire limitless north
This was my initial book cover design. I used Alex Becker’s “Ten Pillars of Wealth” book cover design as inspiration for the layout.
I noticed that many books that I see on the bestseller lists are very clean, simple, and stark white, primarily designed with words. I made an attempt at that with this.

the foundations of success book cover design lifestyle billionaire limitless north
I created this design inspired by Robert Greene’s “Mastery,” Wealth Can’t Wait, and Dean Graziosi’s “Millionaire Success Habits” book.
Most great book covers are simple with 2-3 stark contrasting colors. I loved the triangles used by Robert Greene on his book series and attempted to utilize the same concept in my design.
From “Wealth Can’t Wait,” I really was impacted by the missing puzzle piece revealing a $100 bill underneath and wanted to play with that concept.
To fit the text on the cover, large enough to have an impact, I couldn’t have the triangle going all the way across the cover like on Robert Green’s books. Thus I ended up with a happy accident where I made a pyramid and had Benjamin Franklin from the $100 bill appearing inside.
His eye lands right where the “Eye of Providence” sits on the unfinished pyramid found on the $1 bill. Since this is such a controversial topic right now with the internet abuzz with talk of the Illuminati and their symbolism, this could serve me well.
Anytime you can use controversy and subjects that are currently captivating the public’s attention you are bound to get added exposure.

the foundations of success personal development bestselling book cover design
However, I don’t know that black, or a dark book cover is the wisest choice. While it looks great, rarely do I see bestselling book covers that are dark, and indeed, the opposite seems to be true. So I decided to make it white and see how I liked it.

the foundations of success personal development young entrepreneurship book cover
Here’s an entirely different cover design based more on “Wealth Can’t Wait.” I like the feel, but I’m not sold.

the foundations of success book cover design
Overall, it feels a bit overwhelming with the 2 different images of Benjamin Franklin. I’m not sold on this being the best option, but I do like the overall feel of it. I started playing around with some other variables just to see how it would develop.

foundations of success personal development book cover design
One more series of design variations.

Thoughts On Designing The Book Cover

So Far I’m happy with the designs I’ve been able to create. However, I know there are still many steps to go. I’ll be surprised if any of these cover designs end up being the final version for “The Foundations Of Success.” But it’s a start and there are some good elements involved across the board. The next steps for me are to finalize the title, subtitle, book summary, and any testimonials that will appear on the book cover. Then I will design both the front and the back of the book cover and begin looking at the overall project as a whole.
From there I will narrow down on 3 or so designs and begin running Facebook ads to them to test the response and reaction to each version. A final design will then be selected and I’ll feel confident moving ahead with further marketing steps.


When working on a future bestselling book, you’ve got to keep your eyes open on the entire project and process, and avoid getting caught in the productivity traps of focusing on a single element, hoping to succeed on quality or design alone.
Artists rarely understand business, and thus focus entirely on creating great art. But this leads to the cliche of the starving artist.
For us young entrepreneurs, we want to diligently tackle every part of the process, from writing, to cover design, to marketing and promotion. Sometimes this will require singular focus on one element at a time, and at other times it will require tackling multiple pieces of the process at once.

Now that the book is entirely written and I am simply going back into to perfect it, I’ve got to keep the process moving forward by designing the perfect book cover for a bestseller in the Personal Development/Success category. This part of the process, in-turn, needs to lead me into the marketing steps that will ensure I have an audience to launch my book too.

So for now, I’m diving deep into cover design, while consistently editing and adding depth to each chapter of the book.
For the cover design steps, I’ll explore initial points of inspiration and creativity while working to create a strong composition and overall idea.
Eventually I will narrow down my book cover designs to 3 options that I’m pleased with and I will then test each option via running Facebook ads to gauge preference and response.
Furthermore, I’m consistently building my Foundations Of Success mailing list and will be mailing each of these blog posts out to them to build an engaged and eager audience for my book launch. My audience here will also play a vital role in helping me select the best book cover design to move forward with.
Designing the book cover involves selecting the strongest title/subtitle combination that explains the content in the book, who the audience is, and what they will learn in reading the book. Once this is figured out, the fine-tuning process will begin and a fully finished book cover will begin to emerge.
Meanwhile, overall branding is important. Color selection, testimonials, book reviews, etc… will all need to be figured out and made consistent across all marketing material. Slowly but surely a bestselling book marketing plan will come to life as each step gets taken care of.

Stay tuned for the next step in my journey to become a bestselling author.

I’m bringing you along on this journey so that you can learn from me as I work to become a bestselling author.

Go To Next Post on the Journey To Become A Bestselling Author –> Post #3 Re-writing The Book With Relevance

Wealth and Success Books – Bestsellers:

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wealth can't wait book cover design

start with why simon sinek book cover design

awaken the giant within tony robbins book cover

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the intelligent investor benjamin graham book cover

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subtle art of not giving a f*ck book cover design

pre-suasion robert caialdini book cover design

eat that frog book cover brian tracy

the art of lying down bernd brunner

30 challenges 30 days zero excuses book cover

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the 10 x rule grant cordone book cover

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millionaire success habits book cover design

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best new poets book cover

creative graphic design

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