In my Publish Your Book download, I’m now moving on to the second part, which is Creation. This is where you complete your first draft of your book including the title, text and cover. Today we are looking at getting a book title.
Get a Working Book Title
It is a good idea to have a title before you start writing your book, or compiling information you have already written. Knowing the title of your book will help you hone the contents and target the book successfully. I first learned to do this through brainstorming, but as you can see from this blog post it is really only the place to start. What you really need is to use the ideas you come up with as the beginning of keyword research. The place I go to do keyword research is the Google Adwords Keyword Tool. You don’t have to have an Adwords account to use it, and you certainly don’t want to start paying for advertising – we’re doing things on a shoestring here – but it can give you a great place to start. Type some keywords and phrases from your brainstorming into the box at the top, prove you’re not a robot and hit the search button.
What you are looking for is a keyword or phrase that will hit the emotions of your potential readers – this will show up because there will be a high number of monthly searches. I concentrate on the local searches column because I want a key phrase which makes sense to people in the UK where I live. Ideally you also want a phrase where there is either Medium or Low competition as well, as there you are more likely to stand out from the crowd. The key phrase you choose does not have to be the whole of your title, but it could be if it makes sense that way. Don’t stop with the keyword tool, go and do a search on the phrases that catch your eye. If another book with that phrase in the title comes up high in the search results you might want to think again. Also check on Amazon to make sure there is not a recent, successful book with the title you are considering. You cannot copyright a book title, so there is nothing to stop you reusing someone else’s title, but it’s better not to compete with someone else who is actively promoting a book with the same name and who got there first.
(Note: If you don’t do it already, keyword research can be useful for honing the title of a blog post. Use the phrasing people are looking for and they are more likely to find your words of wisdom.)
This step is useful for fiction as well as non-fiction. Even though your fiction title will not necessarily tell people what the book is about, by making a tweak to the ideas that you have you may come up with a title that resonates more strongly with your audience and is easier to promote. Keyword research is just a way to find out what people out there in internet-land actually want. And as the internet is the cheapest and most practical way to promote a book today, that is what you need to know.