Using Ebook Covers to Brand an Author Across Genres

Happy Sunday, WG2E-Land!

Here’s to hoping all of you fabulous snowbound peeps are safe and warm following Winter Storm Nemo.

Speaking of Nemo, the little guy (as in the fish version) has quite the brand recognition, doesn’t he?

This weekend we’re all focusing on a major winter storm of historical proportions named Nemo. But just mentioning the word/name “Nemo” makes us all not only think of the fantabulous fish character but also brings that association from the animated feature film genre into a meteorologist’s wonderland too!

I even found a Facebook picture of someone out East who’d made a Nemo in the snow, in color. (‘Course I can’t find the photo now…LOL!) There were also a ton of fun news channel images like this one…

So, what can an author do to make their brand go across genres like Nemo?

In other words, as an author, you want your author name and books, regardless of genre, to trigger that kind of visceral association. Something along the lines of “oh, that’s gotta be a D. D. Scott book” or “oh, that’s gotta be a (your name here) book.”

Here are a few of the things I’ve done with my Ebook Covers to carry my D. D. Scott Brand across all of the genres I now write in (romantic comedy, humorous mystery, humorous police procedurals and now witchery paranormal too):

1. My Byline (“D. D. Scott”) on my Ebook Covers is the same font and style across all genres.

2. Once I found my humorous niche (starting with my second series, The Cozy Cash Mysteries), meaning that everything I now write, regardless of genre, has a strong dose of humor, I have stuck with wonderful illustrated covers. ***Note: Even my non-fiction books are humorous, so I’ve used the illustrated covers there too.

3. I’ve kept my color schemes bright and full of energy…no darkness or despair.

Okay, Peeps…there are a few of my Ebook Cover tricks to carry my brand across all of the genres I write.

Let’s here about a few of your tricks…What are you doing to make each book you write, regardless of genre, fit your brand?

The Best of Ebook Cover Wishes — D. D. Scott

D. D. Scott is an Amazon and Barnes and Noble Top 100 Bestselling Romantic Comedy and Humorous Mystery Author. She’s also a Writer’s Go-To-Gal for Muse Therapy and Indie Epublishing, the Co-Founder of The WG2E- The Writer’s Guide to E-Publishing, and the Founder of The RG2E – The Reader’s Guide to E-publishing.  You can get all the scoop on her, her books, her Online Classes and Live Workshops, plus juicy tidbits too from her new cyber home…D. D. Scott-ville.

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  1. Love your covers — I’m pretty happy with mine since a lot of people seem to like them. There’s also the contingent who doesn’t so I might get new covers. The ones I have have bright colors — I write humorous sweet contemporary.

  2. Sibel Hodge says:

    Yep, I totally agree on keeping the themes similar throughout your books to make them stand out with your brand. Although, if you write in different genres, you need to make sure the cover/font is genre-appropriate. I don’t think my curly fonts and bright covers would work so well with my psychological thriller! ;)

    • D. D. Scott says:

      Excellent point, Sibel!

      If you write both dark (like your thrillers) and light (humorous), that can be a wee bit more challenging.

      Personally, I might pick a bold font for my byline and stick with it OR you could keep say the titles always at the top and byline at the bottom or reverse and let the fonts along with the color schemes give that visceral dark or light mood for the reader.

  3. Mandy Baggot says:

    Great post! I’m with you D.D. I keep the font and style of my name and the title of the book the same for all of them. I also have a silhouette theme going on. As I write contemporary romance this is usually a couple in silhouette form. However, my next book is a romantic thriller about a singer, so that book just has the silhouette of a woman. A subtle difference but represents a slight change in genre without changing the brand.


  4. Thank you. Some terrific ideas as I move forward. I’m revising two of my books right now, I’ll be using this concept to create new covers.

  5. Suzanne says:

    How did you find your book cover designer? Do you use the same person for every cover? Thanks!

    • D. D. Scott says:

      From Carats & Coconuts on (check my website D. D. Scottville for the order), I’ve used the fabulous Laura Morrigan. She’s just brilliant and very reasonable as far as cost.
      Just luuuvvv her!!!

      Prior to that, I used Shelley at Webcrafters Designs. And three have been done by my college intern for credit towards her graphic design degree at IU in Bloomington.

  6. Jeanne says:

    I love ALL of your covers AND your writing style….keep them coming!

  7. D.D., I love your brand and definitely know it’s *you* when I see it! I’m still working on my own brand. I know what it is–humorous whimsy with an edge–but my book covers are all over the place. For example, my book cover for INTO YOU, my humorous mystery, is very different from the covers on my romantic comedy CARPE DiEMILY books, which are more “chick litish.” My newest book, a spinoff of the Fifty Shades series (titled FIFTY SHADES OF FIFTY SHADES OF GREY, to be released today) has a cover that is more similar to INTO YOU, but it is still in its own category. The main thing that comes through in all four covers is a humorous flavor. However, I love how your books, and books like Jennifer Weiner’s or Emily Giffin’s, all have a distinct look and feel that runs through all the books. You know a D.D. Scott book when you see one, or a Jennifer Weiner book, just by its cover. For my books, you wouldn’t know they were all by me just be seeing them on the shelves, except for my name. So I’m still trying to figure that one out. But who knows, maybe one day my name will be good enough, provided its bigger than the title and takes up the whole page – LOL! (One can dream, anyway).

  8. Alison Pensy says:

    This is a great post. I keep my young adult series brand connected with lightning on every cover but I chose a completely different look along with a different name for my romance. I will probably keep the two separate. But I hadn’t actually given any thought to carrying my brand across genres before reading this post. Definitely food for thought.

    Hope DH is feeling better :-)

  9. Angela Brown says:

    Dark and despair would not do well for the humorous niche at all, however, my writing has a strong leaning to dark, despair and more lol! So the cover I have for my YA debut novel, Neverlove, is a cover that shows that with the tear dripping from the cover model’s eye, the heartbreak like a weight on her shoulder and visible to her soul through her eye. Plus the fiery red and black background hint at the darkness in her life and the ability she comes into.

    The cover artist and I have already done a bit of looking at male cover models for the sequel to Neverlove, which will, again, have some darkness to it so the cover will reflect a bit of it. Or I might try something symbolic of the darkness.

  10. JamieSalisbury (@JamieRSalisbury) says:

    So far what I have done with my covers is keep the fonts the same for series (and try to keep the theme/background the same if not similar). And I try to keep the same cover artist going on a series.
    As I write romances so far Jimmy Thomas has graced all my covers. However, I am in the middle of a brand-new series which is about four sisters, so I will be looking for something fresh and new to portray my stories on each of these covers. Each books is around one particular sister. . .
    I like you idea of keeping your name in the same font on each book DD. I hadn’t thought about that. A great concept!
    Covers are important – can make or break a book. . .

  11. So far my two contemporary romance novels have similar images and the same font style – this was important as they are linked stories. I’m after a new look for my new series of cosy mysteries, maybe illustrated covers, but I will keep one element the same as the others, probably the author font. Love the fun fresh look of your covers, D.D., and love the diversity too! :)

    • D.D. Scott says:

      Great point, Joanne, regarding keeping a similar image running across each particular series.

      Here’s what I’ve done:

      1. My Cozy Cash Mysteries all have a bag of cash with a number in the middle of the dough letting readers know which book in the series it is (1-4)

      2. My Stuck with a Series books all say “The Stuck with a Series – Book # _” and have a farm element of some sort and/or an outside, nature setting.

      3. My Belle Bishop Books all begin with “Practical” and then they’ll say “Belle Bishop, Queen of Witches, Book _”. Plus, they’ll all have a sparkle effect.

      4. The Bootscootin’ Books all used real people images instead of the illustrations.