Creating titles and subtitles

Creating titles, subtitles and deciding what is it about

Go back to your working title. You are now going to expand this and go deeper.

We asked these questions earlier and now we are asking again. It's important to have the right title.

What is your book about? What are it's goals and what do you want your reader to do as a result of reading it?

What are your books goals:-

  • Build a brand
  • Launch a program or online course
  • Speaking

Do this first as this will help you to find the right title and subtitle.

A good title won't help you to sell your book, but it will give it a fighting chance. An obscure title will not help at all.

Buyers go through a process when they buy a book

  1. They are looking for something specific so they browse that category. They may have also asked for a recommendation which leads them to that category.
  2. They look at
    1. Titles and subtitles
    2. Cover
    3. The back blurb - the book's description
    4. They look inside at the chapter titles
    5. The author bio and may go off to research them more
    6. The price

You want to:-

  • Keep it simple
  • Grab attention
  • Encourage action

The title, including the subtitle, must give the reader some sort of idea of what the book is about.

My book Plan your non-fiction book in a weekend does just that, provides a planning framework which can be tackled in one or a series of weekends.

Book titles

  • Brainstorm your ideas
  • Start with long titles and then make them shorter and shorter
  • Narrow down your ideas
  • Think keywords and what someone might search for on Google or Amazon
  • What are the benefits or the outcome?
  • Remember your ideal reader
  • What problems does your book solve?
  • Could there be a number of steps or laws?
  • Consider metaphors, alliterations, slang and popular phrases
  • Could you coin a new phrase?
  • Ask if someone asked me what the title of my book was, would I have to go into a lengthy explanation of what is is about, or does it make sense with the title and subtitle?
  • Don't overthink
  • Make it easy to say
  • Go back to your visualisation and imagine others talking about your book. How does it feel to have your title mentioned? What do you think the reaction of the others in the conversation might be?
  • Pick your favourites and test them

Most importantly have fun and let the title sit with you.

ACTION: Follow the steps, brainstorm titles, ask for feedback, reflect and choose