I’m a really big breakfast person. Any one close to me will tell you that my day is not off to the right start if it doesn’t begin with some type of breakfast meal. Cold breakfast. Hot breakfast. Doesn’t always matter, but it needs to at least be from the breakfast family.
So the other day, while in an area I’m not too familiar with, I go perusing for a local breakfast shop. After a few minutes I see a small place that serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Perfect!
It was called “”Corner Pizzeria””. And on the front window was a huge image of a slice of pizza loaded with toppings and showing long strands of cheese stretching from the sides.
Hmm. Well that slice of pizza looks great, but that’s not really what I’m looking for. And I don’t know how I feel about someone making pepperoni pizza right next to my waffles and potatoes.
So I decide to keep looking.
I then see a place that is simply called “”Bistro””. And directly underneath the name, it also says “”Breakfast. Lunch. Dinner.”” The decor had a real “”cafe”” type feel to it with tables and chairs outside. It didn’t have any food images at all. It was very quaint and seemed like the type of place that might serve a really good breakfast bagel or make really good eggs and bacon.
I chose this place.
So what’s the moral to the story? Well, if you haven’t figured it out its actually pretty simple: presentation matters. It will often determine whether someone chooses you or your competitor. It will affect how someone views a product/service they’ve never tried before to help determine whether or not it’s the right fit for their needs. Had the first place contained a name, logo, or images that were just a tad different, I might have chosen to eat there. But instead, I kept looking.
Ironically, the first place MAY have actually served great breakfast food – but I never gave it a chance. I guess you could say I judged a book by its cover. Maybe I SHOULDN’T have but the bottom line is that I did. And guess what, other people do too. It’s human nature. If something is new to you often times you will judge it from the outside and “”size it up””. If it looks appealing, you might proceed and inquire further. If it doesn’t, you most likely won’t. Often times someone’s thought process really is that simple.
Ever analyzed a product/service based on how professional the website looked?
Ever formed an opinion about someone’s status based on where they live or the type of car they drive?
Ever profiled a potential customer to determine whether they were a good fit for the services you offer?
Ever pre-screened a job applicant based on how their resume and cover letter read?
Of course you have. We all have. We judge books by their covers all the time. Whether we like to admit it or not, we are a population full of critics. Sometimes by trade, sometimes by sheer habit or instinct. But whatever the motive, whatever the scenario, we do in fact judge books by their covers quite often.
So the key to winning this “battle of the book covers”” is to make sure that YOUR book cover is as attractive as possible and communicates a message that speaks volumes and really connects with your target audience. If you’ve ever wondered how a really bad product is able to sell so much – this just might be how they do it.
If you want this customer to actually stop what they’re doing and open your book, your presentation has to convince them that your book is in fact worth reading.