Hi - I've been looking for threads on testing titles, and haven't found any.
Does anyone have good tools for testing titles? Do many of the folks here do that?
I recently used Google Trends and PickFu to test the title of my book. (I wrote about the process on my blog.) It helped me narrow down to a title with the widest possible appeal, but I'm wondering how many KDP authors do this sort of thing.
And if you do, perhaps you've got some tips for me?
I don't clearly understand what you mean by 'testing' titles. I just try to go with something succinct and catchy that has something to do with the theme of the story.
If I have a title I am afraid might be a title to another book, I will use Google or Bing for that. I have changed at least one title from doing that.
On some occasions I also use Google to double-check the use of names (i.e., if I have a fake business name in the story -- I want to make sure there aren't any real ones that would identify with the one in the story).
I often run a little competition on my website, asking readers for their suggestions for what the next book should be called. Some of the suggestions can be funny and some wildly off-topic, but it's a bit of fun they can play along with. I haven't yet picked something suggested by someone else though. It's just nice to involve my readers somehow.
I don't test them against existing titles or trends though. I just pick something that goes along with both the story and the series.
I have several titles that suck onions and wish I would've explored other options.
Consider including a BISAC category term or a search term in with the title or subtitle. Make sure it fits the genre. "Murder in the Bathtub", "Poolside Romance", "The Bronx Thriller Killer", "Suspense on the Baseball Diamond". Then check at A-zon to see how popular the title is. If there are already 87 other books with similar titles, change it up a little. Look at all the "The Girl Who..." books that have come out in the last few years. Writers keep going back to "Murder on the Greyhound Bus" because it works. Readers know what to expect. Dream up a dozen titles and keep considering them right up to the moment you make your cover.
Something else to consider is how it will look on your cover. Will it fit with the image? Is it easy to remember and pronounce? Make up several mock-ups of your cover with different titles and ask on your blog site. Consider something similar to but not the same as some of the best selling books in your genre.
Yes, I know, it doesn't answer your question but I wanted to share a few thoughts.
I just use a combination of an Amazon search, Google and Bing. If I am clear with those, then I figure I am good. One problem with titles is if I pick an interesting one that I know is very unique, then it will cover up too much of my book's artwork. If I decide to leave more of my cover-art revealed, then the title is harder to read when the cover is shrunk down to thumbnail size.
It's very hard to overcome these problems, but picking a unique title isn't that hard. It's hard to make that title work on your cover.