I Bought a Book and Hated It – And Why I Loved Hating It

With a bold title like “Get Your $hit Together,” I was instantly drawn in. The brown cover with a thick, black font made it look intense and blunt – like this book would finally be brutally honest with me about getting organized. After all, I’ve got a lot of shit, and it’s all over the place. And the opening line? “It’s 5:11 am, and you have to pee – again.” Yes! I was hooked from the very first sentence! This felt like the no-nonsense, bold advice I’d been waiting for, and while I wasn’t quite sure what having to pee in the middle of the night had to do with that. I could relate, and it made me want to read on.
But then, in the very next paragraph, it took an unexpected swerve: “Your period is late.” Wait…what? As a dude, I suddenly found myself in unfamiliar territory. She continued to describe buying a pregnancy test and wondering about her fate. My enthusiasm faded, and my confusion increased, but I read on – for only one more page.

It quickly became clear that despite the broader title, “Get Your $hit Together,” it was a handbook for “Financially Empowered Moms.” How do I know? The tiny subtitle that I only now realized after downloading the book read, “The Rebel Mama’s Handbook for Financially Empowered Moms,” revealed the true target audience. It seemed wildly inconsistent for a brown cover with thick black typography – a very masculine look. While the bold title and typography attracted me initially, the design failed to effectively repel those outside of the author’s intended readership, as proven by my holding the book in my hand.

The brilliance of the author’s written approach in capturing her ideal readers’ attention within the first page was wonderful. The opening lines about late periods and pregnancy tests were perfectly crafted for expectant mothers grappling with impending parenthood. But the cover’s masculine color scheme and minimal subtitle let the visual component of the pitch down.
This experience can teach us two valuable lessons about pitching to your niche:

First: A pitch’s “hook” isn’t just about the words. Visual design elements like imagery, typography, and color schemes play an equally vital role in attracting the right audience.

Next: If your pitch doesn’t effectively repel the audience you don’t want, it won’t be strong enough to attract those you do want. While the writing voice brilliantly spoke to expectant mothers, the visuals told a different story—one that drew me in before I realized I wasn’t the intended reader. This likely means that expectant mothers who are excited about their babies’ arrival but worried about their finances would not be as attracted to the book either.

For expectant mothers needing financial guidance, “Get Your $hit Together” could be just what they need once they get past the cover mishap. As for me, it served as a lesson that every aspect of your pitch – words and visuals – must cohesively attract your ideal audience while gently pushing others away. Otherwise, your message risks getting muddled before it can hit its mark.

If you like this quick tip and would like more, feel free to check out my YouTube playlist, “Minute to Pitch It,” where you can watch several 60-second videos dedicated to helping you pitch with more clarity, credibility, and, most importantly, believability. https://youtu.be/pXQBSkv4cG8?si=_8n_bIumjf6tu89V

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