In my previous post, I talked about how to convert a presentation to a report or e-book. This week, I want to show you how to design a cover for that report or e-book in PowerPoint. If you aren’t a designer and yet want to design an e-book or report cover in PowerPoint, you’ll find it a simple way to go. You already know the program, so there isn’t a learning curve like there would be for Photoshop or another high-end program. At the end of this post, I’ll suggest some other programs you can use instead.
I’ll also explain how easy it is to create the 3D image of the cover you see here.
What size will it be?
A report will almost always be 8-1/2 x 11 (or A4). But an e-book (I’m not talking about a Kindle book) can be any size. I prefer 6×9 because:
- Many paperbacks are that size or a similar size
- It gives the book more pages
Whatever size you choose, set your slide size to that. To set the slide size, click the Design tab, then Slide Size or Page Setup. Choose Custom Slide Size to set the size you want. Set the Orientation to Portrait.
Keep it simple
Since (I’m assuming) you aren’t a designer, you want to keep it simple. The basic concepts are:
- Use a white background
- A border is optional
- Use a band of bright color — or even two
- Use white text on the band
- Find an big, bold image or make a collage, like the one I created for the middle of the cover
- Put your name and credentials at the bottom
- A subtitle can help entice people to buy because it explains the value of the book
Sketch out your cover on a piece of paper. That’s right, paper. Then simply add shapes (rectangles), text boxes, and images. Move everything around until it looks good.
Export the slide as an image either by selecting everything, right-clicking and choosing Save as Picture, or by choosing File, Save As and choosing on of the image options from the Save as Type drop-down list. Ask a few friends for feedback.
Insert the cover into your report or e-book
Then insert the image into the beginning of your Word document. For image wrapping, choose square or tight to get the most flexibility to place and size the image the way you want it.
Make it 3D
The purpose for a 3D cover is just to present it as a product on a sales page. Here are the steps:
- Insert the image of the cover
- Right-click and choose Format Picture.
- In the 3-D Rotation section, click the Presets arrow and choose one of the options. I often use “Off Axis 2 Left” in the Parallel section.
- In the 3-D Format section, in the Depth area, increase the size until the book looks big enough. (Don’t exaggerate!)
- In the Lighting area, increase the Angle setting until the side of the book (the depth) doesn’t look so black; 70 degrees usually works for me.
- In the Shadow section, click the Presets arrow and choose one of the options. I usually choose “Perspective Diagonal Upper Right” in the Perspective area.
- Right-click and choose Save as Picture.
That should take you under a minute and it’s a great look for a sales page.
Other design options
For non-designers, there are a number of online graphic design websites. All let you combine images and text. Here are a few that I know of:
Have you designed an e-book or report cover in PowerPoint? What tips can you share? Leave a comment! And share this post with others because they might find it useful — just use the Share buttons below.