Do you want to elevate your book’s marketing aesthetic, but you’re unsure how to make marketing materials and social media graphics like an expert? The answer is 3D book mock-ups! Less intimidating than it sounds, a “book mock-up” is the general term for a number of online templates that are designed to turn your cover image into 3D promotion graphics just like the professionals make. Keep reading to learn more about how to create book mock-ups, where to find them online, and suggestions on where to use them in your book’s marketing materials.

Luckily for marketing beginners and experts alike, most book mock-up generators are incredibly easy to use, free, and only have three steps. Usually, you just choose a 3D mock-up, upload your cover image, and download your mock-up. However, finding good quality, free versions of online tools like book mock-up generators can sometimes be challenging, not to mention that it’s nerve-racking to visit and download files from unfamiliar websites—but don’t worry! I’m sharing several tried-and-true 3D book mock-up generators in the hope of saving you that trouble. In no particular order, my trusted mock-up generators are:

Although each of these mock-up generators is a good option, not all generators are created equal. For example, Book in Motion’s Mock-Up Tool offers mock-ups that incorporate your cover image into an alternative setting in addition to making the cover 3D. Boxshot’s 3D Book Cover Maker, on the other hand, only provides users with a 3D image of their cover (with a transparent background), but their generator offers users more control over the final product’s camera angles and lighting. In other words, Boxshot’s 3D Book Cover Maker constantly renders a realistic model of your book, which allows for more camera, light, and shadow flexibility. Boxshot’s generator is definitely advanced and offers more options than some of the other mock-up generators listed above, but don’t be intimidated. After just a few minutes of playing with your cover in Boxshot, even those with no design or marketing experience will quickly grasp how easy it is to use the tool.

Regardless of which mock-up generator you choose, make sure that your mock-up choice is the best fit for your end product. For example, if you’re designing a tipsheet, it’s better to use a mock-up that makes the title 3D and gives it a transparent background rather than using a mock-up that nestles your book under a tree in a well-lit forest. The latter would be perfect for a social media post, though! Wherever you use them, book mock-ups are sure to elevate your book marketing graphics on social media, in launch emails, and in advertising campaigns so that your promotional materials are one step closer to looking like an expert’s.

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