Do Whatever The Task Takes
By Terry Whalin @terrywhalin
Last month, my latest book, 10 Publishing Myths, released into the bookstores (online plus brick and mortar). Even though I've published many books, every book is exciting and a fresh opportunity. It never grows old to me. If you have a new book (or even one that has been out a while), one of the most important things you can do to market your book is to get others to review your book. Why?
Thousands of new books are released into the market every day—and there are already many other books already in the market. Your book has to stand out and get attention (whatever it is about) for others to see it and purchase it. Someone has to hear about your book probably eight to a dozen times before they actually decide to purchase it (a well-known sales statistic). In this article, I want to give you some ideas how to get reviews and encourage you to do whatever it takes to get those reviews.
1. Ask others. If you are active in an email group (as I am), tell others about your need for reviews and ask them to help you. I'm in a couple of groups and encouraged people to private message me about reading my new book. A number of people have responded and I've gotten a few reviews from taking this action.
2. As people respond to your request, ask them what they need for the review. Do they prefer an ebook or a print book? If it is a print book do they want it to be signed or not? Sign it to them or to someone else? Everyone is different what they want and will use. For example, one friend did not want the PDF version of my book but wanted the MOBi version. I didn't have this version so had to return to my publisher and ask for it. The process took a few days but eventually I got the MOBi version for this friend. In the process, I saved the MOBi version and will send it to others who need this version. I've already had a second person ask for the MOBi version and because I had it, was able to send it right away.
Other people prefer a print version of the book. To send this version, you need their mailing address and whether they want the book signed or not. Some people do not prefer signed books while others do. As with the ebook, it is a choice and you have to ask to make sure you are giving your readers what they want and need to write the review.
3. Give them some additional help. While I have written many reviews over the years, other people have no idea how to write a review. Sandra Beckwith created this inexpensive yet important tool (follow this link to purchase). If it is a print book, then I print a couple of pages and tuck it into the back of the book when I mail it. If it is an ebook, I send it along withi the ebook. Also I created a promotion page for my book. This page includes links to three spots in particular where I need reviews (Goodreads, Barnes & Noble and Amazon).
Most authors just focus on Amazon (which is a huge player in the book business—but not the only player). My advice is to include all these companies. I give the exact page or link where they can go to write their review. My purpose is to make it easy for them to write and post their review.
Does it work? Not always. People are busy and have good intentions but don't always get the book read and your review written. Or it may be months down the road they will actually do it. I mention this fact because you will need to enlist way more people to do this process than will actually get it done. For example, if you want 25 reviews, you will need to ask and get commitments from at least 50 people. Yes half of them will not do it but the other half will do it and you will get your review. My key point in this article is to do whatever it takes to get the reviews. And—keep asking people to help you. Otherwise they forget that you need their reviews.
Take action today. Make a list of the people and steps you are going to take.
Am I missing an action idea you can take? Or maybe you have other feedback. Let me know in the comments below.
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