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The Right Book Reviews Can Boost Readership and Sales

Thanks to the Internet, many readers find, buy, and read (or listen to) books without ever leaving home. There is also a good chance they learn about those books via social media—Twitter, Facebook, or their favorite blogs. Readers regularly turn to book-review bloggers for insight on the vast array of books available digitally and in print. These bloggers offer honest critiques on everything from plot lines and characters to the depth of research and writing style. Their blogs are the perfect format to help first-time authors build awareness of their own books and boost sales.

Getting Better Book Reviews

Reviews are one of the most influential factors in getting people to buy or download your book. Readers credit reviews, particularly on Amazon and Goodreads, with convincing them to sample a new author’s work. If you are still building a fanbase, how do you get quality reviews of your book? Here are six ways to help get your work in front of the right people and broaden your reach.

  1. Pick the right book reviewers. Rather than randomly sending books out for review, look for bloggers who review books in your genre. Their following will likely be your target readers.
  2. Create a database. Build a list of reviewers and contacts. Keep track of their email addresses and when you contacted them. Store detailed information for networking and promotional events.
  3. Know the process. Query bloggers to determine their criteria for book reviews. For example, some will review ebooks, wherease others will not.
  4. Provide copies of your book. Offer to send both print and PDF versions of your book.
  5. Follow up. Give them a reasonable amount of time to respond. If you do not hear back from potential reviewers in a few weeks, contact them.
  6. Thank them. Many bloggers write posts in their spare time rather than for a living. Be sure to let them know how much you appreciate their time and the effort they are putting forth to get the word out to potential readers.

Create a Marketing Kit for the Pre-Launch Push

Part of the preparation for your launch should be to schedule a date to send out book review requests. Your promotional efforts must be a deliberate and coordinated push several months before the big day. Create a marketing kit to take with you to book signings, readings, and conferences and to include along with your book for any book review requests.

What to Include in a Book Review/Marketing Kit:

  • Cover letter/email—A short note explaining who you are and what your book is about. Save the in-depth author info for the bio, however.
  • Press release about your book’s launch—Include this in shipments and attach to emails.
  • A complete PDF of your book—Include the cover of your book, if possible.
  • Print copies of the book—Even if you are using print-on-demand (POD), have some books on hand to give out.
  • Photos of the book and yourself—Have both high- and low-resolution images available to send out upon request.
  • Author bio—Take a creative spin with this. Do not make it a resume. Aim for a news article or interview style. Include it with the books you send.

Why Dog Ear?

Knowing how to reach your target audience can be a mystery to first-time authors, but finding the best reviewers for your book is necessary to boost sales and attract core readers. Having experts to guide you in developing a solid marketing strategy is an invaluable resource. With more than 50 years of traditional publishing experience, Dog Ear Publishing knows what it takes to promote authors and their books. Your book should be a quality reflection of who you are as an author, and our team of experienced editors, proofreaders, and designers can help refine your work into a top-notch finished publication. Visit our website at dogearpublishing today to take control of your publishing destiny.