Getting Book Reviews
You’re a perfect ten. Yup. You’re a ten or even more. What am I talking about? Well, I’m talking about your book reviews, of course.
You see, when people click on our self-published Amazon book, one of the things they are going to look for is book reviews. They are going to want to know how many book reviews you have so far. And if they see only one or two book reviews done by somebody with the same last name as you, they’re not going to be impressed. They’ll probably click off and go to someone else’s book. However, if they see at least 10 book reviews, it will offer them some comfort that your book is a good one.
Hey, guess what my indie authors? Getting that minimum of 10 book reviews is hard to do. Sure, you can ask your friends and family for book reviews. But, most of them aren’t going to do it. You may get four or five out of your friends and family. But that’s about all you’ll get.
Book reviews are just too much work for most of your friends and family members who may like you, but they’re not that invested in your book. Think about this for a minute. Giving you a book review is a huge job for them. And they aren’t getting paid for it.
They have to read your book, which could take them a week or more to do. Most people just don’t have that amount of time to just give away. Next, they have to figure out how the Amazon book review thing works. This will scare away a few. Then they have to write something that the whole world will be able to see. For many people who are not authors, this is scary. The bottom line is that we won’t get our magic number of 10 or more book reviews from our family and friends.
So what do we do? Well, there are some paid services that do book reviews. But we’ll have to pay for that. These services are expensive. And I know most of us don’t like the word expensive. Something costing us a lot of money, kind of goes against everything we represent as authorpreneurs.
Next, there are some forums that might help us out. We’ll have to spend a lot of time posting on these forums, though. Nobody likes a taker. So we can’t just show up and ask for book reviews. But if we spend a bunch of time there, we could get a few reviews. However, using up a lot of our time is our enemy to being quicker and more productive authorpreneur.
We could also send a free copy of our book to the influencers in our field. We may get a few reviews here. But this is very expensive and very time consuming too.
We could go to library groups and/or Goodreads. These things take a lot of time and money as well.
Sadly, getting book reviews takes a lot of time, effort, and money. The truth is that out of every 100 people that read our books, we’ll only get a couple of book reviews from them. The challenge is how to take charge of this process of being an authorpreneur and make these book reviews happen. They’re not going to just happen on their own beyond just a handful. And with only a handful of reviews, people will click off of our book and go look at someone else’s book. In addition, the other challenge we face is how to do this without spending too much of our time and money.
I like putting together street teams or book launch teams. They are both the same thing. I find a group of people to help me promote my book on social media as I’m writing it. I send them my book for free. And then, on the first week of my book being LIVE on Amazon, I ask them to write book reviews for me. I can always get at least 10 reviews this way. It takes some work, but it’s doable, and we have the magic number of being a perfect 10 or more on the first week of our book is on Amazon.
So, how do we do this? Well, let me give you a quick guideline here. After all, you’re going to tweak it to fit your own unique needs anyway. So, while I’m writing a book, I reach out to about 50-60 people who have been following me and commenting on my social media posts. I also look for people that have given me book reviews before. Out of those 50-60 people, I can get almost half of them to agree to be part of my book launch or street team. Maybe 20-25 will say yes.
Next, I tag these 20-25 people on my social media post when I’m talking about my upcoming book. Hopefully, most of them hit like or add a comment. This is a very simple way to get a tiny bit of engagement from them. And a small engagement is like a little yes, which can lead to a bigger yes.
When I finish a decent draft of my manuscript, I send the 20-25 people a copy of it via email. This is free. I don’t have to pay anything for them to receive my book, or maybe I should say the manuscript. I periodically reach out to them to see how they are enjoying the manuscript. I also keep including them in social media posts. During this time, I also remind them of how I would love an Amazon book review from them when the book goes LIVE.
When the book does go LIVE, I thank them and remind them again about the Amazon review. I gift them the $0.99 eBook version for their time. Out of the 20-25 people, I usually get around 10 book reviews. If I fall a little short, I follow up in a couple of days, and then I typically get a couple more that puts me over the threshold of 10.
Now, remember, we aren’t done yet. This is just the start of getting book reviews, but it’s a decent start for the first week. Now, if you’re willing to put in extra time, instead of initially reaching out to 50-60 people to be part of your book launch or street team, you could reach out to a few hundred. With that number going through your funnel, you’re guaranteed to get a lot more than 10 book reviews that first week. You’ll also have to spend a lot more time, too.
The choice is yours. But, remember, either way, you’re not done. This is a marathon, not a sprint, right? Eventually, Amazon will be looking for new book reviews, so you’re work in getting book reviews is never done… Remember, life is a journey, not a destination.
*Check out the free video lesson on this chapter!