The biggest problem I have with promoting my work is a dire lack of reviews. I know so many people on Twitter and FB and they get hundreds of reviews. One of the first things I heard about finding reviews was to ask people who read the book and liked it to post a short review on Amazon. Ha! I love my friends, but most of them, even if they read the book, are never going to do this.
Just to insert, I do have a few friends who post reviews. You know who you are and you have my eternal gratitude.
So step two is finding reviewers. There are tons of them out there. For my last book, my publisher sent galleys to maybe 20 review sites. I got 2 reviews. I think I might have 8 reviews on one book, and I don’t know all the reviewers, or I’d send them a big thank you. They could be friends, they could be someone who stumbled upon me by accident.
There’s work to be done to court reviewers. You need to 1. find them 2. ask them 3. send them a galley. And I can’t send to any of the reviewers my publisher sends copies to. That’s called overkill. So there’s a bit of checking and so forth. Does this sound difficult or like a lot of work?
It’s not, it just takes organization and time. I can pay someone hundreds of dollars to find reviewers or I can take a couple hours and dedicate myself to the list I’ve made of reviewers who like the kind of books I write. Contemporary. Small town. Fairly steamy. So finding the right reviewers is like finding the right publisher. Gotta do your homework.
Oh how I wish I had more time to devote to this, but right now I’m wearing two hats. (And my kitchen is a mess. We didn’t even eat at home yesterday so how’d that happen?) BUT happy happy, a new group of people have formed. A small, exclusive group. And I am one of them. We all have a major thing in common, so I know they can be trusted.
I love my new supergroup because these women are team promo. We all have the same goals. Some of us (all of them) know a lot more than others (me) about the promo game. That’s something I’d tell a new writer: find a group with similar goals to your own and bond. Become a promo team, cheering each other on in various ways.
Love this post!!! Thanks for the advice on reviewers. I haven’t even started trying to get reviewers. Sounds like another spreadsheet is needed!
Nia, It’s a bit difficult finding willing reviewers who are not on our publisher’s list. TWRP does great work, but it’s always good to find MORE reviewers, lol.
I know I’m one of the people you mentioned who has loads of the wee things… I’m often asked where I get all my reviews from and all I can say is… 80% of them are just from people who liked the books… if you do a free promotion you always get more, simply because the book gets read by so many more people! Before I did my first free promo all I had was about 10 reviews for You Wish, by my friends who’d read it – the free promo got me loads more – then the reviews got me more sales, etc etc. Book bloggers are wonderful, too, of course. They do a marvellous thing for we writers – if I wasn’t one of the latter I’d be the former – one day I shall have a book blog myself, when I have written all the books I will ever write…. joke! Anyway, I sent my new one to 8 of them as soon as it comes out. What I do is keep an eye out for book reviewers who follow me, or who I see on other sites – follow them, look at their blogs, retweet their posts, send them your book, too! That’s how I got to know the book bloggers who review my books regularly – I asked them!!!! 😀 😀
As usual, so generous with your process, Terry! Thanks. When you put it like that, it sounds simple. And you introduced me to two of my favorite reviewers last book, who now this book have offered to host me on their blogs! So thanks for that. I’m excited for your new book:)