by Eddie Jones
Here we are in the midst of the most important shopping season of the year and (perhaps) your book languishes in the lost-but-not-found section of Amazon, B&N.com and Christianbooks.com. Oh what is a poor author to do, Cindy Lou?
Get more reviews for you.
That’s right, increasingly customers turn to online reviews written to learn if a book is worth purchasing. What amateur reviewers lack in highbrow sensibilities, they make up in credibility and relevancy.
Fire Up Your Tribe
How can these reviews help you? Credibility. Amazon doesn’t say it explicitly, but the more reviews your book receives, the higher it may appear in their “relevant” search rankings. This is why you need to begin working to gain reviews for your book before and after its release. How? With book giveaways on Goodreads, blog tours, promotions and sending galley copies to friends. In return ask those individuals who compliment you on your book to post a review on Amazon and other online sites.
Your book will need 100 reviews to be considered a serious book. The bar is high because customers are reluctant to post reviews. Readers know this so when they see a book with 100 or more reviews they know the book merits consideration.
Combat Negative Reviews
Even a poor review can be good-if the reviewer shares pertinent facts about your book that other readers might find interesting. For example, a comment like: “Too preachy” might turn off some readers and attract inspirational readers. However, multiple one star reviews can slow sales or kill your book’s momentum, so when a reader congratulates you on your book ask for their help. Send an email or contact them via Facebook and say:
“Thank you for the kind words about my book. If you have a spare moment, it would be a great help if you could post a review on Amazon and let other potential readers know why you liked (add your book’s title here). It’s not necessary to write a lengthy, formal review-a summary of the comments you sent me in your email would be great. (you may want to copy and paste what they sent as a reminder.)
Here’s a link to the review page for my book:
(Include the actual link to your book’s review form page. Note: you will need to replace ASIN with your book’s ASIN number, like this:
The link should take you to the review page for Skull Creek Stakeout, the second book in my Zonderkidz Caden Chronicles series. You can find your book’s ASIN on the web address at your book’s Amazon page. (See the image below.)
Use this canned text anytime you see a negative review appear for your book. Also send it to fans who praised your book but have not posted a review.
Offer Amazon gift cards as a “thank you”
Give Amazon gift cards as a “thank you” to readers who post a positive review. Do not send them the gift card first in return for the review. This is in violation of Amazon’s review policy. However, if your publisher runs a 99 cent special for your ebook and fans contact you to say they bought book during the promotion, say thanks with a $1 Amazon gift card.
The truth is, a review on Amazon is gold, so the next time your author friend has a birthday, give them a positive review of their book on Amazon. This will mean more to their career than you can imagine.