Tuesday, 14 January 2014

The Value of a Review

The publishing industry is rapidly opening up to independently published authors, and what's the new valuable currency for this new flock of writers? Book reviews. When an author gets a positive review on Amazon or Goodreads, it not only provides valuable feedback, but can also help to drive the sales of the book.
Here's how independent authors use reviews:
- Before a book is published an author often seeks "beta reviewers". These are readers, usually solicited by the author from their circle of friends, from Facebook writer forums, or from Goodreads (I've had great success finding beta readers from this site). Beta readers give honest feedback before the novel is published. They're like a test market for the book. Often the author asks the readers to post these reviews on Amazon and Goodreads as part of a book launch strategy.

- Book reviews help authors to get promotional spots on important sites like BookBub, the grandaddy of e-book promotion. Check the link to see how much they charge to promote a wide variety of books, and how many downloads you can expect to sell as a result. Sites like BookBub, Kindle Nation Daily, Pixel of Ink etc. often base their decision to promote you on how many reviews you have, and many sites won't consider you if you don't have enough.
 Most writers spend a great deal of time soliciting reviews from various bloggers dedicated to reviewing indie books and there are many tireless readers out there who spend their lives reading and reviewing an endless stream of indie and traditionally published books. Four great bloggers who took the time to review some of my books are:
+Zili Robins , +Jessica Nicole , +Laura Greenwood , +Deborah McKnight . Check out their blogs to see just how supportive they are of all the new and established writers out there.

Some writers pay respected review sites like Kirkus Reviews to write a professional, unbiased review. Kirkus charges $425 for a review, and takes up to 9 weeks to deliver it ($575 if you want to expedite it). If you don't like the review, you can file it away and nobody needs to know about your unpleasant little secret. If it's a good review, you can celebrate. It could make your book a bestseller. Check out Darci Chan's success story by clicking on the link.

I guess my final message is this. If you've read someone's book, take the time to review it. It's so easy to put a review on Amazon or Goodreads and it could really help an aspiring author get noticed in this rapidly expanding marketplace.

Check out these 5 star reviews on Amazon UK. Click here

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