How to get customers flocking towards your book? #amwriting #books #bookmarketing
Posted on April 23, 2018
Did I get your attention? I got mine, too.
My response to the question is simple – no clue.
I know an author that doesn’t like giving away free copies. Her reasoning is that – whatever you send out, you get back. Nothing’s wrong with her reasoning and I’m actually all for it. Giving away free copies doesn’t help, but we as far as self-published authors go, always give away free copies at some point. We use the reasoning that we want reviews and to raise up on the Amazon scale. There’s nothing wrong with that. Just remember to play by the rules.
Book bloggers figured out how to get free books and how to make money if they also organize book tours. Authors figured out which book bloggers to choose for book tours and reviews.
Some even take easy routes – choosing book bloggers who say that they only write reviews for books that rate 3 stars or above. That’s one way to keep up the ratings. However, not all of those bloggers agree to read your book so at the end you have less choices and a smaller audience for reaching out to potential customers. Other authors are okay with bloggers who say that they can rate their books at 1 stars and send their books. So if you get a 1 star review, bad reviews can get you customers as well. Some bad reviews even sell your book better than the good ones. Taking the easy route isn’t always the best for authors. Take time on making decisions, especially the ones with book marketing.
At the beginning, I was an author who felt hurt over 2 stars and I cried. I admit it. But, I did learn from a book blogger that I needed to grow an extra skin to be in the world of authors and I’m not just talking about self-published authors. When a reviewer asked if I was okay with their 2 star review, I asked not to post it and they agreed. After a year passed, the same blogger read my 2nd edition and I received a 5 stars and I jumped for joy. Biased. I was totally biased. That was my second lesson. I should have accepted that two stars so I could boast later that my 2nd edition did improve. Those experiences didn’t allow customers to flock to my books and I lost that book blogger. The other book blogger, I can still contact because I learned about attitude. I think I mentioned before in my posts about being nice to book bloggers. It’s always true because book bloggers remember the good authors and the bad ones especially. Those experienced led me to a blogger who gave me a low rating but was willing to read my second book because I wasn’t scared of her criticism and accepted her review. Now, I’m not afraid of criticisms, bad reviews, and bad correspondences. That allows me to create new connections with other authors and book bloggers. Sure, I had to learn it the hard way, but hey we have to learn some lessons the hard way.
I got off the topic. How to get customers flocking towards your book?
I don’t know. All I can do is continue doing cover reveals, book tours, and reaching out to book bloggers. Maybe just maybe readers would get interested in my works and get them to return.
What I do know is that an author needs to keep writing and learning. Writing more books can get you readers who will return again and again to read you. At the end, that’s what matters – readers who would be dedicated to you. For that to work, one needs to continue writing and reaching out to the people who can help you and sometimes it means handing over free copies. In return you get reviews and gain new friends.
If you’re a successful author, how were you able to get customers flocking for more copies? What lessons did you learn along the way? Are you able to admit to them?
Until next time,
“Some bad reviews even sell your book better than the good ones.” A low-rating review in which the reviewer says WHY they didn’t like the book can be very good for sales, depending on the reasons given. If the reviewer didn’t like a book because it had ‘too much romance and not enough action scenes,’ that will attract potential readers who WANT more romance and fewer action scenes. If a reviewer says, ‘I hate that this space opera novel is space opera, it reminds me of something by E. E. “Doc” Smith,’ that’s going to make the book more appealing to readers who want old-fashioned sci-fi adventure.
I don’t know what you consider successful. According to statistics, I’m at least ahead of the curve, especially for an indie with fewer than five books published, because I’m making SOME money each year. And I do next to no marketing. (I’m actually half of a writing team: It’s my twin’s name on the covers of the books, but we work on the stories together, and I do all the editing plus the “marketing,” such as it is. Mostly I just post occasionally about our books on my blog, which has fewer than five hundred followers, so it’s not as if the word is going out to thousands of people every week.) I recently read about a study showing that marketing has little to no effect on indie book sales. The things that DO make a difference are 1) having a well-written and WELL-EDITED book, and 2) having a good cover. Word-of-mouth is the only form of promotion that has been shown to work much anyway, and that requires a book that people want to recommend to friends.
Reviews by book bloggers MAY help, because that’s a form of word-of-mouth, but we shouldn’t expect huge results as a DIRECT response to the review. A good review (or a beneficial “bad” review) gets the attention of a few readers, who read the book, like it, and tell their friends… It’s a slow process, and even the “overnight successes” weren’t actually overnight successes; they just didn’t get noticed until they became hugely successful, with gives the illusion that it all happened at once.
A lesson learned: Don’t go giveaways on Goodreads. A lot of people there will grab ANY free book, but that doesn’t mean they’ll ever read it, much less leave a review, and giving away print books is too costly.
Thank you for your response and I agree about Goodreads!
I’d say your successful then. I wasn’t sure what I meant about it myself but I think that every indie author should feel successful because they had the guts to do something about their writing and that’s share it with the world. ^_^
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