Reviews help sell books. Consumers rarely believe advertising alone. They want to know if the dollars they will be spending on a product are going to prove worthwhile.
This is where reviews come in. Reviews let consumers know that the money they are considering spending on your book will give them a fair return. In fact, studies show that 90% of consumers read online reviews, and up to 88% say they trust online reviews and comments created by other consumers.
Getting book reviews for your book does not need to be difficult or time consuming. All you have to do is ask. Following are five suggestions for asking for book reviews.
1. Ask in your book.
You can ask in the back pages of your book. At the end of your book, devote a page to letting your readers know how much their opinion matters to you and others readers. Ask in a polite fashion for the reader to share his thoughts on your book with other readers through posting a review on their favorite online bookstore, your website, or your book’s Facebook page.
2. Ask when you fulfill book orders.
If you fulfill your own book orders, send a simple notice with the book you are mailing out—or in the email you send confirming the purchase—asking the reader to share their thoughts on the book via a review.
3. Ask when readers contact you.
Sometimes readers will contact you, the author, through email or social media to let you know how your book impacted their lives. When you receive these types of comments, always respond. Thank the individual for reading your book and for sharing her thoughts with you. Let her know how much this means to you. Then, ask her nicely to share these thoughts with other potential readers so they too can benefit from the book.
4. Ask on your website.
Your book’s website should contain a “review” or “testimonial” section. This section should list all the comments and reviews readers have given about your book. You can add a badge to your website asking readers for reviews.
5. Use a book review service.
There are a number of book review services available for a fee, although few specialize in Christian books. With these services, you offer to give away complimentary copies of your book in exchange for a review. Christian Small Publishers Association (CSPA) has such a service for our members. This service, BookCrash, allows CSPA members to offer their books to Christian bloggers in exchange for a review. If you have a Kindle book, you can use Kindle Book Review to receive reviews for your book. Additionally, you can host a giveaway on Goodreads.com for your book. Generally, Goodreads users who request your book then provide a review of your book on Goodreads.
When asking for a review, tell your book’s readers what a review will mean to you and what it means to others who are interested in the book’s subject matter. Be sincere in asking for a review. Remember to be thankful when you do receive a review—and always be kind, even if the review is not positive.
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