“Please leave a review on Amazon and Goodreads!”
Authors often ask readers to leave reviews, especially new authors. But it’s not for the reasons some people might think. It has less to do with ego and more to do with receiving honest feedback, marketing opportunities and attracting new readers.
Publishing a book is an exciting and nerve-wracking experience. There’s the joy of “I did it!” Which is quickly followed by “Oh my God! People are going to read my book!” And we all know how cruel the Internet can be. Certainly, every author receives negative reviews. Go look at some of your favorite books or current best-sellers. There are rave reviews and soul-crushing reviews. Because that’s reality – not everyone is going to like everything. However, if you keep receiving the same feedback from readers, it could be helpful with your next book or may even require you to consider making revisions. I can assure you, nothing will burn like your first one-star review. Mine came from a reader that was upset there were so many chapters about slavery… in a book about the trans-Atlantic slave trade. I was livid! I wanted to do the very thing authors should not do – I wanted to respond. My fingertips were literally itching! Thankfully, Goodreads has mechanisms to prevent such disasters (there were several “we don’t advise this” and “are you sure you want to do this” warnings). Instead, I reached out to another seasoned author. She assured me – negative reviews are a part of the writer’s life. And often, they help you more than hurt you.
What many readers may not know is that reviews are often tied to marketing opportunities for authors. And not just favorable reviews – the number of reviews help too. This is particularly true for ebook subscription marketing opportunities as well as Amazon book pairings. One of the reasons The Truth About Awiti has done well is because of the number of reviews that the book has received. As a new author, I was able to receive a coveted marketing opportunity on BookBub. That opportunity introduced my novel to an entirely new audience (and the novel received more reviews!)
Attracting New Readers
Another benefit of leaving a review for an author is that reviews help attract new readers. Don’t you enjoy reading book reviews before making a purchase? If you really enjoyed reading a book, one of the most helpful things you can do is leave a review on Goodreads and the site where you purchased the book, such as Amazon, B&N, or even your favorite indie bookstore. Your review just might be the one that influences readers to purchase the book.
The next time you read a book, do the author a favor and leave a review because they help us more than you know!