Every Wednesday Rachel and Melissa host a TwitterChat called Book Marketing Chat. (You can join on Wednesdays 9pm Eastern by searching for #bookmarketingchat).
You can also follow @BadRedheadMedia and @MelissaFlicks (and @RachelintheOC) for notifications on when the book marketing chat is, where the chats are stored online, and to keep an eye on the next topic each week.
Last Wednesday we chatted about reviews and how to go about getting them in an ethical, polite way instead of banging down the digital doors of book reviews, begging (or telling) them to review your title. (Begging and Telling are not the ways to go about it, FYI.)
The best way to go about it is to make sure the book reviewer does read your genre/sub-genre. Then make sure they are still open to taking on titles to review. Reviewers are people, people. Even if they can read at lightning speed, it doesn’t mean they can give a decent review if they don’t take the time to feel the book. There are book reviews who are months or years behind on reading and reviewing. They have lives and life happens, so don’t be crazed if they aren’t taking on new titles.
You want to write a polite email asking if they’d be interested in reviewing your title. Then you want to include your elevator pitch or a short synopsis giving them the background on the title. You want to include a copy of the book in a readable format that’s comfortable for the reviewer (everyone has different tastes). Don’t say “Please review my book about a woman who befriends a stray dog and falls in love when she meets its owner” and then include a buy link to your book (or any type of review request that includes a buy link to your book). Book reviewers are rarely paid. They love books, so they review them. Some make money off of ads, some are paid to do professional reviews, but most do them for free. Either way, be kind.
We also discussed Blog Tours. I love and hate blog tours. They are a great way to get the title, cover, blurb, excerpt and your name into the brains of readers. My issue is that I follow a lot of blogs. Reviewing blogs, writing blogs, erotica and romance author blogs. Lots of these blogs do blog tours. Lots of them do them on the same day – usually (most likely) the day before/of/after the title goes live online. I scroll through my wordpress reader and see the same graphics (banner, book cover), the same exact titles and hashtags, and the same details. They are using the same excerpt more often than not. I scroll passed each and every one, sometimes two or three right in a row.
The reader in me skips it all. The reader in me doesn’t want the same title shoved into my face over and over and over. If I see it once, I take note. If I see it twice I look a little deeper. If I see it half a dozen times, I never want to see it again. It’s kind of like the radio. Every station is playing the same damn song. You switch stations and find another song, only to have the popular song come on as soon as that one is over. (And unless you love that song, you come to hate the radio.)
I’ve never done a blog tour, but if I did, I would have one or two places do it a week before the book went live. Kind of like a headsup “hey, this will be available on this day” and then two days later, have another blog or two do it again, with a different banner, that has a different excerpt. And on the day of, one or two more blogs showing off a third set of graphics and sample. Now, obviously, this is my opinion, and not something I’ve ever experienced. I just know that when I see the same title and graphics, literally three or four times in a row in my reader, it’s crazy.