You may be wondering, “How can I get my book reviewed?” Different types of book reviews are available to help authors sell more books: unpaid traditional book reviews and paid online book reviews. Each has its own unique pros and cons. Both are effective tools for different reasons.
How Can I Get My Book Reviewed? [Unpaid Traditional Book Reviews]
Make sure to send out a few complimentary copies of your book to various relevant book reviewers in your area. This is a common custom among trade publishers that really should be adopted by self-publishing authors. Why? Because it is a great way to generate some extra publicity for your book.
The upside is that these reviews are free of charge in the sense that your only cost is the copy of your book and the postage to send it; however, the downside is that you’re not guaranteed a review after sending it. It’s at the discretion of the reviewer.
Two types of unpaid traditional book reviews are available: one is the review that you send out ahead of time, known as an advance reading copy (ARC), to stir up interest in the book before publication; the other is a published review copy of the actual, final edited version of your book.
Advance Reading Copies (ARCs)
These unfinished review copies can be printed and mailed out as hard copy galleys or emailed as .PDF files. It is important to ensure they are stamped with the words “Advance Reading Copy (ARC)” on the front cover, and possibly also on every few pages of the interior, to ensure that the reviewer understands the copy is unedited so he or she takes that into account.
Published Review Copies
When sending a final published review copy to an editor, whether mailed as a hard copy or emailed as a .PDF, make sure to stamp “Review Copy” on the front cover of the book so it cannot be resold for profit. This also ensures that it will get to the right person at the newspaper or magazine to which you’re sending it for review.
A book review written by a respected reviewer within the literary community can do wonders to help boost book sales. It works in much the same way as other forms of publicity do. When shared via social media, a prize endorsement such as this can catch on as quickly as wildfire. It’s definitely worth the cost of a complimentary book or two.
How Can I Get My Book Reviewed? [Paid Online Book Reviews]
Paid online book reviews are a fantastic advertising tool for authors. They can aid you in your efforts to direct traffic to the storefront where your book is currently sold. As well, they can provide you with relevant content that can be shared via social media.
The upside to these types of reviews is that whereas you’re not guaranteed a review when you send a book to a traditional book reviewer, you are guaranteed a review when you pay for one from a non-traditional book reviewer. The downside is that you must pay for it.
When completed by a reputable organization, these paid reviews are still unbiased reviews—which may be good or bad. Once the review is complete, you are given an opportunity to decline or approve it to be published online. If you decline it, you won’t get your money back; it simply won’t be shared publicly at your request. But if you approve it, it might be posted to that reviewer’s high-traffic website. Or, it could be posted to your book online.
A complimentary paid book review can boost your sales in much the same way a traditional review can. This can also improve your blog’s SEO. It is definitely worth the investment. To find links to the websites of various reviewers who may accept your book for review, click here and here and here.
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