We wanted to get to know Brian Schwartz (NAIWE’s Self-Publishing Expert) better, so last month we sat down with him. Here are some thoughts he shared with us.
What makes a good review?
A good review helps target the book for the right reader while steering the wrong reader away. I often tell authors “The way you get a good review is by putting your book in the hands of the right reader. Bad reviews are the result of putting it into the hands of the wrong reader.” If your reviewer is open to advice, provide them with keywords you know others are likely to use in a search since reviews are also indexed by search engines. An ideal review is 1–2 paragraphs and mentions the main reason why they read the book and what they got out of it. People are skeptical that a review is legit when the review is only 1–2 sentences.
Can a book ever have too many reviews?
Never! Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents has over 31,000 ratings on Amazon with an average of 4.8/5 stars.
Can you sensor or pick and choose reviews?
No, and you should never engage with a reviewer. In one instance, I did reach out to a 1-star reviewer and offered to compensate her for her time because the author was distraught. Some companies who sell products on Amazon may offer a bad reviewer a full refund if they are willing to take down their review. But this is not advisable. I regret doing it myself as it tarnishes the integrity of the entire system and you are setting yourself up for scammers who just want free products. The truth is that the more people you ask, the more likely you will get a bad review. But a few bad reviews can raise the legitimacy of the others and if the bad review steers the wrong reader away from your book, then it’s actually done you (and the reader) a service. I tell authors that for every one bad review, they should try to offset it with two positive ones.
What’s the one thing you can do each day to grow your sales? Ask for a review. In this webinar, Brian will empower you to build the essential foundation behind any successful book: a strategy to continually ask for reviews. Before you spend a dime on advertising, your book must have reviews. While Amazon reviews get all the attention, there are many other ways you can leverage reviews elsewhere.
Key takeaways you can expect from attending this webinar:
• The indicators that Amazon uses to remove reviews
• The importance of “vanilla urls” when pointing to Amazon
• The 3 key elements of an effective review
• Using Amazon reviews in your marketing materials
• How many reviews you need
• When a bad review can be good
• How to avoid getting banned by Goodreads
• What a successful reviewer outreach, tracking & follow-up system looks like
• How to find over 100 potential reviewers in your own network.
After helping hundreds of authors over the past 10+ years, Brian has seen firsthand what works and what doesn’t. How do you get a good review for your book? You put your book in the hands of the right reader. Amazon.com began with a single line of code. Similarly, the success of any title began with a single review.
You can join in this conversation on July 28, at 6:30 pm eastern, when NAIWE will host a discussion on book reviews. The cost for NAIWE members is only $10! Non-members can join for $30. Register today!