Ask Jenny: Gaining Book Reviews

Earlier this month, I started a brand new series on my blog called ‘Ask Jenny’, whereby I try and offer some sound advice to anyone who needs it about a problem they might have. Like the agony aunt columns in Women’s magazines, basically. But hopefully better and less generic. My first post in this series got a great response and I was super chuffed about it and many people thought it was a good idea; so like a good little micro-influencer, I took their advice and have decided to continue the series – for a while at least. Until I or my readers get bored.

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In my first post, we were discussing friendships and today, we’re talking about reviewing books. No names will be published in any of these posts, despite the topic in question, just to protect the privacy of the asker. But hopefully, more than one person can take something from the answers (and comments) to the question. Ready?

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Question: How do I get people to review my books? I do fairly well on sales but few people leave reviews.

From a book blogger’s point of view, the best way to get reviews would be to contact book bloggers and ask for them. You may have already done this and if so, then great. But if not then I would definitely encourage it. Book bloggers are just wonderful people and as long as they are accepting reviews at that particular time and review your genre then the worst they can say is no.

I would always make sure you ask book bloggers who have/will review your book on their blog to pop their reviews on Amazon or Goodreads as well. It’s quite easy to forget; I definitely have forgotten to do it a few times until the author has reminded me!

If you’re looking to just generally up your amount of reviews then I would also suggest running a blog tour is another great way to do that. Obviously this consists again of asking blogger’s to review your book but the prolonged period of exposure for your book during the blog tour may increase sales and encourage more reviews. You can run a blog tour yourself or get a company to do a professional tour for you. This means the hard work is out of your hands.

I can’t imagine the frustration an author must get when they see the sales numbers increase but the amount of reviews stay the same because reviews are important but obviously not everyone who is buying your book is aiming to leave a review at all. They just want a fab book to read.

I would also maybe suggest that if you find yourself speaking to anyone who has bought your book (who isn’t a book blogger), for example they tweet you, maybe ask them if they could leave just a 1 or 2 line review on Amazon when they’ve finished because lots of non-bookish people don’t have the time to write extensive reviews of all the books they read, which may be what’s putting them off reviewing at all because they think that’s what they need to do. 1 or 2 lines is better than 0 lines!

Are you an author or a book blogger with any extra advice for this question? Anything I’ve missed? What are your magical techniques for getting more reviews for your book? Do leave a comment and share your own advice because we would both love to hear it!

Need some advice and want your question featured in my ‘Ask Jenny’ series? Drop me an email at: jenny.in.neverland@hotmail.co.uk! No names will be published in the blog post. Happy to accept questions from a variety of topics such as: blogging, business, friendship, relationships, mental health and more.

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17 thoughts on “Ask Jenny: Gaining Book Reviews

  1. This is great advice!! Just make sure you personalize reach out emails because I receive lots so the generic ones I typically ignore just as a way to prioritize.

  2. I’ve found once I’ve reviewed a book, I’m asked to continue reading the author’s work–they come directly to me because they have my email address. The general requests actually turn me off, too.
    I may not be the fastest gun in town, but I’m very thorough when I do a review. I believe I owe the author that. I also drop my blog link on at least 10 FB groups, trying to get as much exposure for the author as possible. I add the book review to GoodReads, Amazon, Librarything and Barnes and Noble.

      • I’ll have to get the groups together. Depending on what I review, I post there. Librarything.com is a little bit like netgalley where you can win a giveaway and place your reviews. It’s not as developed as some of the others, but I like to encourage growth. I’ll get that set of FB pages together for you, give me about a week. I’ve 3 books which need to be read and reviewed by the 28th. Yikes!

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