How To Get Amazon Reviews for my new Book with Netgalley
One of the most frequently asked question towards book marketers is “How to get reviews for my book?”.
When we receive complaints as a marketeer that “my book doesn't sell”, what happens behind the curtain?
We first check the book's page and we see that it has zero (or close to zero) reviews. We know well it is certainly an issue, since on Amazon visitors may see the review count, it is just under the title. Why they wouldn't notice? And we know review count and general rating influences the conversion rate (sales/visitors) of the book. How likely a visitor will convert into a customer? In my book I wrote a lot of ideas about reviews and book maturity indicators. In this article, I would like to offer you a practical solution: Netgalley.
At the end of 2020 we partnered up with Books Go Social to offer you (authors) a solution to submit your book directly to Netgalley which is almost the best and white hat solution to get your book reviewed just after the release.
Amazon TOS is very strict in terms of reviews:
- You mustn't pay for reviews!
- You aren't allowed to do a reviews exchange!
It has been a long time since the publishing industry also took over the digital world. There are a lot of benefits and advantages when it comes to the digital distribution of books, and it’s just hard to miss it out. Not only readers benefit from this, but also, the publishers. It’s more convenient, easier to deliver, and can reach a wider set of audiences.
In Netgalley, they seek to create a place where book enthusiasts can gather and connect. The community consists of different kinds of people with different kinds of aims and it is impossible for you not to find a role that can fit your style. Whether you are an individual author or under a publishing company, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t enter this platform.
How does Netgalley work?
Netgalley is a popular platform that connects professional readers and publishers. Authors and publishers promote their work digitally and allow members to request access in return for reviews and feedback. They also offer audiobooks and you can discover thousands of new titles each day.
Just like any other professional platform, Netgalley is not free. There are five types of membership you can acquire if you decided to join the community:
- Media Professionals
Each has a certain role and publishers have different goals when working with each type. If you are an author, you can list your book on the platform with the appropriate package you will need to choose from. The primary package lasts for six months. In that certain period, members can request access to your book in return for feedback and this can help create a buzz in your work.
Who can list books on Netgalley?
Publishers and individual authors can list their books on the platform. Before entering the community, you will be directed to complete a contract first and choose which option best suits your interest. The most basic, the six-month book listing, is priced at $399, while the marketing+title listing is priced at $599
If you are a member of the IBPA, you can acquire discount benefits exclusively with your membership. For a three-month listing, it is priced at only $199, $349 for a six-month listing, and $499 with enhanced marketing features. IBPA partnership also offers discounts in programs for audiobooks and other additional promotional opportunities including Category Spotlight and Featured Placement.
As mentioned at the beginning of the article we partnered with Books Go Social in order to offer a discounted solution to get your book to Netgalley. Their discounted packages starts at $79 for one months listing (this option isn't available at Netgalley site), and because of our partnership you can get a 50% discount as self-publisher.
Use this coupon at checkoutOrder the service
Benefits of using Netgalley
Feedback and Reviews
It’s been known that reviews and feedback are one of the things a reader looks for before digging into the book. Good reviews are an indication that a reader’s time during the moment will be worthwhile while bad ones are signs that the book needs further development. It usually comes from the reviewer’s personal experience and insights with the literary.
Apart from this, critical reviews even give the author the points he/she might have missed while writing the book. It creates room for improvement. This way, the writer may know what the readers are looking for and what catches their attention. Sometimes, a good critique is what leads most authors into finding what is the essence of their work and why they want to share it with the world.
Also, feedback helps the book to get discovered by a larger audience. The more reviews you get for your book, the bigger the chance that it will reach more people.
Marketing Strategy to attract more readers
Some might think that giving away your work for free is just a waste of effort. In the book industry, it’s a must. If you are an individual author who wants to be discovered and reach wider viewers, feedback will help you reach your goal. As stated in the last point, it tells you the rights and wrongs you have done with your work and you can work this out before actually going into the publications. Netgalley helps you distribute your work with different types of readers that can contribute to building the one that will influence a lot of people.
If you are a known author, you probably don’t have a problem when it comes to generating sales for your book. Readers are most likely to be the ones waiting for your release. But, reviews can also make a great deal out of your literature. The brand, the cover, and the description are not enough to get every reader to decide to get a book.
If you want to stand out from the rest, you need something that will make your work more attractive and desirable for readers.
A great place to discover new books
Netgalley allows its members to get free books in return for reviews and feedback. This way, they can access books early before they were released to the public while helping the authors generate buzz and foundation with their works. Every year, nearly one million books are being published in the U.S. alone. If we’re going to include every book being published all around the world, it’s hard to keep up with that.
With this platform, readers can get a grasp of pieces of literature before they take over the limelight. With thousands of books becoming available each day, it’s impossible not to find one that will catch your attention. With several genres available to choose from, the next book that will be added to your favorites is just waiting to be found.
A place of numerous opportunities
Netgalley is not only a platform for readers, but it is also a great place for aspiring authors who want to show the world what they are capable of sharing and creating. Most authors started from scratch. No one is born with the privilege of being a famous writer. Just like them, you have to work hard if you want to reach a certain goal in your career in the book industry.
But, even if you have the talent and passion when it comes to creating a whole system out of books, it’s still important to create relationships within the community. With this platform, you can encounter a diversity of readers. There are journalists, librarians, bloggers, educators, publishers, and the list goes on. Connections might not always be the fastest way to acquire your target with your career, but you can learn a lot from different kinds of people with different kinds of insights and opinions.
How can I attract reviewers?
When you first list your book, it would be visible to every member in the ‘Recently Added’ section. You can also put in two genres to be more accessible for readers looking for specific topics. But, with numerous new titles being listed every day, you have to make sure that your book stands out. To attract reviewers, here are some of the things that you can do:
Make a Stellar Description
The description serves as a teaser of what the readers should expect from your book. If it has already caught their attention, the probability of them requesting access to the book is very high whether you are a known author or not.
Create an Attractive Cover
The design of the cover works differently for everyone. Some prefer a simpler facade, while some like funkier and more colorful ones. Either way, you have to think carefully about who your target audiences are and whether the cover will reflect what’s inside the book.
Build a Mailing List
With Netgalley providing you a community of diverse individuals, you must create a mailing list from among these people that you can send a copy of your new book whenever you release one. By building a connection with them, you can be assured that they will answer your request and provide you the feedback you need to reach more readers.
Reach out to Bloggers
Bloggers are also one of the primary members of this platform. They are active readers and continuously looking for books they can review and put into their platforms. If you know some with a wide range of audiences worldwide, you can reach out to them and ask if they can review your work in return for giving it to them for free. This way, both of you would benefit from the situation.
Use the Power of Social Media
Almost everybody in the world has a social media account, so why not use it to your advantage? It is a great place to promote your work and ask for reviews from reliable people. There are also communities across Facebook (specifically for book enthusiasts) you can join in. Other platforms such as Instagram, Twitter, and Tumblr also have a large number of users.
With the right approach and promotional techniques, you can generate enough numbers of reviews you need to create a buzz for your work.
Overall, being a writer is not easy. You need to work hard to come up with something spectacular, and the promotion is a whole other topic. People have different timelines and different moments to shine. If you want to succeed in this career, you have to be patient and wait for your time to come. Giving up amidst your progress can sabotage the great things waiting for you at the end.
Books are always a work in progress, even after you finish writing them. Some of the most famous books of all time didn’t get in the spot overnight. Don’t be afraid of failure, because failure means you don’t stop trying and you will eventually learn something from it along the way.