Reviews are important for self-published authors as they offer proof for potential customers that they will get their money’s worth. “Reader recommendations – in the form of reviews – [tell people] that a particular title is high quality and on-genre.”
Many self-published authors find it challenging to find reviewers. However, putting in the effort and remaining increases your book’s chance of being reviewed. Here are some tips to consider:
Reach out to book reviewers and introduce yourself and your book. Use a personalized cover letter that includes a book blurb. Here is a sample template you can use:
Dear [book blogger’s name],
I hope this letter finds you well. My name is [your name], and I am contacting you because I recently published a book I believe you would find interesting.
The book, titled [your book’s title] is a/an [your book’s genre] novel.
[1-2 paragraphs describing your book, similar to the back cover and/or sales copy blurb.]
I would be thrilled to have your expert opinion on it.
I came across your blog on the [website title where you found the blogger’s information] website, and I would be honoured if you would consider reviewing this book.
I am happy to provide you with a free digital copy of the book for your review. Please let me know which file type you prefer. I understand that you likely receive a large number of review requests, and I can wait until you are available. Additionally, I would be happy to participate in an author interview or provide any other information you might require.
Thank you for your time and consideration, and I look forward to hearing back from you.
1. Blogger list websites
You can find several reviewers for free at The Book Blogger List and similar websites. These are sites on which bloggers post their contact information, looking for books to review. There are so many more authors than reviewers, so you will likely have to wait. Reading a book takes time, and there are so many more authors than reviewers.
2. Connect on social media
Use social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to promote your book and connect with book reviewers and bloggers. You can offer a free eCopy of your book in exchange for a review.
3. Online communities
Join online communities of self-published authors and book reviewers like GoodReads. You can connect with other authors and reviewer in online communities that may be interested in reviewing your book.
4. Advanced reader copies
Offer advanced reader copies (ARCs) of your books to reviewers for free for bloggers to read and review your book before it’s officially released. Providing ARCs is a great way to get copy and quotes for ads in the queue, ready for when your book is published.
5. Purchase a review
Some websites and blogs review self-published books for a fee. Keep in mind that Amazon might not approve paid reviews, but they are a way to get a quote from a reputable source for marketing campaigns.
6. Search for bloggers on your own
You can also contact book bloggers directly. Most reviewers maintain blogs and websites to showcase their work. Britbear Book Reviews (maintained by the owner of EMSA Publishing) is one such site. Submitting your book does not guarantee your book will be reviewed. However, the Britbear site does not post anything under three stars.
Culling reviews is time consuming but rewarding
Getting your book reviewed takes time, from composing a query letter, emailing it, receiving a response, and waiting for your book to be read and edited, but reaching out to reviewers is a great place to start. The key is to be persistent and patient and build relationships with reviewers.