When I suggest to Amazon authors that they seek reviews, the biggest objection I hear is, “But the more reviews I get, the greater the chances that I’ll get negative reviews.” Understandably, negative reviews are scary. But if you write a good book that either helps people or entertains them (or both) then two things will happen…
1. The positive reviews will greatly outnumber the negative reviews, thereby ‘negating’ the negatives.
2. The negative reviews can actually help sales.
For one thing, if you have negative reviews then your positive reviews become much more believable. Have you ever landed on a product with 400 positive reviews and NO negatives? Pretty hard to believe those are all real reviews, isn’t it?
And for another thing, ‘an enemy of my enemy is my friend’ Meaning, some negative reviews, when read by the right prospects, will actually convince prospects to purchase your book.
Here’s an example: Someone from political party ‘A’ writes a book. A member of political party ‘B’ writes a bad review, citing things in the book they didn’t like. But those things appeal to the prospect (who happens to be a part of Party ‘A’) and this is enough to nudge them into buying the book.
In other words, if you’ve written a good book then DON’T worry about negative reviews. On the other hand, if your book stinks then you might want to pull the book, rewrite it and relaunch it under a different title.
Lastly, why do you want more reviews of your Kindle books? Two words – more sales. The more reviews you have, the more popular your book looks, the more sales you will get. Plus, reviews are some of the best kind of social proof you can get.
Here then, are 8 ways to get more reviews of your Kindle books
– Write a good book. Seriously. If you write junk, your readers will be inspired to tell the world in reviews. But if you write a great book, again some of them will be inspired to tell the world in reviews.
Tiss: Practice makes perfect, so write a lot and you’ll get better and better. Add your own voice and personality – this makes it far more interesting to the reader. Get someone to edit and proofread the book for you.
– Write a short book. Most people finish reading a book before they write a review. Thus, if you have an 80,000 word book versus a 10,000 word book, all else being equal the 10,000 word book will get more reviews. Of course if you’re writing fiction, you might have to make it long since it’s expected.
Tip: If you already have an 80,000 word manuscript, break it into 4 or even 8 smaller books and charge less per book. Then cross promote your books for more sales.
– Ask for a review. Okay, this is really basic but most authors still don’t do it. At the end of your book, ask your reader to help you out and write a review. Remind them that they got the book at a great price, and if it helped them or entertained them, they can return the favor and really help you out with a review.
Tips: Let them know it will only take them a couple of minutes to do it. Provide the link where they can leave the review.
– Build a following. If you don’t already have one, build a list. Then when you put out a new Kindle book, ask them to review it.
Tips: Give your book away for free to your list and ask them to review it. OR give your book away for free to strangers on Amazon and ask them to sign onto your list – then ask them to review it. Either way, once you’ve got some great reviews, stop giving your book away for free and start charging for it.
– Use an email signature. If you have a separate email account just to answer questions about your book, then use a signature to ask for reviews. People will write to you with questions about your topic. When you write back, it’s the perfect time to ask for a review in your email signature. Be sure to give the link, too. And even if you don’t have a separate email account, you can still copy and paste a request each time you answer an email from your book’s readers.
Tip: When someone writes just to praise you and your book, ask them in your reply email to post what they wrote to you as a review. Be sure to give them the link to make it as simple as possible. When they do post it, THANK them.
– Give your book away for free. Strange but true, the way Amazon’s algorithm works you can get a real boost to sales after giving your book away for free for 5 days. Plus you can get a lot of good reviews when you give your book away, which will also boost sales.
– Run a countdown deal. This is the new ‘free’ and can have the same boost to sales as giving your book away. Again the added downloads will boost you in Amazon’s search results, plus you should be getting added reviews as well, which will also help sales.
Use social media. Post reviews of your book on your social media accounts to promote your book. This will get eyeballs on your books and usually sales, too. With more sales you can ask for more reviews.
Tip: When you have a loyal following, post a negative review now and then to social media to get your fans riled up. Your fans will go to Amazon to vote the review ‘not helpful,’ and often times they’ll even post a new review themselves.
One more reason to increase your reviews – publishing deals. If you get two or more books to each garner several hundred reviews, you might have a chance at getting a lucrative publishing offer.
If you do, think hard before you sign. Often times you can make more money by self-publishing than you can by going through a publishing house. But if they’re offering a large sum up front and a great marketing plan for your new book – then you might want to take it.