Reading Time: 2 minutes
This recap of “The Surprising Ways Book Reviews Can Help Launch Your Success” from the Book Marketing Tips & Author Success podcast is one of several episodes where we talk about how valuable book reviews are for sales, and for making you a better writer.
Be sure to download and listen to the show for all the details, recommendations, and considerations!
We’ve done several episodes about book reviews, how to generate them, and how to use blogger reviews and media, whether you are in the middle of a launch or not. These podcasts can be great refreshers. Check them out in the Resources and Downloads at the bottom of this page.
Book reviews obviously offer a lot of benefits. Digging into what consumers really want is ideally your goal for becoming the best writer you can be. While some reviewers’ feedback will be something you can’t do anything about, often there’ll be something you can use right away in your marketing strategies now or eventually down the road.
How to Use Reviews to Improve Your Book
Look for common themes in the reviews. Here’s an example: suppose many of your readers mention poor editing or that the book has flow issues or that the descriptions are too wordy, or not wordy enough–these are legitimate notes to remember when developing your next book. Then you might consider hiring an editor for a second pass, even on a book that’s already been established.
Clearly define what your book is about. You don’t want to confuse your readers so make sure your description is clear. Sometimes the book cover or the genre classification isn’t obvious and you can unknowingly lead your readers to think your book is about one thing, only for them to find out it’s really about something else. Are you really resonating with your target audience or did you miss the mark and lead people down the wrong path?
Read Reviews for Competitor’s Books. You’ll learn what aspects people really resonate with as well as what might be missing from the market or genre, and who knows? This could be your opportunity to be the author that fills that gap. Being aware of competition is the critical market research you need to do, rather than just reading reviews to just check them off your list.
Book Reviews: the Good, The Bad, and the Ugly
Not all the reviews are guaranteed to be positive but that’s normal, so brush it off and move on. While it’s hard, set your ego aside and categorize feedback as fixable or not fixable. Being objective is the only way you’re going to get the most of out your reviews.
You can even turn that negative review into a positive thing. Use constructive criticism (and for that matter positive responses too!) from your reviews to fuel ideas for other content. Take specific feedback from a review and work a response into your social media, on the book’s webpage, or your blog.
Use your book reviews, whether positive, negative, or somewhere in the middle, to your benefit. It will make you a better writer, maximizing all your book has to offer.
If you found this post helpful, please use the social buttons below the Resources and Free Downloads to share on Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn and tag me, or you can email this post to a friend or colleague!
Resources and Downloads
Podcast: Getting Reviews Is More Complex Than You Think
Podcast: Minisode: Dealing With Bad News
How to Work More Reviews into Your Book Marketing Plan
Reader Profile Brainstorm
Check out Jane Friedman’s site, she’s an excellent resource: www.janefriedman.com