Book Sales Success Secret #8: How To Get More Book Reviews
Have you received positive feedback from people who have read your book and asked them to leave a positive review… only to get crickets in response? Maybe they even agree to do it, but the review never appears. What gives?
In Books Sales Success Secret #8, Coach Tam explains the real reason it’s so hard to get people to leave book reviews – and how to fix it. Don’t miss the accompanying free training AND template to help make the process super-easy and start getting book reviews now!
In this episode, you’ll also hear:
- The psychology-backed reason it’s so hard to get book reviews, with real-life examples
- A step-by-step walk-through of how to make it super easy for people to leave reviews
- A free template that you can use again and again to ask for book reviews
- Free accompanying training to help you get started receiving more reviews
Be sure to read all the way to the end for the links to the free template and training!
Real talk: you’re here because you want tips that help you increase sales. And this particular secret is something you’ve probably thought about a lot already – but you may be struggling with it. As a matter of fact, it’s something that most Christian authors struggle with. And honestly, it’s something that anyone who has a product or service really needs, but probably struggles to get.
What is it? It’s getting more book reviews. Book reviews are a powerful tool for selling books, because they create word-of-mouth buzz and convince skeptical buyers to take a chance on you, a brand-new author. And all of this can lead to increased sales and success for you as an up-and-coming author.
The challenge is that today’s market is very competitive. And when customers are making decisions, often it is the reviews that tip the scale. So focusing on getting as many positive reviews as you can may make all the difference – but that’s easier said than done.
Have you ever experienced how difficult it can be to get someone to actually leave a review? Maybe you’ve wondered, “Why is it so hard to get people to leave book reviews? I mean, they told me that they have been blessed by the book. All I need them to do is take a couple of steps on Amazon (or Kobo, or whatever your platform is), and then everyone will know what a blessing the book is.”
It just doesn’t always work the way we think it should. So let’s take a look behind the scenes: you’re about to get a sneak peek into the Get More Reviews Training. We’ll talk about why people don’t leave reviews – and it’s not what you think! – and tips on how to get more of them.
And the best part is that everything in this training is completely aboveboard. It’s 100% ethical. You’re not going to feel salesy or sleazy; instead, it’s all about making it easy for people to be successful in leaving a review for your book.
When you do that – and you do the work to make sure that you stay connected with that person and that they follow through – then you are going to see more reviews, which are going to attract more sales for your book.
Why Is it So Hard To Get Book Reviews?
So why is it so hard to get positive book reviews? It’s all rooted in psychology.
Pause and think about that. From your point of view, as an author, you’re probably thinking, “This person told me that they were blessed by my book. I asked them to do this little, itsy bitsy favor and just go on Amazon or Smashwords or wherever and just type a little review.” It sounds really simple, doesn’t it? They’ve already told you they’ve been blessed, so it seems like it should be a small, easy thing for them to leave a review.
Here’s the thing: It’s not that they don’t want to help you, or that their positive feedback wasn’t sincere. They really were blessed by your book. They really were impacted by your message. There’s a different reason they haven’t taken that step to leave a review, and it’s rooted in psychology.
Did you know that before we make even the smallest decision, there’s a three-step process we go through in our minds – questions we ask ourselves – often without even realizing that’s what we’re doing? These are the steps:
- The Interpret Stage: “What does this mean?”
- The Process Stage: “Will it lead to pain or pleasure?”
- The Reason Stage: “What should I do about it?
Once we’re satisfied that we have come to a reasonable conclusion, then we take action. But, on the other hand, if we go through this three-step process and decide that this is going to lead to pain, for example, then we will literally talk ourselves out of taking action.
This means that the people who said they were blessed by your book but aren’t leaving book reviews haven’t come up with a reasonable conclusion that is positive. As a result, they’re not leaving reviews on your book.
Pleasure Over Pain
Coaching psychology tells us that our propensity to choose pleasure over pain is one of the strongest forces in our lives.
Think about it: Which do you choose on a daily basis? If you’re thinking about how difficult a task will be, or how much you’re not looking forward to it, or how another person might respond negatively to what you do or say, you’re not going to be very excited about that experience, are you? That’s because you’ve already decided in your mind that the experience is equivalent to pain. And when we as humans have the option to avoid pain, we are going to take it.
That’s one of the reasons jobs like fitness instructor and personal trainer exist – because if we were left to our own devices, it would be really easy to just decide we don’t want to work out today. Similarly, if you’re trying to quit a bad habit like smoking or drinking, having an accountability partner is really important, because we’re more likely to give into the pleasure of smoking or drinking than to endure the pain of abstaining.
In our daily lives, without intervention, we will almost always choose pleasure. Or, in other words, we will almost always choose to avoid pain – even if the immediate decision will result in pain long-term.
Here’s an example. You know in your heart that you need to work on the marketing for your book. But if, in your mind, marketing is painful, if it’s something that you don’t enjoy doing and that you dread, very likely you put off doing it as long as possible. In the back of your mind, you know that if you’re not putting our message out there, the chances of being able to impact people are very, very small. And you do really want to impact people, but you really, really hate marketing. Thus, the dilemma.
How about another example? Let’s say Susan is trying to develop a healthier lifestyle, so she’s working on her eating habits. Now, it’s six o’clock, and she just got off work. And on the drive home, Susan remembers that she never made it to the grocery store over the weekend. There’s very little food in the refrigerator, and what she does have doesn’t go together – and she doesn’t want any of it anyway. She doesn’t have her grocery list with her, and she can’t remember everything on her new meal plan.
So what does Susan do? Susan goes through that three-step process, and she decides she needs to go home first, get her list, and come back out. Then she goes into the process stage, and she’s thinking to herself, “Okay, I’m at exit XYZ. It’s gonna take me another 20 minutes to get home. Then I’m going to need to find my meal plan list. It’ll be about 6:45 by the time I get to the store. Oh man, best case, it’s going to be like 7:30 before I get back home, and I won’t have even eaten yet!”
So how does Susan categorize this? She decides that this is a painful process. So then she moves to the next stage: “What should I do about it?” Now, just as Susan is starting the reasoning process, she sees her favorite fast food restaurant coming up on the right, and she gets an idea. She says, “You know what, I’m going to go ahead and grab a bite. I’m going to pull into Chick fil A, and I’ll go shopping later.”
Time to be honest: Have you done this? Even if it’s not about sticking to healthy eating habits, most of us have. We decide it will be too hard or painful to do what we know we should do in the moment, and we tell ourselves, “I’ll start tomorrow instead.”
Make it Easy
So where is the pain for that person you asked to leave a review? Well, keep in mind that you, the author, understand how a review benefits you. But the person who has been asked to write that review may feel overwhelmed and anxious. They feel obligated to do it, but they don’t know what to say, and they may even worry about saying the wrong thing and disappointing you.
Think about your own writing – it’s work, isn’t it? It takes effort and time, and sometimes it’s downright painful. And you love to write! But that person you asked to review your book may not like writing at all. Or even if they do, they probably don’t write book reviews on a regular basis, so it will naturally feel uncomfortable for them to do. It’s very easy for them to tell themselves that other people will leave reviews and that you don’t need their help to succeed.
Ultimately, they don’t have a compelling incentive to do it. And let’s be honest, we are all more likely to do something when there is an incentive. So when you ask someone to leave a review for your book, they’re going to be asking, “What’s in it for me?”
In this situation, you’ve got to flip the script and remove the pain. You’ve got to give them a compelling, heart-centered reason that is not just about you and how much you would benefit. Then you have to help them figure out what to say and make it easy for them to follow through.
It’s all about reframing your ask. Instead of making it about you, make it about helping others who are in the same place that that person is in. You want them to remember the problem they had before, and think about how they don’t want others to struggle in the same way, so they will want to be a part of the solution.
Then, give them a starter review, based on the feedback they already shared with you, that they can edit. That way they aren’t stuck staring at a blank screen trying to figure out what to say. And finally, give them a direct link and instructions to submit the review.
Yes, that means you’ll have to do extra work. But think about the value of that positive review. You can talk about your book or your program all day long, but it’s going to hit people differently when complete strangers talk about how good your book or your program is. We are all more inclined to believe someone who is impartial and objective than the person who created the product or the service.
Just imagine if you were to get 10, 20, or 30 more book reviews than you have right now, and they were all positive, glowing reviews. What would that do for your book? How would that change your life?
Remember, you’re already encountering people who have been blessed by your book. All you need to do is make it easy for them to take that next step.
Example Template: Use This To Get More Book Reviews!
If you feel a little overwhelmed by all that, don’t worry – we’ll walk through an example to show you exactly what to do and say to get more book reviews. And you can also go into a portal we’ve set up just for members of this community to get a template that you can literally copy and paste and send out any time someone says they’ve been blessed by your book.
Here’s how it works. Say someone reaches out to you with positive feedback about how your book impacted them. You’ll respond with something like this:
“Hey, [first name], thank you so much for the feedback on the book! It really means a lot. Since you enjoyed the book so much, would you be willing to take a few minutes and copy and paste what you shared with me on [insert the platform you want them to use]? It would help others who are feeling [stuck, overwhelmed, lonely, etc.] make a decision about getting the book. It’s all about helping people [insert the benefit of your book or your program here].”
Let’s break that down:
- Thank them for their feedback.
- Explain that it won’t take much time (“Would you be willing to take a few minutes…?”)
- Make it sound really simple – because it is! They just have to copy and paste what they’ve already shared.
- Explain how they’ll be helping other people who are just like them.
“I tried to capture what you shared with me to make it easy. Feel free to tweak it.”
This tells them they don’t have to say exactly what you capture, which relieves some pressure if they want to edit the wording a little.
Then finish with:
“And I have attached step-by-step instructions on how to share the review. Thanks so much!”
And then you drop the sample review below.
Now, think about this from the receiver’s point of view. Doesn’t this feel much more doable than just being asked to do a review with no direction? They don’t have to worry about how long to make the review, where to post it, or what steps they need to take. You’re taking care of everything for them, and they even have step-by-step instructions and a link.
To reduce your own pain level, all you have to do is put the template in a document one time. Once you’ve gotten the instructions, you never have to do it again – you’ll just keep sending the same instructions over and over and over again. And it’ll be worth it, because the reward of all those book reviews is going to help your sales improve.
More Book Reviews Leads to More Sales
Remember: reviews have a huge impact on sales. People are much more likely to buy your book if they see that others have enjoyed it. And people are much more likely to leave reviews when you make it as easy as possible for them to do so.
Ready to start getting more reviews? You can get all the tools and resources you need in the free training inside the Christian Authors Network Community. Also be sure to create your free account in the Impact & Income Accelerator, where you can get the template to get started getting more book reviews immediately.
It’s all found in the Christian Authors Network, where we’re there to help you get your message to the masses.
My name is Tamara “Coach Tam” Jackson and I am a published author, Facebook© Certified Digital Marketer, host of the Top 100 Publishing Secrets podcast, and founder of The Christian Authors Network (C.A.N.) Facebook© community. I specialize in helping mission-driven authors, coaches, and entrepreneurs increase their exposure, impact, and income through strategic self-publishing and digital media appearances. Just say yes and we will work together to attract a tribe of loyal followers that 1) “get you”, 2) love what you do, and 3) are happy to invest in your book, business, cause, or movement. Plus, we will accomplish all of this without fake, salesy, sleazy, or manipulative tactics. Yes you CAN write, publish, and profit in a way that honors God; join the community today at https://christianauthors.net/fbgroup.
Check out the full training in the Christian Authors Network community: https://265point.com/getmorebookreviews
Join the Impact & Income Accelerator where you will receive a template that you can use to get started with getting more book reviews immediately. Go to https://265point.com/impactandincome now and sign up for your free account!
Download the Free Christian Author Marketing EBook: https://265point.com/secretsbook1
Get Booked as a Guest Speaker for Free: http://christianauthors.net
Follow Tam on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TamaraJacksonTransformationExpert/
Interact with Tam on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/fitnesstamara265/
Learn more about 265 Point: https://www.265point.com