Goodreads Blog

Five Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your Goodreads Giveaways

Posted by Cynthia on January 15, 2018
Whether you have a book coming out in a few months, want to keep the momentum going on a frontlist book, or rekindle interest in an older title, Goodreads Giveaways can help drive discovery and reviews for your books with readers. Goodreads Giveaways have been used in all kinds of marketing campaigns, from breaking out a debut author to continuing the momentum and creating a runaway bestseller.

With our new Goodreads Giveaways program, we’ve added some top-requested marketing benefits to our program, and now have two new packages. And for the first time, Kindle Direct Publishing authors can run giveaways for Kindle ebooks-a feature previously only available to traditional publishers.

To help you get the most out of your giveaway, here are five tips:

1. Offer as many copies as you can in a giveaway.

The more books you give away, the more likely you’ll get reviews. You can offer up to 100 copies (either print book or Kindle ebook) in a Goodreads giveaway. With our Kindle Ebook Giveaways option, you no longer have to spend time and money mailing books to winners as Goodreads handles the distribution for you. (The cost of the Kindle ebooks are included in the giveaways listing price.) Another benefit is that winners immediately receive the book upon winning the giveaway, allowing them to start reading (and talking about) the book much sooner.

2. Run multiple giveaways in advance of publication.

To allow time for readers to read and review a book, many authors and publishers start running giveaways as early as six months in advance of publication. The earlier you start promoting your title, the more time you have to build up anticipation. Each giveaway also builds an audience for you on Goodreads as your book is automatically added to Want-to-Read shelves of readers who enter. When you run your next giveaway, Goodreads emails those readers letting them know, which reminds them again about your book.

3. Get the word out about your giveaway.

Share the link to your giveaway on your website, via your newsletter, and your social media accounts. Link to your giveaway at the end of any excerpts you create online. Just before the giveaway ends, promote the giveaway again so people don’t miss their chance to win.

4. Spend time crafting your giveaway description.

You have around 150 characters to hook people in. That’s the amount of copy shown for each giveaway on the page listing current giveaways. Think about the words that will prove irresistible to readers and drive them to click “view details” to learn more about your book. If this is your first giveaway, study the descriptions of similar books and see what piques your interest.

5. Complete your bio on Goodreads.

The first few lines of your bio get pulled onto the unique landing page for your giveaway, along with a “Follow Author” button to allow readers to stay up-to-date on your activity on Goodreads. We recommend making your bio personal and friendly, while still drawing attention to any previous success. For inspiration, see Adam Silvera, Nicola Yoon, and Michael Finkel.

Giveaways on Goodreads are a popular and easy way to build awareness and drive discovery for your book. Treat a giveaway on Goodreads with the same amount of thoughtfulness as any type of advertising campaign, and start seeing the benefits. Click here to learn more about how Goodreads Giveaways helps you leverage the power of word of mouth.

Goodreads Giveaways are a powerful marketing tool to build awareness and drive Want to Read shelvings for a book. Find out how you can get started with Goodreads Giveaways here.

Next: Marketing Advice from Self-Publishing Success Intisar Khanani

You might also like: Five Things Writers Need to Know Before Publishing Their First Book

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