The Essential Guide to Promoting Nonfiction Books on GoodreadsPosted by Lisa Jablonsky on January 16, 2017
—Seth Morris, Assistant Director, Advertising and Promotions for the Crown Publishing Group at Penguin Random House
While fiction books often get the lion’s share of attention in the world of publishing, nonfiction books continue to win readers, both in terms of sales and in attention on Goodreads. Our 55 million members include a significant number of readers who love to read and review nonfiction books and this level of interest makes Goodreads the go-to book marketing platform for nonfiction publishers and authors. With Advertising, Giveaways, and Deals, our team can help you use our powerful book marketing features to build awareness, increase purchase intent, and reach precisely the readers interested in your category of nonfiction.
Give me some numbers. How much interest is there in nonfiction books on Goodreads?
In Q4 2016, more than a quarter (27%) of people who shelved a book on Goodreads, added a nonfiction book to their shelves. During those three months, they added an average of almost 1.8 million nonfiction books to their Want to Read shelves every month! This represents a healthy market of people who are interested in discovering their next nonfiction title.
Seeing this level of interest led the Goodreads Deals team to quickly expand into offering Nonfiction as a category in October last year. “We worked with publishers to test deals for popular nonfiction books such as The Power of Habit, I Am Malala, and Just Kids,” said Roshni Patel, Head of Digital Merchandising at Goodreads. “It was clear that there is an appetite for a wide range of nonfiction books with our members.”
Nonfiction covers a wide range of topics. What are the most popular categories of nonfiction books with Goodreads members?
We looked at the most popular nonfiction categories for our members. The top five are: History (25% of Goodreads members)
Of course, one of the strengths of Goodreads is that you can find a sizeable number of readers for just about any book category. Business, Religion, Spirituality, Travel, and more all have their fans here.
Cookbooks is a good example of a smaller nonfiction category on Goodreads which draws interest from fans. In fact, there’s a dedicated “Food & Cookbooks” category in the annual Goodreads Choice Awards due to the number of shelvings and reviews from our members. Seth Morris, Assistant Director, Advertising and Promotions for the Crown Publishing Group at Penguin Random House values Goodreads for the ability to reach people who love cookbooks. “We’ve recently been promoting Cooking with Jeffrey: A Barefoot Contessa Cookbook,” said Morris. “Ina Garten’s cookbooks have more than 123,000 ratings on Goodreads so it’s an excellent way to reach her fans, and the Goodreads reviews help draw in new readers.”
How should I move forward with promoting a nonfiction book on Goodreads? Goodreads has several products that you can leverage to promote your nonfiction book.
- To increase awareness and buzz of your book, you can try a Giveaway. We offer a variety of Ads on desktop and mobile that coupled with our expanded targeting options can help you pinpoint the members most interested in reading nonfiction.
- If you are a book publisher and have a marketing budget for your book, reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more info.
- If you are a book publisher who would like to run a price promotion on your title, you can email email@example.com to learn more about our Deals program.
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