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message 1: by Angel (new)

Angel | 216 comments Continue to do what you are doing and don't let anyone tell you any different.

message 2: by Iffix (new)

Iffix Santaph | 324 comments I'm not sure it's worth it. My gut tells me if anyone finds out you've paid a reviewer for a review, even if the review is positive, it won't be listened to. (And what if it wasn't?)

I am not certain how good reviews pop up on the backs of books by traditional publishers. This is the only reason I would consider paying for a review, so I could put it in the blurb. My gut also tells me that these are probably paid reviews (by the publisher rather than the writer, but it makes no difference).

When I see that a reviewer from the Arizona Sun Times liked the same book I did, it doesn't make a lick of difference to me. I read a book by an author because their story is compelling or because they've already convinced me with a story that was compelling. Eventually, a compelling story in short form on the blurb will reward you more than any reviewer's praise. (Not that T-Pubs don't still use the praise to market their writers.)

I'm probably not telling you more than you already know. Just a second opinion.

message 3: by Courtney (new)

Courtney Wells | 138 comments Plenty of bloggers/reviewers on GR have sizeable followings and are only asking for a free copy. It might mean a waiting list or pass but it's visibility :)

message 4: by Angel (last edited Apr 23, 2015 06:16PM) (new)

Angel | 216 comments Try doing interviews by other bloggers. Doing interviews can get your book out there more to readers and reviewers.

message 5: by Iffix (last edited Apr 23, 2015 06:19PM) (new)

Iffix Santaph | 324 comments A.L. You and I are of the same mindset about this Twitter craze. I don't see the value. I'm sure if I was Kim Kardashian or Paul Heyman I would be noticed on Twitter. But do I really want the same publicity as these two? I sincerely doubt it.

My closest friends know I've published a book. My family understands why I'm hesitant to tell the rest of my friends and they respect me for it. I sincerely hope your family will too. And remember, the best thing you can do for your craft, as any author would tell you, is more craft, not a bunch of social media hype.

message 6: by Dianne (new)

Dianne Bunnell | 61 comments I think the ad campaigns will get your book noticed by lots of people - without any NY review. There's a whole list of places you can promote your book in one of these threads; some you pay for (a reasonable amount) and some are free. Moderator, can you post the list again?

What kind of ad campaign are you running on Amazon?

message 7: by Sarah (new)

Sarah Bierle (gazette665) | 10 comments I totally relate to your question about reviews. I've been working on getting reviews before my book is published...but how do you do galley copies? Ugh, that's a whole different topic. ;)

Anyway, I completely agree with the others' advice. Don't pay for a review. Definitely reach out to bloggers. I found this huge master list; check it out.

Also, is your book fiction or non-fiction? Can you find a group that would be interested in your topic or genre? Perhaps they would consider doing a review in exchange for one review copy. This has worked well for me.

And one more thing - I found the book Platform Get Noticed in a Noisy World by Michael Hyatt to be an incredible resource. I'm not a fan of Twitter and have decided to use Facebook in my platform, but Hyatt prefers Twitter and explains it well.

Best of luck! Enjoy the adventure. ;)

message 8: by Dianne (new)

Dianne Bunnell | 61 comments Here's the link for the promotional sites:

I used many of these sites (some free and some reasonable fees) when I released my book earlier in the month and my book went to #1 and #2 on Amazon's free kindle memoirs - talk about thrilling for a first-time indie author. Woo hoo!

Good of luck, A.L.

message 9: by Christina (new)

Christina McMullen (cmcmullen) I know plenty of people who have paid for a review and I have yet to read a paid review that actually says anything about a book. Mostly they are a single paragraph that simply summarizes the plot. The whole point of paying seems to be to say, "So & so reviewed my book, which means it has their stamp of approval." If you're looking for that approval, by all means, pay, but if you are looking for book visibility and sales, your money is better spent elsewhere.

message 10: by Riley, Viking Extraordinaire (new)

Riley Amos Westbrook (sonshinegreene) | 1510 comments Mod
Amazon ads, google ads, and facebook ads, basically any social media network.

message 11: by Owen (new)

Owen O'Neill (owen_r_oneill) | 1509 comments First, how many books are you planning to write? That has a big effect on the marketing strategy. Very few single-book author will succeed under any circumstances, so spending money to promote a book, if it's the only book you plan to write, is not likely to yield a good return.

Next, a month is too soon to decide anything -- it's basically an eye blink in the indie market.

As well explained by Micah elsewhere here (and others have made similar points), the economics of indie publishing are completely different than traditional publishing. What you are hearing is the "big splash" blockbuster model, which almost never works for anyone. It is driven by the compressed timescales of traditional publishing, which worries about things like shelf-inches and quick returns, etc. It was never designed for the benefit of authors, but publisher who wants to cycle titles quickly to find those that give the best return for the least investment.

Indie publishing is a long game. The conventional wisdom I endorse is: don't spend money until you have your 3rd or 4th book out there. Until then, use word-of-mouth and whatever avenues you like to get the word out. Build your readership and do not obsess over reviews and sales. (Reviews don’t really sell books very well anyway.) Research your genre to set your expectations -- too few authors do this, and get all stressed out because they have unrealistic ideas about how things work. But above all, no matter what happens early on, remember this is a long game. You are much better off with your 4th book taking off then your first -- it will be selling four books then, not just one.

So if you are in this for the long haul, keep doing what you are doing. And try not to listen to “helpful” people who haven't yet "shed blood" in the indie publishing biz.

message 12: by B.E. (new)

B.E. (besanderson) Another book that might help is Let's Get Visible by David Gaughran. He has a lot of marketing ideas for self-published authors in there. I'm in the same boat you are - with only my first book out and minimal sales - but I'm doing what I can and working on getting the next book out there (next month, barring flood or armageddon). Everything I've heard and read says - regardless of what other marketing you do - the more books you have out there, the better all their sales will be.

Of course, it's early yet. Ask me in December after I have other books out, and I might not be as positive.

Good luck!

message 13: by Owen (new)

Owen O'Neill (owen_r_oneill) | 1509 comments A.L. wrote: " I wish I did not have to tweet but from what I have read/researched this is the best way to market your book...."

Interested to know how that works for you. Last year, we tried a book promotion service with (claimed) 25K+ followers, and got zero response. We haven't had any luck with our Amazon ad program either. (I think we must be doing that wrong -- we get few impressions and no clicks.)

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