How to Use GoodReads to Promote Your Self Published Book
What is GoodReads?
GoodReads is a site and book database that allows readers to create customizable “bookshelves” (such as “My Favorite Books,” “Want to Read,” “Best Children’s Books,” etc) to keep track of their favorite books and reading lists. Site users can also review books and read others’ reviews, and will receive recommendations based on their interests.
How Can Authors Benefit from GoodReads?
GoodReads has an Author Program which is designed to help authors reach their readers — and it’s completely free!
GoodReads’ database is automatically populated with books on bookseller websites like Barnes & Noble and Amazon, but you can also manually add your own self published book. When you join GoodReads, you can link your account with a special Author profile and take advantage of all their services.
How to Promote Your Work
Giveaways are a great way to publicize your book. By listing advance reading copies for giveaway, your book is automatically entered on the giveaway page, which is viewed by many users on the site. Interested readers put their name on the list, and GoodReads uses an algorithm to determine which readers would enjoy the book, based on their reading preferences.
You get to decide how many books to give away, whether it’s 10 or 100! GoodReads will send you a mailing list and you are responsible for shipping the books. But note that at this point, they only accept physical copies and not ebooks.
If you do a giveaway, many potential readers will interact with your book. The average giveaway is viewed by thousands and receives 825 signups. 60% of those who receive an advance copy will write a review for the book!
Make a Group
Making a featured author group on the site allows you to host Q&A’s with your fans, to directly interact with your audience. The groups are promoted through the GoodReads website and have the potential to be spread virally. If your Q&A is particularly successful, you can even be featured in the GoodReads newsletter!
Advertise on GoodReads
With over 10 million members on GoodReads, an ad campaign has the potential to be seen by a large number of readers. The Self-Serving Advertising Platform is intended for authors who have less than $500 to spend on advertising per month, and is customizable for your needs.
You can target a relevant audience by making your ad appear only to those who are a fan of a specific genre, or to those who like authors like you. And if you combine the ad campaign with a giveaway, you can increase traffic to your book’s page by over 50%!