AuthorsGetLit

AuthorsGetLit: 5 tips for getting a blogger to review your book.

AuthorsGetLit is a new series on This is Lit that will focus on tips for authors and publishers about interacting with bloggers, soliciting book reviews, and more.

Authors and publishers usually reach out to bloggers to get them to review their books. In addition to press releases and magazine reviews, one of the best ways to promote a book is to get a blogger to review it.

If you are an indie author wondering how exactly you can reach out to a blogger, look no further! Here are 5 tips to get the blogger to say yes to the book.

1. Be personal.

As a blogger, there is nothing more off-putting than a request that looks like it’s been bulk emailed to a lot of people. Some authors and publishers don’t even take the time to enter the blogger’s name into the email. Try to be a little more personal when you contact bloggers. Be human and understand that on the other side, there’s a real live human who needs to accept your book for review consideration.

2. Read the review policy first.

You’ve discovered a blog through a blogger database and now you’re itching to shoot out an email. Should you go ahead and email them without visiting their blog? NO. Visit their blog, and more importantly, check out their review policy. Find out if your book fits into their list of accepted genres. If it doesn’t, you’ll only be wasting both yours and the blogger’s time by emailing them.

3. Write your request in a way that piques the blogger’s interest.

To do this, you need to do point 2 first. Find out what the blogger’s interests are and if your book fits the bill, tell them! I was recently contacted about a noir mystery novel, but the author didn’t focus on that in his request email. My bio says I enjoy self-deprecating jokes. Turns out his book is full of it! So that’s what he started the request email with. After introducing the book, he said “The book is full of self-deprecation, so I suspect you may enjoy it.” I accepted the book immediately!

Another reason why this will be good for you? I read this author’s book, LOVED it (because it has my kind of humor), and went on to call it one of the best books of 2017. Find your target audience and get them to read your book.

4. Include details about the book in your email.

This is obvious, but surprisingly, many authors don’t know what information they should include. The blogger needs details about the book for them to make a decision. And no, a one line description won’t suffice. Your email should include:

  • The book title
  • Description
  • Genre
  • Book number, if it’s part of a series.
  • Number of pages
  • Publication date, especially for ARCs.

The next post in this series will discuss this further.

5. Don’t be presumptuous.

You are only emailing the blogger about review consideration. Don’t attach a digital copy of your book to your very first email to the blogger. That’s just presumptuous.

 

This isn’t one size fits all, though. Find out which details YOU think are important to mention in the email and go with them. But NEVER reach out to a blogger without reading their review policy first. They have a life of their own and are reading your book for free in their free time. Don’t waste that time by requesting reviews if your book’s genre or type (physical or digital) doesn’t fit their interests.

The next post in this blog series will be on how to write the perfect review request email.

 

What did you think of this post? How do you solicit a book review? Let me know in the comments!

~ Shruti

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50 thoughts on “AuthorsGetLit: 5 tips for getting a blogger to review your book.

  1. Good advice, and please don’t make us jump through hoops to get your book once we agree to review. I don’t want to sign up to another site, click this, choose that, download an app, upload you e-mail to my kindle… I just want a paperback copy sent to my address or a mobi file I can upload quickly to my kindle.
    It might be easier for the author, but we get lots of review requests and our time is limited, the easiest way to get a book will more likely get a review.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Yeah, I hate getting e-mails or even private messages on my facebook page from authors who don’t really understand what I enjoy in the books I read.
    Plus, on my blog, I’ve stated that I don’t accept any new review request atm, and that I won’t respond to any e-mails about that.
    I still get slightly aggressive follow-up e-mails a couple of days after the first e-mail. *sighs*
    Great post, Shruti!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This is such great advice! I’m sure we all get emails every day that don’t include half of this information and it’s frustrating. How can you expect me to want to read your book if you don’t even care enough about me to read my review policy? I just got a review request the other day that asked if I’d read their book for an honest review and then linked me to the book’s website… like thanks for a) not reading my policy because you didn’t give me anything I asked for and b) making me do all of the work. It is best if an author truly shows appreciation for you and the time you’ll be investing in reading their book.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yup, if the author values the time we spend reading and reviewing their book, they’d actually go through our blog in the first place. I’ve had some amazing authors send emails that begin with lines like “it has a lot of self-deprecation” or “there’s a lot of satire and dark humour in this one, so you’ll enjoy it”. That makes me so happy! I have a weird sense of humour and these authors took the time to point out that their books do too! xD

      In all, authors should at least read the review policy, if they don’t have time to read some posts.

      Like

  4. Great advice, Shruti! Most of the requests I’ve received are clearly from author’s who haven’t read my review policy or looked at the types of books I review on my blog.

    Another point I would add is that an author should make it very clear if their request is going to result in the blogger being included in a street team, blogtour, or anything with a deadline or other requirements.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Long time, Yvette! xD

      And yes, it’s very disheartening when an author sends a request that makes it painfully obvious that they haven’t looked at your review policy. And the point you’ve added is great! I don’t like blitzes and tours, so I need authors to be upfront about it in their emails.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Thanks so much for writing this Shruti!! I hate getting review requests where the genre of the book isn’t included or worse, the genre is incomplete. A publisher emailed me once calling a middle grade novel YA😐

    The genre is what makes me decide whether to continue reading a request email or not and it’s so annoying when that’s messed up.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re right! It’s so annoying when your review policy clearly states which genres you don’t like and the publisher requests a review for one of those.

      I don’t mind any genre, so I’ve mentioned that in my review policy, but other bloggers definitely suffer because of this.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I agree so much with what you said! As I’m learning more about blogging and marketing (I’m self studying it), the biggest thing I’ve seen with emails is that you got to be personal. I get so many emails that are spammy-looking or impersonalized that I ignore them immediately. I added onto my review policy to add why you believe this book is a great fit for me–I’ll consider your book more if you answer that question! Great post! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh you’re studying marketing? I work in marketing! xD

      And, wow, I’m loving your review policy idea. Better yet, we should all do this in our contact forms. Because when the emails are personal, it definitely makes us want to say yes more. 😊

      Thanks for stopping by, Kester! You should write about the extra question in your review policy! Many a blogger would benefit from it. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Aww thank you! Currently, I’m part of a club called DECA, which is an international marketing organization for high school students, and the more I’m studyig for my competition (marketing communications) the more I realized I love everything about marketing and PR and publicity. Certainly, I love what you’re doing to help new bloggers, and I definitely have a lot to learn from you—blogging and marketing wise. 😉

        And that would be a great idea! I might have to do that in the future—I’ve been taught in my marketing studies to always display the benefits of your product and answer “What’s in it for me? What will I gain from this?” and certainly authors can use this for us. Personalization is a big key to success, and definitely I would love to see more authors do that. I haven’t had an author follow my review policy in a while, so I need to re-emphasize that soon! 😊

        Thank you for all your support! Maybe one day we should do a collaboration! That would be really awesome to do! 😊

        Liked by 1 person

          1. Thank you! Even though that might not be the major I’m going to pursue in college, I really hope that I’ll be able to use my marketing skills in my future career! And yes, definitely! If ever I have any ideas, I’ll let you know! And if you have any, please feel free to contact me! 🙂

            Liked by 1 person

  7. Ugh, nothing irks me more than an author who OBVIOUSLY didn’t read the blog’s review policy, AND sends an unsolicited copy of their book, under a genre the blogger doesn’t even read from. *smashes fist onto table* Awesome post, Shruti! Bookmarking this to add to my February wrap-up! ❤

    – Aimee @ Aimee, Always

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Great post Shruti! I really hope that authors actually read this. Most of the time they don’t read the review policy which seriously irritates me. Also, I have clearly mentioned that at the moment, I am not accepting any requests, but again.. here they are…not reading anything on your blog!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Tbh, I don’t mind the copy-pasted email feeling since it’s A LOT of work for authors to reach out to bloggers, and for every 100 bloggers they contact, they’re lucky to get like 4 reviews, so I feel for them. But they do need to read my review policy and include the info I’ve asked for! Like, I specifically ask them to mention if the book is part of a series and if it has the same MC because that could make or break my decision. But sometimes it’s clear they haven’t bothered to read the policy at all, especially when they offer a book in a genre I don’t even read.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, I understand the copy-pasted emails part. But, ugh, when they don’t read your review policy and it shows in the email, it’s just sad. My review policy is a one minute read. An author who’s taken the time to read it will definitely be accepted when they email me.

      Like

  10. This is such a good guide and I wish all people who request reviews would read this! I have to say that being personal is always a BIG plus for me when it comes to a review request, and knowing that they’ve read what I am interested in or not too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah! Sometimes, I get mails that begin with “dear blogger”. Like, no. Don’t do this. We know you’ve bulk-emailed a bunch of us. And I get that big publishing houses send out emails to a lot of bloggers, but finding out our names could take, what, a minute for each name? Is it that difficult? *sighs*

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Great post 🙂 I’ll be sharing. Hey, you know what is my pet peeve? When they don’t include a Goodreads link. Cause hell, I just don’t like Amazon links. No friend reviews there that I can see… It’s just, ugh. One guy though, sent me an online presentation once! I thought that was really cool, it was so visual. I loved it 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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