Kindle Publishing: Honest Reviews

Kindle Publishing: Honest Reviews

If you’re a Kindle publishing author, sooner or later you’ll be invited into review exchanges. Should you exchange reviews with another author? Or pay for reviews?

My opinion…

For your own sanity, avoid review exchanges

Amazon’s quite clear on its policies. Buying/ exchanging reviews is a no-no. Writers’ Cafe has a discussion about it.

Yes, getting reviews is hard. How you deal with that is a personal decision. I’m a reader, and I get a lot of information and pleasure from others’ reviews.

Authors can and do get outed for dodgy practices all the time. Buying/ exchanging reviews may not be worth tarnishing your brand long-term.

How to get reviews

We’ve discussed how you get reviews before.

When students ask me about reviews, I suggest that they focus on building their readership. Some of your readers will give you a review. Maybe one in a thousand. (And of course, you have no guarantee that it will be a “good” review.)

Build your readership by…

  • Creating a mailing list;
  • Asking for readers to review your book  in the back matter of your books;
  • Engaging with readers;
  • Informing and entertaining readers and prospective readers (blogging);
  • Advertising your books, so that you get readers and subscribers…

In other words: marketing.

Reviews are a shortcut to sales… maybe

Authors tend to consider reviews a shortcut to sales, but readers aren’t silly. If they see a bunch of fawning 5-star reviews, that’s no guarantee that they will buy your book. And once they buy your book, and don’t like it, here’s every chance that they’ll leave a 1-star review to say that they’re disappointed.

Reviews are meant to be someone’s opinion. Amazon’s review policy is clear. You’ll have to decide whether buying or exchanging reviews is worth it to you.

, on Twitter: @angee, and find Angela on Pinterest, too.

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Angela Booth is a top copywriter, multi-published author, and writing teacher. She offers many guides, courses and classes to help writers to enhance their skills on her websites. She also provides inspiration and motivation for writers on her writing blogs. Angela has been writing successfully since the late 1970s, and was online in the 1980s, long before the birth of the Web. Her business books have been widely published.