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?
For your own sanity, avoid review exchanges
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.
How to profit from your writing: online store.
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