Sunday, January 29, 2012

11 Using Book Reviews as a Self Promotion Tool

Hi All,
Happy Sunday. Today, I wanted to talk about book reviews and how you can use them in your marketing strategy as a self-promotional tool.  Now, writers are different than marketers, that's why it's my goal to teach you to be both.  True dedicated writers aren't about self promotion, they are about the craft (at heart) and they write for a variety of reasons.  I'm not saying good writing won't sell itself, don't get me wrong.  What I'm saying is most writers are uncomfortable wtih self-promotion.

True marketers are shameless when it comes to self promotion (trust me on this one). So, as writers and marketers we have to find a way to balance the two. 

So, let's take a review on

for example.  Since I'm using myself as the example here, I'm going to post a review of MOD's 2nd book: How to Use the Power of Your Brand.

The reviewer (Roxanne Bland who rated MOD 4 out of 5 stars) said the following:

Jennifer Fusco does a great job advising readers about the various ways to market yourself to the reading public without taking too much away from an author's writing time. She writes in an engaging style that to some might seem flippant, but it was obvious to me that she's deadly serious. Some of the suggestions she made were a little confusing to me, so I'll have to go back and re-read, which is why I'm giving it four stars. All in all, one of the most useful marketing publications I've read since I've begun exploring this subject to sell my soon-to-be published book.(

Not only did I respond to Ms. Bland's comments on goodreads, but my next step will be to thank her publically via Facebook and Twitter calling attention to the review and the reviewer.  Now, what we hope is that Ms. Bland will see my acknowlegement via social media and respond in kind.  This keeps the dialogue going, keep my book and its title in the forefront of the conversation and gives others the opportunity to join the discussion. 

So, once you get a review of your work, be sure to take it one step further and turn it into a self promotional tool.  I caution you to becareful of how you position your message.  Make sure you are giving true thanks and do not turn it into a "yay for me" message. Boastfulness is not attractive.

So guys, think you can do it? 


Pj Schott said...

So much of promotion is just good manners. Just like people overthink partner dancing (which is just moving to music together) humans tend to overthink the marketing process.

Jennifer Fusco said...

True that, honey.

Good to see you Pj--I hope you are well. Most of self promo is good manners. I think today with the rise of the e-culture blowing people off my not responding or the "YAY FOR ME" message has become the norm.

You're a marketer as I am, and we know that's the fastest way to turn people OFF. Plus, good manner are FREE. No marketing dollars needed.

Have a great day, hon.

Rhonda Lane said...

I love that - good manners are free.

Plus, online writing has no body language or vocal inflections to support a message, so misunderstandings can happen too easily.

Been there, done that - all too recently.

Thank you for the reminders, Jennifer.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Jennifer, for the great advice. Yes, most of it is good manners, but in this day and age, good manners seem to have fallen by the wayside. Thanks for reminding us, it's always in fashion to have good manners.
Gerri Brousseau

Jennifer Fusco said...

Hey Rhonda Lane, where'd you think I got the idea for the post. (snort!)

Nice seeing you here, Gerri. You are right. Hopefully one day manners will come back in fashion.

Casey Wyatt said...

Thanks Jennifer. I was just pondering this question since I have a nice five star review for Mystic Ink on Amazon. Were you just reading my mind?? Ohhh, you are really goood!!

Jennifer Fusco said...

Oh yeah, Casey. Get some mileage out of that. Tweet your thank you and tag the reviewer, if you know them on FB.

Congrats on the 5 stars! Now, I should've mentioned that I don't know the nice lady who reviewed can take more liberties if you know the reviewer than if you don't. I should've mentioned that.

Rhonda Lane said...

LOL! Always happy to be of service. :) :)

PJ Sharon said...

This is great advice, Jennifer, and I've just started doing this--responding to reviewers. This can be a double edged sword, however, so the manners part is a must. I've seen where responding to a review can get authors in trouble, as anything can be misconstrued and people can easily become defensive. So in saying that, I would just caution how we respond. Shorter is better (gives us less chance to get into trouble), and we should avoid defending our work, which is very easy to do when someone says something we don't agree with or is out and out wrong information. I say, either don't comment at all or a simple "thanks for taking time to read and review my book," should suffice.

Katy Lee said...

As always, your blogs are right on time. :)

I won't forget this.

Jennifer Fusco said...

Absoluetly PJ, I should've mentioned that too. But I knew I was dealing with the professionals who visit the MOD blog...and we'd be nothing but prim and proper, right?