What is Goodreads and Why Should Authors Use It?

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If you’re an author than you’re probably a reader too. If you don’t have a profile at Goodreads you might want to consider joining. Even if you don’t have a book to publish yet, you should still consider building your presence there. I know, it’s one more social media site, one more distraction away from your wip, and one more techy thing you have to learn. Bleh!

But joining will help readers know who you are, and when it’s time to publish your novel you’ll reap the rewards. Take a tour of the Author Tutorial to get started. Even if your book isn’t available you can still upload your book. (You might have to double check how to get around the ISBN thing. But if you’ve bought the ISBN for your novel you could input that in even if your book isn’t for sale yet.)

Here are the benefits:

  1. Meet other readers.
  2. Meet other writers.
  3. Meet book reviewers.
  4. Have an author page where you can link your blog, book trailer, discussion questions, or website.
  5. Accumulate fans.
  6. Upload your novel before it’s available to the public. If you’re an Indie author you can’t do this with Amazon.
  7. You can send readers ARC (advanced reader copies) and get them to write and upload a review so other readers get excited about your book before it’s available and add your book to their “TO READ” shelf.
  8. Run a give-away to create a buzz about your book. You decide how many you want to give away. (Below is what my giveaway looks like.)
  9. Follow reviewers who might be open to writing a review for your novel.
  10. Run ads that are inexpensive, but target the markets you want. Be sure to read what Goodreads recommends. For instance, I have two ads running for the same book. (See example below.) One ad targets certain authors. The other targets genres or keywords. I’ll play with these to see where I get the most clicks. So far my targeted markets ad is doing better than targeted authors. The good thing is that I can go in and tweak these ads. It takes a day or so to get approval, but it’s not terribly long.
  11. I specify my dollar limit for each click and for each day, and pay only when someone clicks on the book.
  12. Goodreads gives me the WIDGET to put my give-away at my side-bar. see it next to this post. Readers only have to click on it to enter.
  13. Reviewers – If you’re writing YA or NA Romance you can find readers to review your book at Goodreads here. To sign up your book to be part of the Read to Review program, please check out the info at that link.Screen shot 2013-08-02 at 10.45.27 AM

This is what the ads look like. Notice that I have two running for the same novel. One targets genres and the other targets specific authors. Goodreads recommends running ads this way.

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Are you a member at GOODREADS? How have you found it helpful?

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