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Getting more book reviews for self-published books

Getting more book reviews for self-published books

Self-published authors often complain about how hard it is to get book reviews. Many of my clients are self published authors.

I don’t think that media distinguish books by whether they are from self-publishers or quality publshers that much any more. Some do, but it’s because they make an assumpition of quality. That is what they really seek to do anyway so as not to waste their time. They separate books that are quality books from books that are not.

Self published books get reviews day in day out. I will heartily affirm the advice from Jacqueline Simmons of Beagle Bay and Jim Cox of Midwest Book Review that a quality book is the first essential requirement.

But there is a second essential requirement you need to get down pat especially if you want to achieve financial success with your book.

That is this: You have to talk to your target audience and persuade them to take action to get your quality product. That means that the messages you create have to communicate meaningfully and incite and even galvanize these people to action.

There are many ways that authors can do that. The best way is to simply decide that you want to truly impress and interest the right people. So start with this question:

Who is going to be most interested in what I can talk about? This can’t be “everyone”. It has to be people in a pool or group that has similar interests. Then you have to think up how you are going to reach them and communicate with them. You have to identify the communications technology and pathway you will use.

Finally you ask yourself to identify what are you going to say in three minutes that will get them to come right up and hand you money.

You may think this is a crazy way to sell books or to get book reviews, but I do this for authors for a living. Authors are actually the best person to identify “the magic words” because when they start talking sincerely and openly and get spontaneous and excited about their writing, that’s when they say the things that interest people the most.

AND THE BEST PART ABOUT THIS IS THAT YOU CAN DO THIS ANYWHERE.

But you may need help with this. You may need to work with someone who watches your audience when you talk and notices what happens when you say certain things. What you are looking for is the sentences and speech that gets people to drill you with rapt attention.

You need to identify and capture what you say that really turns people on.

This is the exact language and information that you need to use in your news releases that get you book reviews. This is what you need to use so that you also get feature stories and interviews. You need to learn what you can say that really turns people on. It may or may not be inside the book you wrote. Don’t think that it has to be out of the book. It can be about you, your topic, your dog or your Aunt Tilly. It just has to be so good that people get so interested in you that they are persuaded to take a look at your creation.

From my experience with authors and experts of all types, what it really comes down to is a three to five minute piece that galvanizes people with you doing what you absolutely do the best. There is a method that I use to help people develop what they need. Here it is:

Imagine being in front of 20 to 30 of the very best people you think would be most interested you and what you do. Describe these people so that you have a picture of who they are and what they look like.

Now identify the absolute most interesting topic, challenge, or problem situation you can think of, that will interest the maximum number of people just like them.

NOW give them your five to ten best tips, problem solving actions, ideas, stories, jokes, or lessons learned. WHATEVER! Just focus your energy on your target audience and give them your very best. Can you give these people your ten commandments? Can you knock their socks off so that half of them come flying out of their chairs with their pocketbooks or wallets open? (BTW that’s a 50 percent response). That’s your goal. Do you realize that even if you only get one in ten to buy, that’s a ten percent response, and that’s still remarkable. Most business operate their marketing profitably at a much lower response rate. Less than 1 percent.

I want you to pretend you have three to five minutes to give a these people eight to maybe ten absolutely phenomenal show stoppers. That means for ten items, you have less than 20 seconds or less for each one, plus a one minute intro and a one minute ending.

This is what we put into your news release. This si what you offer to reviewers to get them interested in your book. Don’t think that all you need to do is describe your book. That’s not going to cut it. You need to prove that people will be interested. You need to communicate and demonstrate the value to the audience.

The goal is to create a vision for the media that clearly illustrates and allows them to see in their minds — How you can help or entertain or educate the people you can help or educate or entertain the most.

Focus less on ideas than on actions that people can take to deliver immediate or tangible real time or near term benefits, impacts, or predictable consequences. These show stoppers should be “Do This Today” types of actions.

This forms the core content to the news release/show proposal pitch.

These will also be publishable as an article with some caveats we can add to the beginning and ending of the core content to turn it into a proper news release offering. It will also become the core script for a Q & A style interview, so they serve many purposes. These ideas will also persuade media editors to ask for and review your book.

You can do whatever you can do. You just have to be your wittiest and most galvanizing self. You can be humorous and/or serious, just be good and make them memorable. Keep them G Rated.

This method works. I use it all the time to get my clients to stop selling and really create, develop and offer the media the news, education and entertainment they need to decide to give people media coverage. I used this technique with authors of all types.

Want proof? Create a Google News Alert on the words ‘book review’ so you can receive clips and see who’s getting covered to your heart’s content like this:

http://news.google.com/news/search?pz=1&ned=us&hl=en&q=book+review+

Study the results each day and see how the media is writing about book authors these days. Evaluate existing coverage and use my 3 I technique.

So here’s the bottom line. I hope you take may advice. Self published authors do get reviews.

First WRITE A GOOD BOOK.

Second LEARN HOW TO TURN PEOPLE ON WHEN YOU SPEAK ABOUT YOUR BOOK.

Help the people you can help the most and offer the very best most educational and entertaining three to five minutes of talk you possibly can.

BY the way, if you do follow this advice, send me your best tips or talking points in an email message. I’ll be happy to comment and give you recommendations on what you’ve created and show you how to go the distance to create a news release that will produce the maximum results.

This is how you’ll get the most media response, the best book reviews and the most effective publicity you’ve ever experienced. You’ll also sell more books.

I guarantee that once you create and prove this little script of yours and once you really get it down and prove to yourself that it’s repeatable, you can use it again and again everywhere you go. That’s the miracle of the microcosm in America. We’ve got a country of 330 million media indoctrinated people, and once you learn how to galvanize them in your back yard, you can use technology to repeat the message and reproduce the response again and again.