Think for a few minutes about the kinds of things that make you want to pick up a book and read it.
Most of the time we read a book because it’s by an author we already know and love.
Sometimes a cover might attract us to take a closer look, particularly if we’re browsing in a brick-and-mortar store.
But I’m guessing the large majority of us discover books based on word of mouth. The word-of-mouth process usually goes something like this:
We hear someone mention a book, perhaps in passing. We don’t really give it much thought, after all we already have plenty of books clamoring for our over-loaded attention.
But interestingly, the next day while scrolling through our Facebook home page, the book pops up again. Someone else exclaims how much they enjoyed the book, enough to stay up into the wee hours of the morning to finish it.
Even though our interest is definitely perked at this point, it will likely take another time or two of “hearing” someone talk about the book (perhaps on twitter or a blog review or seeing it on a friend’s shelf on GoodReads).
Finally, after a handful of times we “hear” about the book, we decide that we need to check it out for ourselves. We head to the online reviews, browse through them, and then decide if it’s one we’d like to purchase or one we’d like to try out from the library first.
Does the above scenario ring true for you? It’s usually my process for finding a new book to read.
All that to say, WORD OF MOUTH plays a pivotal, powerful, and persuasive role in the life and success of a book.
Of course, when an AUTHOR toots her own horn, the noise usually falls on deaf ears. Most people don’t trust what authors say about their own books, because obviously they’re going to say super nice things even if the book was just okay.
But when a READER offers genuine praise, then people sit up and take notice, particularly when multiple readers are saying the same thing.
I often don’t think readers understand the amount of power they hold over the success or failure of a book. Before I became an author, I didn’t realize the difference I could make with my recommendations and praise of books. But now that I do, I embrace the challenge with enthusiasm.
The great thing about WORD OF MOUTH promotion is that it’s usually fairly quick and easy to do. It doesn’t require a huge time commitment or investment of energy.
In fact, here are five simple things we can do to spread the word about a book we loved:
1. Mention the book on Facebook and/or Twitter. Try to be specific about something you liked about the book. Provide the link to the author’s website or to an online bookstore.
2. Post the book cover on Instagram or Pinterest. Create a “Favorite Books” or “Books I’ve Read Recently” board. Again, make sure to link the pin to the author’s website or a bookstore.
3. Take a picture of yourself (or with a pet) with the book. Or develop a graphic with a quote from the book. Post those pictures on social media along with your enthusiasm about the book.
4. Tell friends and/or family about the book. Include why you think they might enjoy it. In fact, be willing to pass along your copy and encourage them to do the same when they’re done.
5. Leave a review on one of the online review sites, preferably more than one place. Copying and pasting your review from one site to another is perfectly okay!
I’m currently adding a limited number of new Influencers to my Launch Team for my upcoming release, With You Always (releasing June 1). In exchange for a free copy of the book, I ask my influencers to commit to doing at least five influencer actions. I provide a long list of ideas (including the ones listed above).
If you’d like to find out more about the book, please check out my Books Page. And if you’d like more information about becoming an Influencer on my Launch Team, please email me at: jodyhedlundbooks (at) gmail (dot) com.
How about you, dear readers? What influences YOU the most in the books you choose to read? Is it word of mouth or something else?