Goodreads is the biggest platform on the internet that connects readers and writers. It’s like Facebook focused only on books. It is no surprise to learn that most readers find the books they like on Goodreads – be it through recommendations from friends or browsing through a Listopia (lists that rate books of similar genre, or books from the same decade, etc.). Writers reap a lot of benefits simply from being on Goodreads and gathering a following, because this ensures a lot of readers out there are aware of when the writer’s new book is coming out. Below, you will find 5 tips which will help you integrate yourself as a writer into the Goodreads community, and how to use Goodreads to improve upon your career as a writer.
1. Be both a reader and a writer
Writers read plenty of books – but how often do they review them? Posting reviews of books you’ve read is a way to get noticed – especially if many of the readers on Goodreads agree with your review and like it. Additionally, readers love to know which books their favorite authors have read and enjoyed. Being a reader will help you get in touch with the rest of the Goodreads community, and it will help you create an image of a genuine book lover who writes because of the stories and books, and doesn’t write for sales.
2. Use giveaways
Never resent giving books away for free on Goodreads. If you can’t afford a free paperback giveaway due to shipping costs and such, you can always host an e-book giveaway to garner reviews. It doesn’t hurt to ask readers to review your book on Goodreads after they read it, or on Amazon, or another platform. Most of the readers will comply, and at least rate your book if they don’t usually write reviews. You can also target specific readers who you know like books of your genre, and who write elaborate reviews on the books they read. Don’t be afraid of negative reviews – the goal here is to increase the number of reviews your book has on Goodreads. Nothing tells the readers that the book they are viewing isn’t worth their time like lack of reviews on Goodreads.
3. Host Q&A sessions and groups
Create public groups and announce that you will host a Q&A session at a specific time and date and invite all of the readers who have rated and reviewed your book. Even those who left negative reviews (they might actually ask more questions than the readers who left glowingly positive reviews.). Hosting a Q&A session is a very good way to get in touch with your readers – and research your target audience. Knowing what they liked and disliked, understood and misunderstood about your previous novels will help you create and craft books that will be better than the ones before, and you will know when you might go into a direction your readers will not like. Moreover, paying attention this way to your readers will endear you to them even more, and you will notice that when you publish a new book and see the results.
4. Get your books on a Listopia
A Listopia lists and rates books of the same genre, and books that come out in the same month. Getting your books on the right Listopia(s) will increase the visibility of your book on Goodreads in general. Additionally, your readers will be able to vote and rate it and if your book gets to the top of the list, it will increase the books popularity and yours as a writer as well. Just make sure you get your books on the right Listopia(s). For example, if you’re writing a YA romance, you need to find a Listopia that focuses on YA romance instead of YA contemporary novels.
5. Connect your blog to Goodreads
One of the best features of Goodreads is that you can connect your blog to your author’s page on Goodreads. Every time you write a blog post, your readers will be aware of that. This way, Goodreads helps you increase the visits on your blog, which will increase your online presence in general, not only on Goodreads itself. Also, you can post your upcoming virtual and non-virtual events on your Goodreads page and invite your readers to participate, or attend if you’re visiting a local bookstore, for example. In effect, you can use Goodreads to build the groundwork of your online platform, and ensure your readers are always on top of everything that you post: be it about an upcoming book you’re planning to release, a book you like, or a simple blog post.
Image credit: Jurgen Appelo on flickr and reproduced under Creative Commons 2.0[author] [author_image timthumb=’on’]https://writingtipsoasis.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/photo.jpg[/author_image] [author_info]Georgina Roy wants to live in a world filled with magic. As an art student, she’s moonlighting as a writer and is content to fill notebooks and sketchbooks with magical creatures and amazing new worlds. When she is not at school, or scribbling away in a notebook, you can usually find her curled up, reading a good urban fantasy novel, or writing on her laptop, trying to create her own.