Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Goodreads Giveaways

by Rebecca Talley

My first book, Heaven Scent, was published in 2008. It was automatically added to Goodreads. I'd never heard of Goodreads and had no idea what to do with it. Since that time 137 people have added it to their to-read shelf.

My second book, Altared Plans, was published in 2009. Again, it was automatically added to Goodreads and with this book I became aware of Goodreads Giveaways so I initiated one giveaway contest in which 669 people entered to win a copy. As of today, 191 people have added it to their to-read shelf.

My third book, The Upside of Down, was published in January 2011 and was added to Goodreads. Since I was aware of the giveaway contest that Goodreads sponsors I decided to do one about the time the book was released. 1230 people entered that contest. I held it for one month. A few months later, I did another giveaway for about a week or so and 979 people entered. I decided to do another giveaway for the month of June and 1368 people entered. As of today, 638 people have added this book to their to-read shelf--quite a jump from how many people have added my other two books.

I share these stats with you to show you that doing a Goodreads giveaway helps expose your book to many people. As you can see, many more people added The Upside of Down and I think it's a direct result of the giveaways I held.

Doing a Goodreads Giveaway contest is simple. Go to the page that lists your book, click on the "list a giveaway" icon in the upper right and then follow the directions. You can decide how many copies you want to give away and to what countries. Goodreads advertises the  giveaway, determines the winner, and then sends you the address(es) of the winner(s). Your only responsibility is to mail off the copy, or copies, of your book soon after the contest ends. Easy, easy, easy. For the price of a copy of your book, an envelope, and postage you can get your book in front of hundreds of people. Seems like a great deal, eh?

I try to respond to those who rate and review my books on Goodreads. In doing so, I met a woman who loved The Upside of Down. She was not LDS, my target market, but she really enjoyed it. When I asked how she'd heard about it, she said she'd entered the giveaway contest and when she didn't win she bought the book anyway. Hopefully, she'll now recommend it to her friends. Of course, it's impossible to determine exact sales from a marketing effort, but at least one person bought my book as a result of that contest.

As authors we want to write, we don't want to waste time marketing. But, that's a very important part of our job if we want our book to be successful. After doing Facebook ads, Goodreads ads, display ads, sending out postcards, emails, doing signings, holding my own contests on my blog, and doing blog hops, I'd say that doing a Goodreads Giveaway is one of the most cost-effective ways to advertise your book.


Crystal Collier said...

That is truly awesome. Who needs a blog give away when you can hit 5 times as many people through Goodreads? Thanks for the tip!

Steve Westover said...

Thanks for the post Rebecca

Christy Monson said...

What great ideas. I've just joined Good Reads and love categorizing and cataloging the books I've read into shelves. But here's another great way to use it. Thnanks so much. Christy Monson

Jane Isfeld Still said...

Stunning! Thanks :)