Do you think Bookbub is only for authors who run ads on that book promotion platform? Think again. You can do a lot to be noticed and build a presence on Bookbub that will help your books sell.
What is Bookbub?
Bookbub is an online community where an author can set up books (with covers, synopsis, and buy links) on their personal page at no cost to you. For example, this nice url (with no ads from others) has my name, photo, bio, books I’ve reviewed, those I’ve recommended, and of course, the ones under my author name.
I also love the simple but powerful format they allow for individual books. Some important details here for an author to notice that a reader loves:
Bookbub now has a wishlist. If readers put your book on a LOT of Wishlists, it can be featured in an email Bookbub sends out direct to readers!
Buy from includes ALL the links where they can buy your book so, if you are wide, this is great.
The genre selections are far better and more descriptive than Amazon. I love some of the options they allow me to put here because it explains my book better to readers.
How to gain followers
Like I’ve written before, it’s a great place for readers to follow authors – why? Because you will receive an email when your favorite author puts something as a new release! They are fast about notifying readers directly about new books. That’s an obvious benefit to an author.
I’ve been told that once you surpass 1,000 followers, you unlock some special features on Bookbub. I’ll let you know if that is truth or rumor once I get there.
To gain followers on Bookbub, use your social media and newsletter to encourage cross-platform following.
In addition, you can try one of these advertising options, such as Fiction-Atlas Author Builder (by CL Cannon) or LitRing (by Melissa Storm). I’ve used both and would recommend giving them a try. However, I would only do about 2-4 times a year, or you end up not having the impact you might want for the money.
Network with other authors
Because Bookbub isn’t as saturated (yet) with users, you can often connect better with small to mid-sized authors. It helps level the playing field a bit where your followers and comments may not be noticed by the author on a big platform like Amazon, Goodreads, Facebook, or Instagram.
Networking with authors and sharing reviews of each other’s books is a hot trend. Bookbub lets you get in it!
Reviewing on Bookbub is easy
The reality is that many readers don’t like the punitive, bully nature of Amazon towards reviewers. They are turned off and refuse to review there – but they may be open (or even prefer) reviewing at Bookbub. Why? Because Bookbub only allows reviews of 3+ starred books. The review can ONLY be short, and they help guide the reader on making some decisions, so it is more user friendly.
If your book gets a lot of reviews in the beginning of its launch, Bookbub might even feature it in an email as a hot new read send it directly to their subscribed readers (again at NO cost to you).
Easily see your Bookbub reviews and respond to readers
I love the way your feed notifies you that someone has reviewed one of your books. It is MUCH simpler than the way Goodreads handles this. Because they only allow a 3+ star, rating it also isn’t as brutal as Goodreads. If someone would give your book 1 or 2 stars, then they can’t recommend.
Once someone responds with a 4 or 5 star review, I like it and make a short POSITIVE comment. Always be positive, and if the review upsets you, don’t respond. This helps you connect with readers and lets them know you appreciate them, fostering a relationship. And books sell because of relationships.
Could your Book get a FREE mention?
A book has to get a lot of talk going to be featured, but it is a possibility. With enough followers putting your book on their wishlist, or with enough reviews, you could get featured in an article. Emails like this go out to interested readers, and do roundup lists and highlights of books readers are liking, commenting, reviewing, and putting on wishlists.
Your Reviews of other Books could get a Shout-out
I do review books on Bookbub but only those that meet these criteria:
- I can honestly give the book 4 or 5 stars. Remember, this will be viewed by your AUTHOR name and take care of your reputation.
- My readers might be interested in reading the book themselves because it matches their interest (though I often break this rule for an exceptional book). For example, I write fairytales based in the Regency era. Reviewing other like-minded Regency “sweet” romances helps establish me as an expert and someone to follow by those readers who enjoy the same.
When you post a review for another person’s book on Bookbub, here is a breakdown of what other readers see:
Here’s another benefit! Let’s say you review a book on Bookbub, and later that book goes on sale. Bookbub will send an email to those who follow you (and I also think it may be a general email, not sure yet), and your review might be highlighted in this email!
This is at NO cost to you, AND it starts to set you up as an expert in the type of books your readers will enjoy reading. Since Bookbub isn’t glutted with reviewers (like Goodreads), it’s a great place to have your authority get established and be seen!
For me personally, I am orienting my time towards places where READERS ARE, which means Bookbub and Goodreads, as well as direct newsletters sent to readers. For Bookbub, I’m trying to do a review once a week, and to respond to reviews of my books when they come up. I also only follow authors OR diehard, faithful friends. Unlike Goodreads, there is no Friend circle (thank goodness).
Of course, Bookbub’s prime area of business is to get you to advertise. However, I want you to think of how you can use this reader’s platform in other ways to increase your visibility. And when you do run a Bookbub ad, you’ll be ready to maximize it!