Many authors I have encountered say that they don’t put much thought or effort into their activity on Goodreads because they feel it just doesn’t matter. Oh how wrong they are. Goodreads not only allows authors to connect with readers, but it can also help authors connect with each other. This could mean guest blog opportunities and other ways for authors to collaborate and get their books in front of more people.
Setting Up Your Goodreads Author Profile
The first step to success on Goodreads is making sure you have an author profile that is perfected. If you have any books already in the Goodreads database, then claim them. If they aren’t in the database then there is a way to manually add your books. Once you have added or claimed your books there are a few other steps you should take. Add your author photo to your profile, add an author bio that attracts readers and a call-to-action to sign up for your email newsletter. You should also add your blog and at least one video.
Once your profile is up and going, rate at least twenty books, this gives you additional features that you don’t have access too until you’ve rated twenty books. Then start adding friends, if you’re looking to add many friends at once then you may want to import friends from Facebook. After all this is done, start asking your readers to share their reviews from Amazon to Goodreads also. When people agree to do a review for you, send them the URL to the book’s Goodreads page so they can easily share their review there as well as Goodreads.
Staying Active and Getting Yourself Noticed
There are several ways for you to stay active and get your profile more noticed on Goodreads, you can update progress on books you are reading and then review them after you have finished. The more often you do this, the more you will build your community in Goodreads, and get yourself noticed more. Another way you can get yourself active and noticed on Goodreads is by liking reviews of your book or the reviews of books that you have read and reviewed yourself.
You could also vote on lists or polls that are happening around Goodreads, or find a book you would like to read in the future and add it to your “Want to Read” list. As you read those books update progress and review, the more often you do this the better. Another huge way to get active on Goodreads is to start or join discussions, join discussions on some of your favorite classic books or even on your favorite genre. You can also start a discussion about one of your books and give all your readers a place to discuss the book together. Not only can you join discussions though, you can also join groups on Goodreads. These groups can be a great place to network and some will even let you request reviews. If you join a group and find out that it just isn’t right for you, you can leave that group and join another, additionally Goodreads doesn’t limit the number of groups you can join.
Using Goodreads to Promote
There are several ways that authors can use Goodreads to promote their brand or books. Goodreads has a great hidden way for your friends to promote your books too! Your friends on Goodreads can recommend your books to their friends. They can also share your books to their Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest pages.
In addition to sharing your books all over the place with all of your friends, you can advertise events that you are hosting elsewhere on Goodreads for FREE! You can also create Q & A’s and quizzes about your books.
Rewarding Your Readers
Goodreads makes it really easy for authors to host giveaways for their readers. While many authors feel that giving away their book doesn’t do them any good since it is sales they are looking for, that really isn’t the case. By hosting a giveaway, you are likely to bring a lot of extra traffic to your blog or website and pique interest in your book. I have seen many authors who do just one giveaway of their book and increase their reader base, mailing list and followers all in one shot. When you host that giveaway on Goodreads it draws followers not only to your social media but to your Goodreads author profile also. Another great way to reward your readers is to do a free or discount weekend every now and then, while it may be hard to see in the beginning, a free weekend can be very helpful. Many people see a surge in downloads and reviews over their free weekends.
Giveaways and free weekends can do a lot to make a buzz about your books, but another great way to reward your readers is to give them a little piece of your book that they can’t get elsewhere. Goodreads allows you to share excerpts of your books on your author profile, pique interest and gain attention to your upcoming books, share an excerpt from them on your Goodreads profile before it is published.