Author Marketing: Learning All About GoodReads!

Owned by Amazon, GoodReads is a social network designed specifically for readers with over 20 million members.

Their mission is to help people find and share books they love by improving the reading and learning process throughout the world. Goodreads addressed what publishers call the “discovery problem,” guiding consumers to find books they might want to read in the digital age. 

It’s a powerful tool that can help you escalate into some of the most significant reader communities. You can take advantage of this platform by following these steps:

Get Started

    • Sign up as a reader. You must sign up as a reader and complete your profile. Don’t forget to add a photo of you; no one wants to connect with a faceless icon.
    • Claim or add your books to become part of the Goodreads Author Program. If you have an existing profile, GoodReads will upgrade it to an author’s profile.
    • Use the widgets provided to you as an author on your website or email signature to let everyone know you are a Goodreads author.
    • Write a blog or sync your blog page. That way, every time you post on your blog, all your friends on Goodreads will get to know you automatically. Tell stories of your writing career or your past to connect with readers.
    • Sponsor a giveaway for your book. Run a giveaway to build buzz around your book and get reviews. You can run a giveaway for a print book or a Kindle book.
    • Turn on Ask the Author for Q&As. Answer questions as they come in so that you start building a good rapport with fans. Use Status Updates to talk to your followers.
    • Join a group around a topic or genre related to your book or a group for authors. You can meet people who share similar interests as you.
    • Set public announcements and garner support from those who read them. Post your upcoming events. You can announce a time you’ll be answering questions from readers via Ask the Author or let people know if you’re signing books IRL. People who RSVP get a reminder the day before the event.
    • Share reviews of recent books you read, especially those within your genre. Try to review a book or two weekly. This keeps your name in front of the people who follow you and enhances your profile.

Community Red Flags

    1. Engaging with people who negatively rate or review your books. Goodreads is a community for all readers to express their honest opinions about the books they choose to read and shelve. Engaging with people who don’t like your book will not win you any new readers. Remember that Goodreads is a public space; other readers will see a reaction from the author and interpret it as hostile regardless of how carefully crafted the response is.
    2. Contacting members who have shelved your book or related work. They can consider it spam, which will result in Goodreads members flagging your activity for review.
    3. Mass friend requests. Goodreads is a great place to meet other book lovers. However, be sensitive to the fact that some members only want to befriend a small circle. We suggest adding other members you genuinely want to follow and interact with.
    4. Joining groups simply to promote your book. Start to engage as a reader first and measure the timing to start introducing yourself. The final action should be to connect with people who can eventually land on your page and discover your book organically. 
    5. Attempting to influence reviews of your book. 

Friendly Advice

  1. Refrain from saturating readers with publicity. Advertising is OK to a certain level, but authors and readers could disappear when you soak your page with advertising. Add distinction to your repertoire of skills instead. Be creative with how you sell yourself and take advantage of the many features Goodreads offers to help your page become one of the best.
  2. Do not link your GoodReads accounts to your Social Media platforms. If you are counting on the support of your inner circle, then GoodReads might have a problem with that. If you link your Goodreads account to your Facebook, for example, Goodreads reviews left by your Facebook friends may need to be more usable on Amazon and the Kindle marketplace since they are connected to you.
  3. Do not use an email connected to your Kindle Direct Publishing or Amazon shopping account.

Do you want to learn more about GoodReads?

Check the links below for additional information about the benefits of GoodReads:,as%20you%20want%20to%20be.


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