In order to get an Audiobook off the ground, so to speak, it helps to have honest, non-biased reviews. It's important for people who are browsing for their next book to see what others think, so that they can make an informed decision. Personally, it's rare that I will buy a book with no reviews, so why would I expect the everyday Audible or iTunes listener to buy without a review either. Knowing this, I recognise that as narrators, we have the perfect community to share promo codes with & in exchange, get some much needed early reviews. So, I requested a promo code from fellow narrator Kyle Tait & submitted my review a couple of days ago. Here it is:
My Review of Deep Night: Detective Harlan Ulrich, Book 1:
I have to say I really enjoyed this book. I listen whilst driving mainly so if I get distracted with driving and miss something critical, I can lose interest. Not with this story though, I came to like the main character, Ulrich, more as the story moved on but he appeared quite cantankerous at the start. The story isn't complicated and doesn't send you off on a wild goose chase for no reason, it's realistic (if the supernatural can be realistic) and seemed to hold my attention really well. As for the narrator, he grew on me, all his characters sounded individual, his words were clear and he really engaged me into the story. I would definitely listen to the next book as long as Kyle Tait is narrating.
Kyle was pleased with the review and so far, I am the only UK based listener who has reviewed it. Therefore, a review was much needed to help boost sales in the UK. ACX provide more than enough free promo codes and we can use these to promote our new releases in a number of ways. Here are the way's I have used them so far:
1) Friends & Family - There's nothing better than having feedback on how you have performed, so if you don't mind some honest feedback (and won't fall out with anyone), you could ask your family & friends to have a listen & leave you a review. Luckily my husbands parents are avid book readers and were happy to try out an Audiobook for the first time.
2) Narrator Exchange - Most narrators will be offering free codes via social media as well as other sources for their new audiobook, upon release. In exchange for a review, they are more than happy to share a code with you, and perhaps one day they will return the favour :) I strongly suggest you make some connections with other narrators, not only for helpful reviews but because it can be a little lonely working at home all day and they keep you company.
3) Audiobook Listeners - Using your social media network, you can promote your audiobook direct to listeners from Audible & iTunes. You need to follow book enthusiasts and hope they follow you back. For example, in Twitter you can search a hashtag for #audiobookblogger or #audiobookreviewer once there, click on a persons profile and then see who follows them. You'll easily notice which are the right people to follow. They might use the word 'books' in their @ handle, like @zoebookaddict or you may see their profile says 'book lover'. This is your target audience, as well as book reviewers, book clubs, the list goes on...
4) Subscription Services - I wanted to do everything organically, hoping that I have enough reach across the #twittersphere & #instasphere to get enough people to go buy my Audiobook. Alas, with relatively unknown authors & narrators, you aren't on the radar. And so I reached out to https://audiobookboom.com/ This company, based in the US, have a following of listeners who sign up to listen to your book for free (via a promo code), in exchange for reviews - again honest reviews! So this week I have given it a try before I buy. I had around 15 people ask for Promo Codes (must be US) and they have all redeemed them and now I sit back and await the reviews. The site says you should expect at least 25% to review your book on www.audible.com & should you not get any, you can report the listeners for not reviewing! The site also promote your Audiobook on Facebook so you should expect some exposure there too. Assuming I have reviews in over the next few days, my Blog next week will focus on using the service and if it has had any impact on sales. I am very intrigued.
Until next week,