Writers know it. Readers know it. Traditional publishers know it. And Self-Publishing Relief knows it too: Good reviews sell books. In an industry that typically sees breakout books rise to stardom through word-of-mouth book sales, what people are saying about your self-published book can be a huge factor in its success. So how can you maximize your book review quotes to drive sales?
You need to know how to spot a good quote when you see it.
What Makes A Great Review Quote (Or Blurb)?
Anytime someone says something nice about your book, you might want to shout it to the rooftops! But there is a hierarchy of reviewer quotes in the publishing industry that you should consider when deciding which of your quotes will get top billing.
Great book review quotes aren’t flat and expected. Instead, share-worthy reviews promise readers an emotional journey or a surprising revelation—using only a few words (similar to great query letters). The best book review quotes tend to come from well-known magazines, celebrities, best-selling authors, and bloggers/book review sites with large followings. Paid book reviews also carry some weight (like those from Kirkus Reviews). And having a lot of four- and five-star reviews on sites like Goodreads will also help to sway readers (Example: “Over 500 five-star reviews on NameOfWebsite!”).
The book review quotes that typically aren’t as effective are quotes from individual, non-professional readers that are posted on book retail websites like Amazon.
How To Best Use Your Book Review Quotes And Endorsements
Keep review quotes short—very short. Few people who are visiting your author website or social media profiles will take the time to read looooooong review quotes. In fact, seeing a big block of text will probably cause visitors to bounce off your website! Instead, wow your visitors with instant impact by including only the most salient phrases of your reviews. Some writers even opt to include only single words (“Exciting… Riveting…” —The Blah Blah Review).
CAVEAT: Writers may benefit from including slightly longer reviews (two or three sentences MAX) in the front pages of their published books. Why? Pages and pages of concise reviews are noticed and often carefully perused by booksellers, librarians, reviewers, and potential buyers. After all, everybody wants to read and talk about the book that everyone is reading and talking about!
Add reviews to your query letters. If you want to secure literary agent representation, include excerpts from your review quotes at the bottom of your query letter or in the text itself.
Include quotes in your author bio. Along with the traditional elements of an author bio (publishing history, a bit of personal information, etc.), consider including a very short phrase from an impressive reviewer. If possible, choose a quote that focuses on your writing in general (“a captivating storyteller who always entertains”) rather than on a particular book project.
Create a carousel of reviews for your author website. If you have several great, high-impact reviews, show them off by creating a carousel (or maybe scrolling text) on your author website. Movement gets noticed!
Brag on your business cards. Include very short review quotes or numbers of starred reviews on your business card to remind the people you meet of your growing fanbase.
How To Get Book Review Quotes And Endorsements If You Don’t Have Publishing Connections
Believe it or not, you might be able to score a fabulous book review quote from a best-selling author or a popular book reviewer—if you play your cards right!
Click here to learn how to get a book endorsement from a famous author.
Click here to learn how to get more book reviews.
Question: Do you pay attention to book review quotes and endorsements?