Showing posts with label publishers. Show all posts
Showing posts with label publishers. Show all posts

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Blogger Transparency: Should You Share Your Statistics on Your Blog? | Book Blogging Tips (#58)

I've been thinking a lot about this lately. Many bigger bloggers share their statistics and it's seemingly ONLY people with follower counts in the 4 or 5 digits. 

Personally, I feel conflicted about openly sharing my statistics, but I appreciate and love it when other people share theirs. So should we all?


Why would you even do that?

It definitely helps people who are looking to work with you and your blog professionally.

Whether it's:
  • authors seeking reviewers
  • publishers looking to add someone to their mailing lists
  • companies who are interested in having you review a product
  • anyone interested in advertising with you
  • anyone interested in professional collaboration

If you have your statistics openly displayed on your blog, people immediately know whether it makes sense to work with you. Let's not kid ourselves, people always say stats don't matter when talking about blogging, but we all know deep in our hearts that they do. Especially when we're talking about professional business with companies/authors/publishers who are actually earning money for what they're doing. 

As for individuals - I always like to see statistics because it makes it easier to categorize myself. To know how big my blog is in comparison to others. It's always great to be aware of the reach you have. 

But putting yourself out there like that isn't everyone's cup of tea. It's not necessarily a necessity to be completely transparent with your statistics. I absolutely understand it when people say they don't want to. Especially when you're still a small blogger you might hesitate to openly display how many clicks you get - it's easy to say "hey, no big deal" when you get 200k hits per month. 

So when is it TRULY necessary?

I think there is not really a necessity at all. You're not being dishonest by declining to openly show your stats to everyone. It's a personal matter after all and a personal decision. I had mine displayed for a hot minute, but felt very iffy about it all. 

You can always send out that information in private to people who are interested in working with you. Don't let anyone ever tell you, you have to do anything when it comes to blogging. Your blog, your rules.


Do you share your statistics on your blog?

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Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Unsolicited Review Copies: Reviewing Them, Ignoring Them, What To Do With Them | Book Blogging Tips (#51)




If you're receiving unsolicited review copies, you're probably already an established blogger and at least know somewhat what you're doing.

While it's a fantastic thing to receive the newest releases in the mail, it can get pretty overwhelming very easily.






Do you have to review them?

There are bloggers who get unsolicited copies sent to them every month, from many different publishers. If you're one of those people, it's virtually impossible to read all these books, even if you don't have a day job.

Personally, I think every single review copy you receive, whether unsolicited or not, is a privilege.

You have to consider that these copies cost more money to print than regular copies and are sent out to publishing professionals. If you've made it to that circle of people, you better act like a professional!

Meaning
  1. no selling
  2. no hoarding
  3. no requesting more ARCs when you're already drowning in them. 
Disagree if you want, but also know that misbehavior does not go unnoticed. Again, these books are a privilege that not every blogger has.

I don't believe that unsolicited copies all have to be reviewed. If you didn't request it, you don't have to review it in my opinion, though giving even just a little back in terms of maybe posting a picture of it or talking about it on social media is simply common courtesy.

If you don't want to read a review copy for what reason ever or don't have the time to read it-

Here are some alternatives:

  • Give the book to another blogger. Some review copies that I have received actually say on them that they are meant to be given to other bloggers. That way the publisher still gets "something" in return, even if it's only the exposure from being featured on another blog.
  • Contact the publicist. If you're receiving an overwhelming amount of books that's absolutely impossible to review, the smartest way to go about this is to contact the publicist responsible and just tell them you appreciate it, but don't have the time to review these books.
  • Host giveaways. While review copies are NEVER under no circumstances allowed to be sold (you can actually get sued for this), giveaways are a-okay. Check back with the publisher if you're unsure, some publishers don't want any ARCs circulating before the release date. 
  • Post pictures. If you're not able to post a review, just featuring the review copies you've received in a meme, (In My Mailbox, Stacking the Shelves etc.), or posting pictures on instagram or tumblr does the job. You'd still aim for managing to read them, since that's the reason why you got them in the first place.

What do you do with your unsolicited review copies?


More on review copies in my Book Blogging Tips Series



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Friday, November 11, 2016

More Generous Ratings For Indie Books? | Book Blogging Tips (#46)





I've noticed recently that I tend to give indie books better ratings than traditionally published ones. 

I wish I could say it wasn't intentional, but I think it is. Here's why I rate indie books more generously.


First, let me slam-dunk your prejudices in the trash. 
  • Quality is absolutely not an issue. If you think indie books are low quality, sorry, you just probably don't have a qualified opinion here. Of course, with EVERYONE being able to publish books these days, there's a fair share of bad writers. It's logical. But condemning everyone because of a handful of bad books you read is a little... narrow-minded. That's like saying I don't read Hachette books anymore because I didn't like the only 3 of their books that I've read. 
  • Because you don't hear about them, they're bad? Especially if you sign with a small publishing house or are self-published, there is near to no way to get the word out about your book the same way you'd be able to if you were published under the Big Five. 

TL; DR - here's why I rate indie books more generously than traditionally published books:

#5: Indie publishing is hard, competitive, and authors rely on reviews and ratings. 
A Big Five author won't give a rat's ass about my one star review, but bad reviews can crush indie authors' sales. Don't be unnecessarily mean. When in doubt, give one star more than fewer.

#4: Indie authors do their publicity themselves. 
Every review copy sent out goes out of their own pocket. Especially when you received a physical copy, that's the author straight up taking their own money, relying on your review. Writing a fair critique is the LEAST you can do.

#3: Collaboration with indie authors is more personal. 

Often the authors themselves reach out to me, asking me to review their book. If I'm going to write a bad review, I BETTER know what I'm talking about. I better have reasons for every single negative thing I say, because guess what - the author's at the other end of the receiving line and they sure as hell will realize when I'm being a dick for no reason.

Yeah, I have to admit, sometimes I'm a little hard on traditionally published authors and nitpicking a lot. Among other things, a reason for this is probably that I'm not face to face with the author.

#2: There are people who refuse reading indie books. 

A few bloggers I (used to) admire actually support this. Oddly enough, none of them has ever dared to state why. Let's prove em wrong.

#1: People think indie books are all shit. 

And honestly, if the one thing I can do to help ERASE this stupid, ignorant stigma, I'll do it via good reviews. I would never rate a book that's bad, positive just because it's indie, don't get me wrong - but I'll do my darn best to promote the crap out of every wonderful indie book I encounter.


Are you more generous with your indie ratings?

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Thursday, February 11, 2016

Do You Actually Review Unsolicited ARCs? | Book Blogging Tips (#38)


When I first started out, being sent ARCs by publishers seemed to be the holy grail of blogging. I mean, if you look at all those pictures on the instagram pages of the big name book bloggers and booktubers, you can't help but think like this.

What always struck me as weird is the fact that some bloggers get sent DOZENS of books every month. 

As a fairly quick reader, I read about 8 books per month (that's a good month for me!). I can hardly imagine how anyone could possibly read more than 20 books a month EVERY month. If you do, I salute you.


Let's be honest: Who even reads all those ARCs?!

One of my favorite booktubers, Abookutopia publishes book hauls every month, showing about 10+ ARCs by publishers that have been sent to her unsolicitedly. 

I get that it's a business and they're already profiting from the fact that a big name blogger like her only mentions these books briefly in her videos or shows the covers quickly. I hardly believe she read even half of these books. It's just a business transaction, nothing more and I don't blame her for doing this. It's basically impossible to read all those books, especially because she states all the time that 90% of them are unsolicited. I would have a panic attack, because I'd feel like I actually had to read all of those to be honest.

Most people who get the same amount of ARCs hardly are able to read those unless they have some kind of super power. To me, it just defeats the purpose of ARCs to just hoard them and show them off. For the publishers this might be still a good way to advertise, to just have their books appear on instagrammers' pages and in booktuber's videos. Of course the exposure on a big name's page is much bigger than the exposure they'd get from my blog for example.

Technically, you're under no obligation to review them

You didn't agree to reviewing ARCs that were sent to you unsolicitedly, it's only a matter of politeness if you do. In Germany things works a little differently and you hardly ever get sent anything that you didn't request, so I didn't have to deal with that problem personally, but it seems very stressful.

Personally, I would never let a single book that is sent to me go without a review, but if you're getting sent dozens of books every month, it's pretty understandable that you can't review them all. Let alone read them all.


Do you get unsolicited ARCs? Do you write reviews for them/ have the time to read them?

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Thursday, January 28, 2016

When To Post ARC Reviews: Pros and Cons of Posting On Release Day or Months Before | Book Blogging Tips (#36)





What I do is usually very simple. The second I get the ARC, I read it and then queue the review to be published exactly on the release day, or if I can't, I schedule it for the day before.

However, recent discussions about this with other bloggers made me contemplate whether there's a better method.

Usually it's expected of you to have the review ready and online by the time the book is released. That's why you're getting the ARC, to deliver instant reviews even when the book has only been out for half a second.

When you get an ARC, you usually have three(ish) options when to post the review

1) The second you finish (~3-6 months before release)

+ Even if that's months ahead, you already got it out of the way
+ There's no chance you'll forget about the book
- Literally nobody cares about a book that'll be published in a couple of months time
- Honestly, not even if it's Rick Riordan or Richelle Mead, one week after the announcement people stop caring = ZERO publicity profit
if somebody sees the review and wants the book, they can't get it yet. 

2) Close to the due date (~a week before release)

+ everybody knows the book is coming, everybody's searching for early reviews
+ traffic!!!
+ simultaneously early enough to create buzz around the book (publicists likey), but also late enough to make the release seem very close and get people excited (readers likey)
- if somebody sees the review and wants the book, they can't get it yet. 
- you'll have to plan this one ahead, either read the book right away and queue the post, or pray to God you'll make it in time

3) Last minute (on release day)

+ everybody knows the book is out, hello traffic
+ if you got somebody interested in the book, they can get it right away
- again, either queue or pray
- you won't be able to get people interested in the book before its release

4) #yolo

Of course you still have the "screw it" option, where you just post the review whenever. But in order to do that you really have to have your life/TBR together enough to manage to keep track of all your review copies. Because nothing's worse than requesting an ARC and not delivering a review at all. Don't do that. 

When in doubt:

Ask the publicist that you've been in contact with and don't listen to people online who are probably working with different publishers and publicists that also have different expectations of you.



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Friday, September 11, 2015

How to Scare Potential Readers Away With Your Theme | Book Blogging Tips (#16)

If you're a little like me, your theme is probably the bane of your existence as well.

I'm constantly editing it, never quite getting it right and spend days trying to edit a single thing, but then end up not liking the end result.

You can have the best content in the world, when your theme is terrible, you'll never get the recognition you deserve.


Here are fourteen DON'Ts in regards to your theme.


! CAUTION: Sarcasm ahead ! 


1. Pop-Ups and Ads Wherever You Can.
Yeah, ads are always a great idea if you're looking to earn money with your blog. You should totally start advertising early on, even if you get only a hundred views per month.
The more ads the better. Make sure to remind your readers to subscribe to your email newsletter every five minutes with a pop-up, they'll be very grateful for the reminder.

2. Low Contrast Script and Background
Pastel colors, am I right? How about a beige background with a light pink script? Looks fashionable. Who cares whether you can read the posts, as long as it looks pretty.
Aesthetics over content all the way.

3. Show ALL THE BADGES
Yes you're a proud member of Team Damon, Team Edward, Team Maxon, Team Ash, Team Stark, Team Patch, The Shadowhunters and so many more! Make sure to add all your fandoms so your readers will know what you love to read about.
Don't forget to add a badge for every tag award you've ever gotten.

4. Avantgarde Themes
There's a reason standard blogging templates are so frowned upon. Show us your graphic designer skills and give us a theme filled with animations and giant pictures. It has to be a challenge for the reader to find your posts, else they aren't worthy of reading them anyways.

5. A LOT of Friendship Buttons
Show off all the friends you made in the blogging world. Don't only put three or four on your site. It's like facebook, the more friends you have, the cooler you are.

6. Sidebar Taller Than You Are
The more widgets the better. It's not cluttered, there are a lot of options for the reader to explore!!

7. List All Authors and Publishers That Support You
It's very important to make sure that you thank all 89 authors and publishers that sent you a review copy. It's even more important when you've been blogging for ten years. You can't miss a single name. Don't put it on an extra page either, it has to be on the front page.

8. Typos + No Proofreading
Were all humans. Typos make you evn more symptaehtic. Prof reading just takes up mroe time. Let's get it all online quiasly. its not liek you can´t undesrtand what I#M typing is it

9. Release Day Widgets. All of Them.
The more, the better. I mean, your readers have to know what you're currently waiting on. Don't let them know in a post. It's all about visualization.

10. Super-slim Themes
The slimmer the better. That's the 2015
look. If your sentences all have to be
shortened and look like haikus now
then you're absolutely doing it right.
Scrolling is a form of exercise as well,
you're doing your readers a favor
They should pay you for that service if
you think about it.

11. Stop Formatting
It's only a waste of time. Don't even use paragraphs. You'll save a lot of time and will be able to dedicate that time to reading more.

12. Did Somebody Say Comic Sans?
You don't know what people are talking about, it's not like you're running a business blog. Comic Sans in bright yellow is a perfectly acceptable font to run a blog in your spare time. Everybody calm down.

13. Animations and Customized Cursors
Come on, who doesn't want those back? Remember how awesome our myspace pages looked? You're aiming for the nostalgic look and it's working. Maybe add some glitter or falling snow while you're at it.

14. Unreadable Colors
Seriously, if they'd take the time and effort to read your posts, they'd be able to. It's not like your writing for the uneducated masses. Your blog posts are important and making a difference so it can't be that hard to highlight them with a right-click if they have problems reading them, jeez.




Always remember: Blogging isn't an exact science.

Even if you have some or most of these things on your blog, who cares? It's still your blog and it has to look pretty to YOU! I'm sure there are a lot of people who think my theme is absolutely terrible. To each their own, my friends.


I hopĆ¼e this could help you out a litlle and nyou know now aht not do when you're wiring a blog post Obviously everyone's approaches are different. Team EdwwarD!!



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