Got a $0 book marketing budget? No fear! Book bloggers can help you reach your audience without breaking the bank.
What is a book blogger?
A book blogger is someone who will read your book (in ebook or print form) and write an honest review on their blog and/or social media.
Most book bloggers do this for free because they love reading. However, when some book bloggers have accumulated thousands and thousands of followers, they’ll usually charge a fee. And that’s okay and well deserved (getting just one photo of your book on an bookstagrammer's account can be huge). However, you can focus on the book bloggers who do not charge when you first get started.
Why should I pitch my book to them?
1. Because it’s completely free if you choose bloggers who do not charge.
2. Because it’s an outstanding way to get better visibility by using their bookish community.
3. Because the book bloggers’ readers trust them, so they will click that Amazon order button with hardly any coercion.
What would happen if just one Instagram book blogger told her 50,000 fans about your book? What if 10% saw that post? Then 5% who saw it bought it on launch day? Now imagine if you pitched your book to about 20–40 bloggers per month. Wow!
Don’t believe me?
Meet S. D. Hendrickson, romance author from Tulsa, Oklahoma. When she self-published The Mason List, she had exactly one strategy: pitch to book bloggers. When the Aestas Book Blog (205,000 followers) accepted her book and posted the review on their blog, she watched as Amazon KDP sales went from 100 to 200 to 300 . . .
And you can do it too!
Where do I find them?
The first place I go to find book bloggers is Instagram. I go to the search option and type in the hashtag #bookblogger. I go through them and follow the ones I know would be interested in my genre. Depending on the genre, I can get more specific and look up something like #mommyblogger.
Get to know these book bloggers. Don’t just follow them and two seconds later pitch your book. Establish a relationship with them by liking their photos and commenting on them.
The second option is asking for book bloggers in Facebook author groups. It’s as simple as posting, “Are there any book bloggers here who read [genre]?”
Finally, you can go to these two websites to find book bloggers who review in your genre:
How do I pitch my book to bloggers?
You will use any of the platforms mentioned above and track down their email address. Usually, you can find an email address quickly by checking their website, Facebook blogger page under About, or on Instagram. If you can’t find the email address, just send the person a direct message on Instagram or Facebook and politely ask for their email address.
You can also scan their website for a review policy. If they have a review policy, you must read it. They will delete your email immediately if they see that you didn’t follow their guidelines (e.g., sent them crime fiction when they had it under “I do not read” list).
Here is an example of a pitch for nonfiction (Kim Fredrickson):
Here is an example of a pitch for fiction (Nesly Clerge):
You’ll notice that I act as a publicist for both clients. It’s okay if you don’t have a publicist. Just use this wording in first person.
When should I pitch to them?
The best time to pitch to them is about two months before your book releases, or at least before preorders start. This gives them time to read your book and write up a review. They don’t want to feel rushed.
The second best time is to pitch after you’ve launched the book so you can use any stats you have as leverage (hit Amazon bestseller ranking; sold X amount of copies; received influencer endorsements).
Have you ever considered using book bloggers to gain more visibility and boost sales for your book? What tips and tricks do you have?
Don't want to do all of this on your own? Hire me as your publicist.
An expert editor, seasoned writer, and author-centric marketer, Shayla Raquel works one-on-one with authors and business owners every day. Her blog posts have been featured on popular websites like The Book Designer and Positive Writer. She is the author of the Pre-Publishing Checklist and her novel-in-progress, The Suicide Tree. She lives in Oklahoma with her two dogs, Chanel and Wednesday.