Goodreads giveaways are paid now, but to be honest, the improvements they’ve made in regards to all the benefits are totally worth adding them to your book marketing and promotion.
You get to choose between a Kindle giveaway or a print giveaway. There are benefits to both. I love doing eBook giveaways for my books, because I can do 100.
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Goodreads Giveaway Formats
Goodreads handles the Kindle distribution to winners. You can giveaway up to 100 copies, but it’s only available to authors with a Kindle Direct Publishing account.
The author will be responsible for shipping print copies to winners, but they’ll get to sign them, write a personalized note, and include a special treat or bonus swag. There are lots of options for doing something really brand-centric.
This option is available to any author with a Goodreads account.
Customizing Giveaways for your Book Marketing and Promotion
When you set up your giveaway, there’s a lot that you can customize: how long you want it to run for, how many copies you want to give away, the description, etc.
The length of your giveaway can be inspired by a few factors, but we encourage you to keep in mind the number of books you’re giving away. For example, if you’re giving away 5 print copies, running it for a month is a bit excessive.
However, if you’re giving away 100 Kindle editions, a month could make sense. Keep in mind your book ends up on the to-read shelf for EVERY person that enters, so the longer your giveaway runs, the more entries you’ll get, and the more shelves you’ll end up on.
But again, keep it within reason.
Your Book Description Matters
Make sure your description stands out.
Do NOT simply paste in the description on Amazon. Lead with an industry review if you have one. This is a time to SELL YOUR BOOK.
Tap into your elevator pitch for inspiration as well.
Once Your Giveaway is Created
Once your giveaway is created you’ll have a unique URL where it lives, save that!
You should always create a Goodreads event for your giveaway. Once you create an event, you get to send the invite to everyone you’re connected with on Goodreads.
Promoting Your Giveaway
Of course, you should be promoting the giveaway on your social, on your blog, and even in your newsletter. There are likely a lot of people you’re connected with elsewhere that you’re not connected to on Goodreads yet. This is a great way to link all those connections.
After The Giveaway
After the giveaway, spend some time connecting with the winners. Send them connection requests and be sure to personalize the message, reminding them they recently won your book and you can’t wait to hear what they think.
Invite them to reach out to you with any questions, feedback, or comments. Remember, building your connections means building your Goodreads mailing list – so anytime you create Goodreads events for future promotions both on and off Goodreads, you have that many more people to notify.
If you give away print copies, we encourage you to message those individuals once the books have gone out. Taking that extra step shows you’ve really got your head in the game, and it shows you care about your readers and fans.
At the end of the day, the investment in a Goodreads giveaway is 100% worth it if you’re willing to support that investment with a few other free marketing strategies and smart, thoughtful networking.
I hope we’ve inspired you to get on Goodreads, if you weren’t already on the site.
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I have read that by doing the Goodreads Kindle giveaways, the “also read” gets messed up because they are all sent from the same account. So you may end up with “also reads” that are erotica when you write cozy mysteries. Maybe that is no longer the case? If it is, it’s a huge negative.