1. Connect with your Goodreads giveaway winners
Goodreads giveaways are a fantastic way to improve your networking on Goodreads, especially if you can take advantage of the Kindle option and max out with 100 copies. (Learn what I really love about the new Goodreads giveaway here!)
But even if you do print books and only elect to have 10 winners, that’s 10 new readers that have now been introduced to your book. (Check out my essential Goodreads checklist.)
Be sure to send personalized notes to each of the winners, congratulating them on their win, letting them know you can’t wait to see their review and hear what they think, extend the opportunity to reach out to you directly with questions or comments as well.
I also urge you to go one step further and see what the two of you have in common on the site. Perhaps you’re a part of the same group, or you’ve both read a particular title in recent history.
Calling attention to these additional connections will guarantee you’ll stand out and leave a really solid impression that will encourage them to accept your connection.
2. Connect with superstar readers in your genre
There are definitely top readers on Goodreads and it’s pretty easy to find the ones that make the most sense for your book under the Community tab, and then People:
But as with everything, be thoughtful with your networking on Goodreads.
You can find people based on a number of different factors, and then take the time to browse their profiles, recent reviews, the books they have on their to-read shelves.
Just like buying generic likes and followers on other popular social networking sites, randomly shooting off a bunch of connection requests to users on Goodreads is equally as ineffective in the long run.
You want to build your network with people who are actually in your target reader market, and no, “women” in general doesn’t count, or even “women between the ages of 18 and 30.”
What these people are reading is more important than their user demographics so just be smart, networking on Goodreads only works with people who can really add value to your platform and may actually end up buying and reading your books.
3. Participate in groups as a fan
Sometimes you have to take off your author hat and just be a fan!
And if you’re not a fan of your genre, and don’t read and review competitors regularly, you have bigger hurdles to overcome and that’s the subject for another blog post I’m working on.
Networking on Goodreads is really quite fun when you start getting involved in genre-specific groups, because I understand how easy it is as an author to get wrapped up in your own promotion and publishing schedule, to forget what the reader experience is like.
So not only will participating in groups give you regular insight into the reader experience, it will push you to get excited about your genre and inspire your writing.
And of course once you start popping up as a regular contributor in discussions you can send connection requests and you’ll no doubt get some organically as well.
4. Use events to take your networking on Goodreads to the next level
As your connection numbers grow the events option becomes a much more lucrative tool for networking on Goodreads as well.
Start creating events for anything special you have going one:
- New pre-order
- Book release
- Limited time discount promotion
- Giveaways on your website
- Goodreads giveaways
- Live event on Facebook
- Get creative!
Just be sure your event has real value for your network, there needs to be something in it for them.
And then once you create the event you’ll have the option to share it with all your connections and add a special note – voilà – you’ve created another way to ramp up your networking on Goodreads.
5. Connect with other authors who know what they’re doing
I always say “success leaves clues” because it’s so very true.
There are a lot of authors really rocking out with their networking on Goodreads and following these authors and adding them to your network will not only pull you deeper into your genre, you’ll learn a few things as well.
I suggest going to the Browse tab, then the News & Interviews section, because these are the movers and shakers according to Goodreads, check out some authors in your genre and look into connecting:
And the more you get involved, you’ll notice opportunities might pop up.
Perhaps you and another author or small group of authors could cross-promote each other’s work or special events.
Just like networking on other social media platforms, networking on Goodreads can be really lucrative when you come up with create, mutually beneficial ways to leverage other individuals’ connections.
BONUS tip for enhancing your Goodreads giveaways
I’m always looking for ways to cross-promote books through different channels, because if you’re putting in the effort why not get the biggest bang for your time and money investment?
So I’ve started playing around with scheduling my Goodreads giveaways and discount eBook promotions on Amazon around the same time. So I end up doing more of each, and it really pays off across the board. (I use my monthly book marketing planner to help track everything, and you can download it here, free!)
Basically I’ll run Goodreads giveaways just before a discount is supposed to start on Amazon.
And this is where the connection happens: I call out the discount in the Goodreads giveaway language!
You have to be careful here, because of course Goodreads wants as many participants as possible in their giveaways, so you need to be respectful of that and not use language that makes your Goodreads giveaways compete with your discounts.
Here’s a snippet from a recent giveaway that did really well:
“…the most exciting thing to happen to time travel romance this year!
And don’t fret, if you don’t happen to win a copy this time around my book will be discounted from August 30 to September 5! Mark your calendars!”
It’s just ambiguous enough to not directly compete with Goodreads, which is only fair, but it’s enough information to send readers looking for the book once the giveaway is over.
My team and I call this milking it!
And let’s be honest, the majority of readers using Goodreads will check Amazon, especially if you’re running a Kindle giveaway.
So run with these networking tips to take your reader engagement up a few notches and test out some cross-promotions for your Goodreads giveaways and let me know what works for you! I’d love to hear your experiences in the comments!