Authors have gotten over 100 reviews on their books using Story Cartel. Even authors with small platforms have managed to get dozens of reviews. Unfortunately, some authors only get a few reviews.
How do you get the most out of your Story Cartel launch? This guide will show you.
(And if you haven’t submitted your book yet, submit your book here.)
The Importance of Social Media In Your Story Cartel Launch
Story Cartel relies on you. If you don’t let your audience know how they can get your book free in exchange for their review, you won’t receive many reviews. The most important ingredient to your launch is your relationship with your readers.
Share your Story Cartel page on Facebook and Twitter as often as once or twice a day. You might say something like this, “Hi friends. I need your help. Get your free copy of my book in exchange for your review. Sign up here: [Story Cartel Link].” Or this: “Want a FREE copy of my book? Get it here, in exchange for your review: [Story Cartel Link].”
Write a post on your blog titled, “Why I Decided to Give My Book Away for Free,” and then link to your page from your blog throughout your launch.
You can even ask your friends and fans to share the page, too.
Do a Giveaway
As a way to encourage readers to leave their review, we help authors run a drawing for successful reviewers. Here’s how this works:
- When readers sign up, we will let them know they can win a drawing (usually one of five print copies) if they review your book by the giveaway date (usually three weeks after the start of your launch)
- After they leave their review, readers will enter themselves for the drawing here.
- On the giveaway date, we will randomly choose the five winners, sending you their contact information to fulfill their prize.
- Finally, you let the winners know they’ve won and send them their prize.
We recommend all Story Cartel authors do a giveaway to motivate readers to leave their reviews. Authors usually choose to give five print copies of their book away to successful reviewers.
If you’d prefer not to do a giveaway, that’s fine, too. While we recommend it, doing a giveaway is completely up to you.
The Seven Steps To a Successful Story Cartel Launch
There are seven parts to every Story Cartel Launch. Each phase gives you an opportunity to build your platform and enhance your connection with readers.
1. Prepare Your Readers
In the weeks before your launch, prepare for success by letting your readers know they will be able to get a free copy of your book through Story Cartel in exchange for their review. Plant the seed in their mind so that when your book is live, they will be ready to sign up.
After your book page goes live, use your platform to promote your Story Cartel page as much as you can. Share it by email, on your blog, on Twitter, on Facebook, and any other social media services you use. You might even share the page once a day. This is a great way to use social media to build your audience. We will also be tweeting and posting your book page on Facebook on our end.
Don’t forget to mention your book is free in exchange for their review. You want people to sign up with the expectation they will review the book.
3. Follow Up with Readers
As soon as you launch your book, readers will begin to sign up to receive their copy—hopefully, a lot of people. Story Cartel will automatically deliver your book to your readers and share the Amazon page with them. If you’ve decided to do a giveaway, we will also share information about your readers can enter the giveaway.
Once people start signing up, you will receive notification emails. These emails will look kind of funny, but they’re basically a way for you to keep track of how many people are signing up. You might create a filter to send them to a folder so you don’t have them flooding your inbox.
Many authors reply to each person who signs up, introducing themselves and thanking them for reading. Following up individually takes time, but it creates a personal connection between you and the reader, one that may even continue throughout your writing career.
4. Three Emails
Story Cartel will send three emails to your list of readers encouraging them to review your book:
- Email #1: Welcomes them to your list, delivers their free book, and notifies them about your giveaway.
- Email #2: About a week later, we let your readers know it’s time to review your book.
- Email #3: The day before your giveaway, we will remind your readers there’s only one day left to review the book and be entered to win a free print copy.
Sign yourself up on your book page to know what the emails people will be getting look like.
5. Check In With Your Readers
During your launch, you’re welcome to email your list on your own to check in with them and see how they’re enjoying the book. You can do this one of two ways:
- Email your entire list with a service like Mailchimp
- Email each reader individually (which is time consuming, but tends to work the best)
If you’d like to email your list, let us know, and we will send over a spreadsheet of all of your readers.
6. The Reviews Pour In
Within the first two weeks of your launch, your readers will start to review your book.
Usually, between ten to twenty percent of the people who sign up will actually review the book. This is why it’s so important to get a large group of people to sign up. For every 100 sign ups, you can expect ten to twenty reviews.
The good news is that you will get to keep your reader list to use for your newsletter or future promotions. (Of course, please don’t spam your readers, as that would hurt both of our reputations.)
7. Congratulate Giveaway Winners
On the day of the giveaway, we will randomly choose the winners and send you their email and mailing address to notify them they’ve won and send them their prize!
Don’t Believe Me?
Elora Ramirez has a small online following, but nothing compared to the authors whose books launched on Story Cartel at the same time as hers, which included an Amazon Bestselling author and an author of twenty-five books.
However, by using social media and connecting with friends who had large online platforms, Elora gave away more books than both of them. Listen to this interview with Elora to hear how she did it.
The Best Part of Writing
The best part of writing is hearing how your words have affected someone else. Story Cartel offers you the chance to connect with your readers at a very deep level. That’s why so many authors tell us how wonderful their launch was, how much they learned about themselves and their stories, and how they can’t wait to do it again.
Your story was meant to be shared, and now is the time to do it. Have fun!
Do you have questions about how to get the most out of your Story Cartel Launch? Share them in the comments below.