Lovelybooks

How to successfully use Lovelybooks as an author

LovelyBooks is aimed at readers who not only want to read, but also talk about the books. In addition to reviews, it is especially about the exchange with friends and reading acquaintances and also the contact directly with the author. But what options are there to become active as an author on the platform?

What is LovelyBooks?

LovelyBooks is with over 1.9 million monthly users the largest German-language book community, where not only readers but also authors and publishers exchange ideas about books. The focus is on "social reading", i.e. reading together. Readers can fill their virtual bookshelves here, share their current reading status, rate books, write reviews and apply for reader rounds. The 350,000 registered users - including 10,000 authors - post 60,000 new reviews and reading impressions every month.

As an author, you can get in touch with your readers on the platform, organise reader rounds or book promotions and advertise. In addition, the book community awards the LovelyBooks Reading Award for the best books of the year.

LovelyBooks is part of aboutbooks GmbH, a subsidiary of the Georg von Holtzbrinck publishing group. Lothar Kleiner and Sandra Dittert came up with the idea and the platform went online in 2006.

What is the target audience on LovelyBooks?

On LovelyBooks, every reader finds what they are looking for. The community is not only home to books and fans from the usual genres like Thriller, fantasy or romance novels. Humorous novels, comics and poetry books also have a place here. There are even separate sections on the website that are aimed at a specific target group. For example, the LovelyLounge for romance and erotic novels, the Crime Club for crime and thrillers, and the House of Fantasy. Livestreaming readings are also offered and readers can participate in various promotions. Even those who are specifically looking for self-publishing authors have an easy time on the platform: under the "Authors" section, there is a section for "Most Read Self-Publishers".

To find out if your target audience is represented, browse the site and members a bit. Everyone indicates here which genres interest them and you can also determine from the books and reviews posted whether there are readers for this category. Because it's mostly frequent readers and book bloggers who are represented here, their opinions and recommendations have a high value.

How do I become an author on LovelyBooks?

There are now over 10,000 authors on LovelyBooks, bringing their books directly to the attention of their target audience. To participate in the author program, register as a member with your author name. Then contact the LovelyBooks team, stating your book publication with ISBN or ASIN and your username. After a few days of verification, your profile will be activated as an author profile and linked to your books.

Author page

On your author page, readers will find all the important information about you as an author, such as your CV, a photo and further links. Maintain the profile like your other social media channels, tell exciting stories about your book and also use the "Message to readers" for a short statement that speaks directly to users. Also, don't forget to give info on other channels as well as link to your website. The author page will list your books and show the latest reviews from the community. If you have a book trailer or a welcome video, you can add it here.  

If your book does not appear on your author page, this can have various reasons. Is it perhaps not yet in the database? Then search for the ISBN or ASIN, select the Books tab and the corresponding search on Amazon. Or the book is by multiple authors? Currently, books are only assigned to one author or publisher. If you have trouble finding your book, you can always contact the LovelyBooks team.

Book page

Readers can leave their reviews on the corresponding book page. These are especially valuable on a platform like LovelyBooks, because here are mainly bloggers and frequent readers. You can display the latest reviews next to the cover.

As a rule, the book pages are created automatically and linked with the information and data from the Directory of books in print (VLB) and Amazon. If your book is not yet listed, you can add it yourself, if necessary, by setting the appropriate Amazon search in the ISBN search in the Books tab and adding the book to your library. It will then be added to the database. If you can't find it, contact support. Be sure to include the title, author, ISBN, publisher, and cover.

You can also contact the LovelyBooks team if there is missing or incorrect information in the bibliographic data, as well as if you want to upload videos about the books such as a trailer or a recording of a reading.

How do I market my book on Lovelybooks?

Apart from the fact that you can become active on the platform and exchange ideas with other authors or readers, there are special tools with book raffles and reader rounds to make readers aware of your book and to receive reviews. Once a month you can implement such an action.

LovelyBooks is a social media platform. That means it's not enough to register and wait for readers to come to you on their own. Become active, exchange ideas with users and browse through other titles. Also draw attention to yourself through reviews and recommendations of other books and don't just be present for your own actions.

Reading Lists

In a reader's round, readers meet online to share their impressions of the book, give constructive criticism and, in the end, formulate a review. And most of them are honest as hell. Before you plan your own reader's round, take a look at how other authors set them up and, ideally, take part in one yourself. Then you'll get a feel for how they work.

The raffle

Think about the time frame in which you would like to do the reading session. You should plan enough time to participate as an author, answer questions or respond to the discussion points raised. Specify the deadline for users to apply for a review copy - usually between one and two weeks - and how many books in which format there are to be won. You can use an application question to help you choose the winners. A question that fits the theme of the book, but that each user can answer individually, is ideal for this. Get inspiration from other reading rounds.  

The winners

Pick your readers based on their answer to the application question. For example, if you ask how important a happy ending is to them because your book doesn't have one, those who insist on it probably won't be happy with it. Likewise, those who expect aliens in science fiction even though your book doesn't even have spaceships. You can also ask a question that fits the theme to find out which reader might be like you or one of your characters.

However, the selection is not only about the answers, but also about the activity of the users. Look closely at the profiles. Does someone regularly participate in reading rounds, but doesn't write reviews? Then you can't expect much from that user either. Or are the book reviews quite critical? Does the reader even fit your target group?

By the way, readers who already own the book can also participate in your reading round.

The Readers' Round

In order to bring structure into the reading group, you should define different sections and subtopics within which the readers can discuss. This can be several chapters, the appearance of the book or individual characters and their development. The overall impression can also be asked at the end, as well as a subcategory with questions to the author. It's best to ask a guiding question about each section to stimulate discussion. Take part in the reactions and even if the readers don't like something: stay calm. Not everyone likes everything.

Through reader rounds, you not only achieve reviews, but also get targeted feedback on individual areas. Maybe there are a few tips that will help you with your writing? And don't get angry about negative feedback. Rather, use it as an opportunity to improve. Also, a few bad reviews won't hurt. Well-founded negative reviews make them and thus your book credible and authentic.

Anyone who has won a book is required by the guidelines to actively participate. If entrants do not comply, kindly remind them in a private message. But give them enough time. Everyone reads at their own pace. Still, don't expect everyone to report back. Some may read the book later or it may not meet their expectations. It would be great if about half - or better of course more - actively participate.

Some authors also use a reader round on LovelyBooks for beta reading, i.e. before publication. This way, you can still correct possible errors and logic gaps or improve the Voltage expand further. If readers find something unclear, you can hook in there again and clarify the passage in the book accordingly.  

Book giveaway

With a book raffle you can give away books, audio books or e-books. At best, you'll get reviews from the winners. Therefore, make sure to give away your book to readers from your target group. When creating the raffle, describe what the book promotion is about and encourage users to participate. As in the reader round, you can also ask a question or task that your applicants should answer and according to which you can possibly select the winners more easily. LovelyBooks recommends a raffle of five to 15 copies. For audiobooks and e-books, be sure to use the correct output format.  

Paid marketing

As an author, you can also use LovelyBooks to place paid advertising in the newsletter or on the landing page. You can find the paid advertising options in the Media data From LovelyBooks.

Cross-media marketing

Reviews on LovelyBooks are also for your further Marketing useful. Share good reviews on your social media channels and get attention for your book there as well. Also encourage your network, friends and acquaintances to upload book reviews to LovelyBooks. Reviews and followers attract more users. After all, if a title has a lot of good reviews, it can't be bad. For more reviews, reader rounds, book giveaways, and bloggers can be helpful.

Conclusion

With its author program, the book community LovelyBooks offers opportunities to become active as an author and to increase the attention of your own book. Due to the high number of frequent readers, you can increase your readership through the social network and bring your title into the conversation with book raffles and reading rounds.

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