Tumblr Book Giveaways: What Writers Need to Know

As the owner of a business enterprise which provides book reviews and operates a book contest, I have long been aware that you can get numerous bogus competitions and reviewers out there. I have also promoted blog tours for authors, and I firmly believe that having your own blog as well as being a visitor on a person else’s blog is the best way to get the word out there about the book of yours. But only some bloggers and blogs are created the same, and worse, some are not too truthful.

Recently, I started to be aware of a new trend among bloggers to offer giveaways to the readers of theirs. Sadly, many of these purported freebies are scams, or at least, they are not totally honest or even providing whatever they say they are going to provide because of the book’s author. Following are a few guidelines and examples to follow before providing the book of yours to bloggers who are offering giveaways.

First, let’s take a look at the ebook giveaway process and what could encourage bloggers to offer a consistent book giveaway. The bloggers requests authors and usually other owners of various products to send them the products therefore they can review them. Next, they read the book or perhaps have the item as well as produce a review of the product, posting the product info on their blog. They then ask people to publish their names through some electronic form or even via email for a random design for a giveaway of the service. The system is then mailed to the winner. Seems simple enough.

But it’s actually more involved than that. The blogger isn’t going to search through all this work without getting a thing in return. Often, the blogger will post an image of the product with a link to where it may be purchased, like a web based bookstore that not only sells the product but also has a referral program the place where the blogger is given a commission on all items marketed when folks click through from the blogger’s website to the seller’s site and get the item.

That’s even reasonable and there is nothing wrong with people currently being paid for their work. The possibility of scamming and unethical behavior comes, however, in various, sometimes small, but nevertheless serious ways. Before you submit the book of yours to a blogger, the following are certain things to watch out for:

1. FTC Disclosure It is the law now that anyone who receives a profit when he or even she endorses a product must disclose that upfront. A legitimate website will have an FTC disclosure statement on it that the proprietor is getting a commission (whether through click thru or even the strong transaction by the author or product owner) for promoting the effort. Which doesn’t mean the blogger is being dishonest in offering a very good review of the product. In fact, if the FTC disclosure is present, it’s a great sign the blogger thinks in being honest about the service. If the FTC disclosure isn’t there, don’t participate.

2. Product Reviews Before you send your book to someone to review it, look at history reviews at the site. A good deal of bloggers (and book reviewers) claim that they review books when, in truth, they just copy the item description as it seems like at the author’s or even an online bookstore’s site, or perhaps they copy the back cover post and description that as an evaluation. That’s not much of a reputable book review since it does not represent the blogger’s personal viewpoint of the book and it’s an excellent sign the blogger did not even bother to read the book to discover whether it deserves being endorsed. The blogger is simply attempting to get as many products featured on the blog as you can so more percentage can be generated.

3. Multiple Copies If bloggers request over two copies of the manual, it is unlikely they really want the books for review or giveaway. It is clear the blogger might choose a book to read and then another to post on the giveaway winner. But, it’s considerably more practical for the blogger to request only one copy and then after the giveaway’s victorious one is called, demand that the author personally send the winner an autographed copy. If a blogger requests for more than two copies, it’s very likely the blogger is collecting inventory to resell perhaps to a nearby used bookstore, or maybe at a web based store, therefore generating a profit off copies of books he didn’t purchase and that the writer thought is given away.

4. Drawing Results An honest blogger operating a book giveaway is going to disclose the names of the winners, though for privacy’s sake, it might just say Amanda W., Syracuse, NY or even George T, Salt Lake City, UT. What is suspicious is not giving some indication there are winners.

If you are still uncertain whether to publish the book of yours to a blogger’s book giveaway, contact the authors of some of the previous giveaways as well as ask them whether it helped them or perhaps they ever heard from any of the readers. If the blogger is operating a reputable contest and also provides the author the message and mailing address of the giveaway winner, you can contact the individual and be confident that your book is going exactly where it should. If the blogger is mailing out the duplicates himself, you do not have proof the books are being mailed out. In fact, I have read from several authors who have participated in such freebies several times that they’ve never received a thank you or perhaps any feedback from the people who supposedly received the books of theirs. While not receiving feedback isn’t always a sign of dishonesty, once you do receive feedback it’s an indication that things are functioning as it should.

Will a book giveaway help promote the book of yours as well as present you with publicity? It might if the blog gets a great deal of traffic, of course, if the blogger really is giving out the books, you may possibly at least find one brand new fan. The blogger, of course, could perhaps tell you exactly how the website receives tens of thousands of views, and if that is true, it is good because then a lot of individuals will hear about your book, and if they are curious and do not win it within the giveaway, hopefully, they’ll buy it.

If you get scammed, you will just lose out on the costs of the several books you give away, but that said, without one wants to be scammed, so do a little research before you choose to give out your books and you can rest assured that the people whom you would like the books of yours to reach will be the people benefiting from the book giveaway as opposed to solely a blogger who is out to earn money with no ethics.

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