Martyn Daniels who writes a good blog for the UK Bookseller Association led me to an interesting experiment by Michael Hyatt, another blogger, CEO and President of Thomas Nelson Publishers, a big religious publisher in the US. Michael had a clever wheeze: why not give away books to bloggers who agreed to write reviews and publish them on their blog….. He has had over 100 bloggers review The Faith of Barrack Obama. I wonder what difference that made to sales? The few reviews I sampled will have been very gratifying to the author and publisher. Probably also to Barrack.
Magazines don’t often get reviewed, and so its not surprising that we have had few reviews of the Exact Editions platform or the digital magazine experience on it (one recent one here). Books, on the other hand do get reviewed, and getting new books reviewed is one of the key publisher skills. As it happens we offer publishers a generous allowance of gratis subscriptions for every title in our system. Now that we are doing books we must encourage the publishers to give free subs to bloggers. Obvious really, thank you Martin and Mike.
Mike also requires that the reviewers produce a 200 word review and that they post it not only on their blog, but on the Amazon details page about the book within a month of getting the book. Exact Editions would be offering a one year subscription to a digital book, but I guess it would be reasonable for any publisher offering these review subscriptions to similarly stipulate that the review should (please) appear on the Amazon details page. Would that be disintermediating Amazon?