What a great group of responders. Thanks ladies for sharing...
What seems obvious now is that the best way to understand the intricacies and mechanics of how GoodReads works for authors is to flip over to the reader side with a reader profile....
It's also a great place to keep track of authors' up-and-coming work. I only become a fan of authors I'm really a fan of and I don't expect anything in return.
Great clarification. Unfortunately, we have a very vague idea of how this works and if this just magically happens or if the author has to engage with their profile to make this happen when they put out a new book.
I friend anyone who requests it, but I do get tired of indie authors spamming my inbox with recommendations for their book, links to their book launches, fan groups etc.
I'm someone who tries really hard not to read her reviews, so my personal policy about GoodReads is that it's for reviewers, not for me
So interesting to see that your sentiment is echoed by the majority of responders here... we always read reviews and glean so much from them... especially when we are trying to decide if age, gender, race factor into who is reading the book and "getting" it more than others. Boy, those New Adult readers are harsh reviewers, but it's interesting how they'll snark on Goodreads with reviews, but not so much on your Amazon sales page, which matters much more. We're always thinking about target audience, maybe because most of our books are a bit "unusual" and not your standard solid genre mold. For example, we have one book that we're about to re-launch now that we know so much more about self-pubbing, and most reviewers are responding to the romance angle... despite the fact that it's clearly an urban fantasy book. That's interesting... and this time around, we might try to re-launch it a totally different way.
I use Goodreads more as a reader than an author. I'm a Net Galley reviewer and Goodreads is where I post my reviews.
This is super interesting. We've been successful in getting reviews through our free promos, but it's so interesting to watch the authors who are using professional venues to obtain reviews. Next week, we're going to start a thread on Netgalley for the sake of discussion...
As for getting fans, mention it to readers that you are on GR and let them know they are welcome to friend and fan you! As well, if you link your GR account to Facebook, you can get folks seeing what you read on FB and friending you on GR--although sometimes the two talk and your friends get friended on GR without you having to do anything. (Readers love to know what authors are reading and if you are reading in your genre, you can swap books, etc. which is a nice, easy, and fun way to connect.)
Again, great info. But dumb question, fundamentally, what's the difference between "fanning" and "friending"? Do you only "fan" an author when you want to follow their releases, updates from their profile, etc? And then you "friend" others in order to follow their reading lists, etc.?
I accept friend requests from pretty much anyone, but only mark a select few I actually know as Top Friends so my news feed doesn't get clogged up.
That's a great tip, RC.
As a reader I do use it, but I've started using Riffle as well and I might "phase out" Goodreads eventually as a reader.
Always on the cool cutting edge of things, BBC. Love it.