Writing a book recommendation list will help you sell books by doing two things...
First, it gets your book in front of readers who are a perfect match for your book.
Imagine that Bob writes a historical fiction book about the D-Day landings and a group of Canadian soldiers who go through that experience. If Bob writes a book list about "the best non-fiction books about the D-Day landings," he knows that the readers who visit that list will also be interested in his book. Or, if he writes a book list about "the best historical fiction about World War 1 and 2," he knows that readers who land on that list will also be interested in his book.
This is why it is so important that the topic/theme of your book recommendation list is a good match for your target audience. Then, anyone who lands on your list is going to be interested in your book as well. Shepherd does a lot behind the scenes to help deliver those readers to your list; you just have to know your target reader.
This can also be done by mood, feeling, and other themes. This gives you a lot of room to play with how you approach and share books with readers. You can do things like:
- The best books from a real-life astronaut (so more about you and where you are coming from)
- The best mystery books for a cold night in front of a warm fire (more mood/feeling based)
- The best books to read if you are thinking about becoming a doctor (very personal selection)
- The best romance books for a hot read on a warm beach (mood/feeling based)
If you need help, email Ben at firstname.lastname@example.org, and he can recommend some ideas and help you with this process.
Second, your book recommendations show your passion, expertise, and voice. This makes readers interested in you and your book, even though you recommend other books.
Our book recommendation format is carefully designed to give readers five great book recommendations while putting an author in front of the perfect audience for their book.
And our format shows the author’s passion and expertise for the topic/theme. This makes readers more interested in you and your book and leads to book sales. Let me prove it…
In July, Lawrence Goldstone did an amazing book list of the best books for white people to learn (just a little) about Black people. It is a great list, and I recommend you check it out.
Henry Louis Gates Jr., the famous TV host and renowned Harvard professor, loved the list and shared it on his Twitter and Facebook feeds. This resulted in tons of traffic, specifically 7,400 unique visitors who visited the page in July.
So, how many books did Lawrence Goldstone sell versus the 5 books he recommended on the list?
The author’s book sold at a ratio of 1:1 against the five other books on his list.
That means that if 500 books were sold, 250 of those books were the author’s book, and 250 of those books were the other five recommended books. This shows the power of this format as a way to connect with readers.
Just to let you know, I can only see sales made within 24 hours from Amazon. And I also don’t know how this ratio changes yet per genre or topic. I will share more data in the future as we grow and learn.
What type of conversion rate are we seeing for the author's promoted book on a book list?
I've got a long breakdown here for the conversion rate we are seeing to an author's book on their book list as that is quite good and also shows the power of this format to introduce you and your book to readers.