blogging books

Make Me Click On Your Review

July 9, 2017
There are so many reviews out there, that it can be hard to sort the overly bias ones from the completely objective ones – and as readers, we need something in the middle. I don’t read too many reviews for books I don’t have any interest in reading, but I make exceptions (as do we all). Here are some techniques to make your reviews more clickable.

 Make it personal. There are so many reviews that I start reading, only to realise that all the writer is doing is summarising the plot. Sometimes, yeah, this can be effective. Maybe the book was confusing, or the blurb completely misrepresented what was going on. But seriously? Most of the time this is not needed. Talk about what made the book so brilliant to you, not what your readers might want to hear. If you think the general public would love something about this book, but you don’t, write that down! Tell us why you didn’t like it. If you loved something controversial about this book, scream about it! Look at both sides, weigh them up against each other and let the readers come to their own conclusions. Don’t retell what everyone else before you has, make your review unique.

Come up with a creative title. Let’s use The Roanoke Girls as an example. The title ‘A Review of The Roanoke Girls by Amy Engel’ doesn’t really do it for me. Something that does catch my attention is ‘The Roanoke Girls scarred me for life’ or ‘This Book Messed Me Up | The Roanoke Girls by Amy Engel’. Please keep in mind that I haven’t actually read this book (it’s a work in progress), but it’s titles like these that made me want to read what other people thought about it! I’ve now added it to my TBR shelf on goodreads, and am planning on looking for it whenever I go to a book sale. Kudos to those people who introduced this book to me

Don’t bully the author or the people who like the book. If I see any sort of cyberbullying in someone’s review, it’s an instant click away. I get it, maybe the book was shit. Maybe it was problematic – but calling the author a whole bunch of swear words, doesn’t make it any better. In fact, it makes you problematic. Just because something is terrible, doesn’t mean you get to be terrible in return. Just because you thought something was completely stupid, doesn’t mean the people who liked what they read are also completely stupid. Making blanket statements like that is not only unnecessary, but can often repel readers instead of make them want to keep reading.

 

Have a nice cover picture. I tend to get most of my reading material from Bloglovin’ which might not be that great of an idea, but what that means is that the image of your post is front and center. Guess what? If it’s just a picture of a cover, taken from goodreads and stuck on the front of your post, I’m way less likely to read it. Why? I’m not entirely sure. Maybe because it seems like it’s less personal. Maybe it’s because it appears as though minimal effort has gone into the post, and so I don’t want to waste my time reading it. Or maybe it’s because it feels generic. Whatever it is though, I don’t click on those posts.

 

Taking your own photo, or creating your own graphic draws my attention. It makes me look a little more carefully at your post, because it’s unique. How many other people do you think have placed [book name] alongside your plants or your pet cat? None. That’s what makes it all the more interesting. When the pictures are personalised, you feel as though the review is going to more personal and therefore more relevant to you. You’re actually getting someone speaking through the screen, as opposed to regurgitated sentences that really don’t mean anything.
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I’m in no way a professional on this sort of thing, and this is all of my own opinion. What makes you click on a review?
Fleur xox
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No Comments

  • Reply Breeny's Books July 12, 2017 at 9:56 pm

    This is definitely an interesting post, especially since I post 3-5 book reviews on my blog per month. I’ll definitely keep some of your points in mind as I go forward and write and post more reviews! Awesome post!

    I’m new to blogging and book reviewing, and I was wondering if you had any tips for newbie bloggers and book reviewers.

    If you have the time, please check out my blog @breenysbooks. I’d love any feedback. Have a wonderful day.

    • Reply Fleur @ Fleur Henley July 12, 2017 at 11:16 pm

      Thank you for checking out my post! Being pretty new (I haven’t quite found my style yet) at this myself, I don’t think that I’m the best person to advise you. I will say that pictures definitely help people find your blog though! I’m on my way over to your blog right now “D

      • Reply Breeny's Books July 12, 2017 at 11:50 pm

        Thank you! It’s always awesome meeting another fellow newbie book blogger. Have a great day!

  • Reply Angela @ Angel's Guilty Pleasures July 21, 2017 at 10:53 am

    Thank’s for the post.

  • Reply pavedwithbooks July 24, 2017 at 6:00 pm

    I find it hard at times to make reviews appealing, so it’s interesting to know what makes other people want to read them! I tried coming up with creative titles for my reviews before, but they ended up taking about as much time as writing the actual post 😛 I usually click on reviews of books that I either want to read, or have heard about before, so titles and graphics don’t matter as much to me. They can help though!

    • Reply Fleur @ Fleur Henley July 31, 2017 at 7:04 pm

      Ah yes, unfortunately it can be hard to come up with titles sometimes! When that happens I generally try and focus on the content instead. That way if someone is clicking on the review because they’re interested in the book, I can be of as much help as possible. Personally, perhaps it’s because I post a few reviews myself, I try and read more reviews of books that I haven’t heard of. Whether it’s to support the blogger or find something new to read, titles and graphics always encourage me to click on the post. Thanks for popping by!

  • Reply fairydancer221 July 31, 2017 at 7:33 am

    I’ve questioned doing this. What brings me up short is
    1. That I want the book title and author in the title of the post. I like your example of how to make that work.
    2. I have also thought about taking my own photos of books for the review, but library books don’t take the best photos. I mostly worried about that over a potential copyright issue. Then again, I know some books like Six of Crows have black-edged pages. I would like to show that, which cover images on Amazon and Goodreads don’t show.
    I will take your ideas into consideration and experiment as I write reviews in the future.

    • Reply Fleur @ Fleur Henley August 2, 2017 at 8:22 pm

      Aw thank you, I’m glad that my example was helpful! While the stickers on library books might make it a little harder to come up with good photos, I’m certain that good photos can be taken with them. Countless people have library hauls in which they showcase all of the books that they have recently borrowed from the library.

      I wouldn’t worry about copyright strikes on photos that you have taken. As long as you aren’t posing the entire manuscript to go along with it, pictures of books are perfectly legal. There are thousands to millions of instagram accounts dedicated just to books! I hope that I was able to provide some help 😀

  • Reply July Wrap Up 2017 – Fleur Henley July 31, 2017 at 8:30 am

    […] Make Me Click On Your Review […]

  • Reply Cass, Words on Paper (@cc9309) July 31, 2017 at 11:49 am

    I started book blogging back in 2010. Let me tell you, it was SO MUCH DIFFERENT BACK THEN! There was no bookstagram, no booktube, and now it seems that the “hip” book blogs out there do their own graphics and are super creative on the uptake. I’m happy with where my own blog is, although it might not get 10+ comments per review, I think I get a respectable amount. For me, it’s not about the views, but more simply about writing out my own thoughts so that my mind is not such a mixed-up jumbly mess! So I blog more for that, rather than for popularity or the clicks. I know this is kind of against what your blog post is about, but yeah.
    I’m in awe of those book bloggers who actually have the time to do all that extra stuff! Working, studying and trying to have some sort of social life, ON TOP of reading . . . and you also want me to take super fancy photos of my books for the reviews?! I honestly don’t even know how even. Must be magic!
    That said, I really like the look of your blog, and I look forward to reading some goodies in the future. 🙂
    Cass @ Words on Paper

  • Reply Monthly Wrap-Up: July 2017 – Cat on the Bookshelf August 3, 2017 at 10:13 pm

    […] a different note, Fleur Henley tells us to make her click on our reviews. One of the hits she gives is to write a creative title. I have thought about this. Do you guys […]

  • Reply Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction August 30, 2017 at 10:21 pm

    I think this is great advice, but honestly I just don’t always have the time to follow it. Lately I’ve been trying to come out with better titles for my book reviews, though, because I do think a catchy title brings people in. I make graphics for all my non-review posts, but I don’t manage it for the reviews, and I don’t see that changing anytime soon. But I think it’s a great way to catch people’s attention if you have the time!

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