I have had success in using promo codes from my audiobooks to give readers, and even with an understanding that a review is expected the odds are not good at getting one. I have used three separate formats to get copies of my book out there, but still it's the proverbial pulling of teeth.
When I first produced an audiobook, I used the complimentary promo codes for press releases, contests, and reviews. Press releases were only good for one thing. It sits in my Media Kit on my website. None of the press releases I sent to local media received a response. It could be possible my Press Releases suck, but they're just not interested in local author published a book.
Contests like the AP Awards required promo codes to listen to and access the work. It resulted in sales (2) because of the requirement, but since they don't count toward royalties, I could only hope my submission wins a category to get publicity. That didn't happen either. So I resorted to 2 Audiobook Giveaway platforms. Audiobook Boom and Audiobooks Unleashed. I also joined several Facebook groups and plug my audiobooks (where it's allowed). Of the 9 requests for promo codes with Audiobook Boom, only 5 gave reviews. Two reviews were posted right away, the rest I had to track down. One didn't like the book and I was grateful I didn't get another bad review. Oh, yea that happens. This program costs $12 and my audiobook comes in a weekly newsletter and readers contact me and I send out the codes. So $12 got me five reviews.
Audiobooks Unleashed costs $10 for the basic package and no guarantee for reviews. $15 puts you in the VR spot (Verified Reviewers). I have given away 20 promo codes with no reviews to date. It's been over one month. I have no e-mails to track. Good sales but no royalties to share with my narrator. I have also paid reviewers on three separate occasions. Those reviews remain on their individual sites which doesn't help much when they aren't posted a bit more publicly. I have tweeted with links never knowing if those links are followed.
In other rants on previous blogs on #readandreview. Apppealing to the humanity of the reader to give reviews of any and all books you read, is a mission of mine. It's so important to the indie author especially. Do you know how many people read my book before it was published. (Aside from beta readers, editors, arc readers)? Very few. So, a review is a great way to show the author how much you liked the effort it took to write the novel, novella, four-book series. Some reviewers skim the description and give a review based on that. I don't recommend doing that. In fact it disturbs me.
Because I feel the need, I have created the BookGnome a play on my name. For $5 I'll ask my inner Gnome to read and give a review on the three major book review platforms. Audible, Amazon, and GoodReads. And I'll even throw in Facebook now and again in one of the groups I belong. Since I've been doing this on my own, I figure I'd try to get a little compensation while not charging too much. For more information visit my Read & Review section on the menu tab.
The Usurper King by Mercedes Rochelle
Third in the Plantagenet Legacy Series. Interesting insight into the collapse of the reign of Richard II and the making of Henry Bolingbroke, King Henry IV. The culmination of the acts in book one and the fates of those who stood against or for Richard II in the early days of his reign, come to light. An avid reader of historical fiction, I found it informative while adding a human element to these historical figures, creating an engaging read. The treachery of some and love and adoration of others make this a page turner. I read book three before book 2 'The Kings Retribution' and I'm definitely going back to fill in the gaps. If you're up on your English history, this could be considered a standalone, but I feel some of the alliances made in book one 'A King Under Siege' unfold and having a grasp on these alliances is key. I highly recommend this series and others by this author.
The Usurper King
Shirley Nomakeo received a B.S. Degree in Graphic Design from Rivier College.