One of my favourite podcasts is The Geeks Guide to the Galaxy – it mostly features interviews with Science Fiction and Fantasy authors, or non-fiction authors writing about Geeky subjects – the history of D&D – that kind of thing. I recommend having a listen – if you don’t like it then at least fast forward to the end for the outro credits which encourage the listener to leave good feedback about the podcast and if they have anything bad to say, to say nothing – Tell No One!
It’s a bit of fun and a tongue in cheek way of encouraging listeners to leave reviews on iTunes, but it also illustrates the importance of reviews on social media and websites for today’s content creators. All podcasters want lots of 5 star reviews on iTunes, and all authors want 5 star reviews on Amazon. To such an extent even that some are prepared to cheat and pay for them. Recently Amazon has had to crack down on what amounted to fake reviews.
But why the stress about customer reviews? Well Amazon has created an ecosystem that is really driven by reviews and has encouraged customers to rely on reviews of other customers when making purchase decisions. Many people of course don’t bother leaving a review, so whether Amazon reviews reflect accurately the quality of a product is debatable. But in the world of Amazon, iTunes et al reviews are all important and drive products to the top of search lists and determine whether books get noticed and promoted or not.
So as The Geeks Guide to the Galaxy would say, “If You Liked One of My Books, Write a Review on Amazon – If You Didn’t Like Them, Tell No One”!!!