Book Discovery: Fitting the Pieces Together

Otis ChandlerEvery second, two books are discovered on Goodreads, the largest site for readers and book recommendations. What must happen to get a book to that magical moment when a reader sees it and says “I want to read this”?

In his keynote address to the 2012 PubWest Conference, Otis Chandler, CEO of Goodreads, explains why there’s no silver bullet for book discovery, though there are best practices that publishers can incorporate into their promotional plans.

PubWest Logo“At Goodreads we look for the serendipitous book experience that’s not found on online booksellers’ sites,” noted Chandler, according to a report in Publishers Weekly. “Author involvement is very important.”

Goodreads proclaims its mission “is to help people find and share books they love. Along the way, we plan to improve the process of reading and learning throughout the world.” The online site was launched in January 2007 and now has more than 13 million members who have added more than 430 million books to their virtual “shelves.”

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2 Responses to “Book Discovery: Fitting the Pieces Together”

  1. Dave from eSensible November 13, 2013 at 3:24 am #

    I find that hard to believe. For any book (/publisher) to get their work seen on Goodreads they must have a fair amount of marketing clout behind them. Whether that’s word of mouth, paid marketing, or some clever viral marketing, it must still take effort.

    Let’s just say I’ve written a book, something on a niche subject like Life in the Oil & Gas industry, a post-humorous tale, then how would I get that noticed on a website like Goodreads? Not easily, as everything’s against me. It’s a niche subject, so I start off with a very limited audience. No chance of word of mouth, little feasibility of paid marketing, but it may still be a very very good read…!


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