The Booksprout method is a paid option that you can try for free. It’s best for authors who want a full featured ARC Assistant that can take care of book distribution, review reminders, and blacklisting certain reviewers depending on your preferences (for example, if they don’t leave reviews).
Step 1: Create a Booksprout account
If you don’t have one, the first step is to create an account on Booksprout.
Step 2: Create an ARC
The next step is to create an ARC. To do so, you’ll need to follow these steps:
- Create a pen name (you only need to do this once).
- Create a book that you’d like to run an ARC on.
- Create an ARC for the book you just created.
Some tips while creating your ARC:
- Check the “Prevent freeloaders” box to ensure that anyone who has downloaded a previous ARC from you but has yet to leave a review does so before they can download this ARC.
- Make sure to enter a contact email. This will be useful if readers run into trouble with your ARC files or have another problem.
Step 3: Inform your ARC team
As with all the other methods it’s best to inform your ARC team!
Note: This step can be skipped if you’ve been using Booksprout’s reader ARC alerts feature for the pen name and have been directing readers to sign up for your ARC team via your public author page. If that’s the case, then Booksprout will automatically notify anyone who requested those alerts that you have an ARC available!
Step 4: Request reviews
Once your book is live and available for sale, it’s time to let your reviewers know that they can leave their review. Within Booksprout, head to your ARC list and find the ARC that’s ready for readers to leave their reviews on. Click the “Request ARC Reviews” button and supply the necessary information before clicking “Request Reviews.”
Readers will be notified that it’s now time for them to leave their reviews on your book and to supply a link to their review as proof to you that they did so.
Step 5: Review the reviews
As the reviews start coming in, head back to your ARC list to make sure that the reviewers have left their reviews on the proper stores and have followed any guidelines you may have put in place. If you deem any review to be unsuitable, you can contact the reviewer or silently remove them from participating in your future ARCs.
You can also see that some reviewers may have left a reason for not having left a review. These can range from “I didn’t like the book” to “family emergency” with everything in between. If a reviewer has a valid reason, you may wish to keep them on your ARC team. If they don’t you may wish to remove them.
Step 6: Manually approve reviews
If some of your reviewers are having trouble supplying their reviews through Booksprout, you can manually approve their participation. Head back to your ARC list and click on the “X copies claimed” link to see your ARC team. Search for the reviewer’s email address and click the “Mark review as complete” button. Booksprout will now treat this reviewer as one who has completed their review.
Step 7: Report pirates (optional)
If you’re concerned about piracy and are on a paid Booksprout plan, you can report and permanently block pirates from downloading your ARCs in the future. All you need to do is download a book file that you have found on a file sharing website and upload it to our pirate reporting tool. If it’s been downloaded through Booksprout we’ll silently prevent that person from ever downloading another one of your books through us.
Want to see it live and in action from a reader’s perspective? Check out how Mark Twain might have used Booksprout to get reviews on release day for one of his classic tales. Don’t be afraid to download the book and leave a review!
Throughout the whole process Booksprout has done all of the record keeping for you. Next time you run an ARC it will remember who left a review on the last one, who didn’t, who has been removed from your ARC team, who had an excuse, and more. As time goes on you can refine your ARC team so that only the ones who are participating can get advanced access to your books!