Building Your Reputation on Amazon – Even Before You’re Published

Everyone knows Amazon.com is an online book store. But did you know it’s also a social networking site?

At Amazon.com, your community revolves around your profile. If you have ever bought a book at Amazon, you have a profile that you can fill in with details about yourself and your interests, and people you can befriend. If you’re an aspiring author, a beefed up profile at Amazon.com with lots of friends and related content can be a strong addition to your book proposal’s marketing plan.

Your profile page can be accessed from the “My Account” page after you log in to Amazon. The first thing you’ll want to do when you get there is add a photo. A headshot is usually preferable, but if you are planning on writing about dogs, or surfing, or recumbent bicycles, a picture of you doing a related activity is great too.

Fill in your about box and interests with as much interesting information as possible. Add your website URL as well. There’s an event calendar that you can add events to. If you are going to be at any conferences or niche related events, be sure to add them.

Next, you’re going to start browsing through book listings in your niche or genre. Review and tag as many books as you can, and while you’re going through the list, click on the names of everyone else who has reviewed those books. On their profile pages you can add them to your “Interesting People” list, and/or invite them to become your Amazon friend.

Create at least one Listmania list, and one So You’d Like To… guide in your genre or niche

Finally, participate in the forums. Scroll down on any book page in your niche or genre and you’ll find a section called “Active discussions in related forums.” In these sections you’ll find different threads in the forums that you can participate in. Answer questions and comment appropriately whenever you can. Everyone you interact with in these forums will also have profile pages, so you can add them as friends or as interesting people.

Like any social media, you will get as much out of this as you put in. But if you’re willing to put in the effort, you can build up a following at Amazon before you even have a book published.

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