Whether you're a brand new author or have many titles under your belt, there's one thing we all have in common. We need reviews! One of the most effective ways to get them is with an ARC team, but what if you don't have one? Read on for how to build one in five easy steps!

1. Start a Newsletter

If you have an existing newsletter, then you've already taken a step in the right direction. Authors without newsletters have the advantage of starting with a blank slate. Here are a few newsletter platforms that are popular with authors like you:

  1. MailChimp – MailChimp is the go-to for a lot of new authors. Its drag-and-drop method makes it easy to customize your newsletters so they fit your author brand.
  2. MailerLite – MailerLite is slightly more user-friendly than MailChimp. It also offers a more budget-friendly price point. And like MailChimp, it offers a similar drag-and-drop method.
  3. Active Campaign – If you want a newsletter that can do it all, then you need ActiveCampaign. It's got all the bells and whistles and a cherry on top–but be prepared to pay for those extra services.

2. Create a Freebie

Now that you know how you'll send your newsletter, where do you get subscribers? If you give readers a freebie for signing up for your newsletter, they will subscribe. There is a small portion of readers who will take their literary loot and immediately unsubscribe, but you may be pleasantly surprised at the number of bookworms who stick around.

3. Decide on a Distribution Method

You know how you're sending your newsletters and have written a freebie, but how do you get it into the hands of readers? Author pal, let me introduce you to BookFunnel. In their own words, “BookFunnel is an author service that specializes in ebook and audio distribution, sending ARCs, and creating tools that save indie authors time and sanity.”

Once you've obtained a BookFunnel membership, which starts at a very reasonable annual rate, you can join group promos for authors—which are one of the free perks that come with your BookFunnel membership! You can submit your freebie and watch your subscriber list grow.

4. Connect With Your Subscribers

Now that your newsletter has some subscribers, it's time to start connecting with them. You don't always have to (and really shouldn't) spend all your time talking about your books. You can check out our “Top 5 Things Readers Want from Author Newsletters” article for more suggestions.

The reason for connecting with readers before your ARC is ready to send to them is that you want readers to like you. Readers are more likely to trust people they like, and do you know which author's books they buy? That's right. It's the authors they trust.

5. Send Out Those ARC Books

If you've achieved the previous four steps, then you're ready to send out those ARC books! You may be wondering how you're supposed to send books to a large group of readers without breaking the bank.

The good news is that you can also use BookFunnel to send out ARC copies of your books to your newsletter subscribers! Here's another bit of good news. Whenever readers have trouble downloading their ARC copy, BookFunnel handles all of the customer service issues. That's worth its weight in gold!

Are You Ready to Build Your ARC Team?

So, are you ready to build your ARC team? If the thought of tackling this much-needed task is overwhelming, or if you simply don't have the time, then Novel Publicity's team can help.
Because most of us either are authors or have worked for authors, the PA team has the knowledge to help you build an awesome ARC team! Check out the PA services page of the Novel Publicity website for more details.

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