Yesterday I read an article explaining how Amazon calculates popularity… ie: decides how often and to whom they should recommend your books to. It is an algorithm based on the number of social interactions and page clicks, not purchases.

I find that very interesting.

I knew you could buy your way onto a best sellers list. I didn’t realize you could hack you way to popularity on Amazon.

Essentially if you have 300 close acquaintances you could easily propel your book forward onto the popularity charts. All you need to do is get them to post using the Amazon social interactions button. So if someone tweets your book from the Amazon page and another posts it to Facebook while another pins… well, you get the point.

Basically it is getting your friends to viral market for you.

I have mixed feelings about this. Yes, I ask readers who like the book to write a review, but to get all my friends and family and fans to viral market for me seems a bit wrong. And it isn’t an actual show of popularity. I belong to a dart league and I attend a ton of tournaments. If I convinced half of them to socially share my book… roughly 1000 likes could be obtained in a short time.

But they wouldn’t be honest

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  1. I am constantly amazed when Amazon send me emails that recommend books to me…and my own book is always on there. Don’t they take the fact that I WROTE IT into account? Or do they think I might want to check it over just once more…?


    • Hadena James

       /  March 15, 2013

      My own books are recommended to me as well, which is interesting since I write with a Nom de Plume. I actually downloaded a copy of Dark Cotillion to see if “owning” my own book stopped it and it didn’t.


  2. I don’t understand I’ve often heard this before. How can a author buy themselves into a bestseller list? p.s love the post.


    • There are companies you pay to “pre-order” your books or to buy hundreds of copies of digital books the week it is released. Since best seller lists are calculated based on a books sales for that week, it puts you on the best seller list. Essentially, you are paying for your own books, but using a company to do it since you can only buy so many copies your own work and have them count or with ebooks, you can only buy one copy.

      Thanks! 😀



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