With all of the books available today, it’s important for authors to do everything they can to make their books stand out. A great way of doing this is by getting endorsement quotes about the book before it’s published. These quotes can be printed on the book jacket or inside pages, as well as used in a variety of ways for marketing. Book endorsement quotes are powerful because they are akin to customer reviews, but they have the added bonus of coming from people your audience admires and respects.
When I work with authors, I always advise them to make a list of people they know who might seem noteworthy to the book’s target market. For business books, we’re talking about thought leaders in the industry, senior people at well-known organizations, editors at respected publications, and even other authors. I also advise my clients to make a list of “dream endorsers”—people they don’t know yet, but could use an excuse to get to know.
Once my clients have at least half of their book written, we talk about the best way to reach out to potential endorsers to ask for support. The approach should be tailored based on each relationship, but there are certain things that should always be included.
Below is a sample email that explains how to ask for book endorsement quotes.
Email Subject: Will you endorse my book?
(Being direct is usually appreciated, but feel free to get creative with the subject.)
- The introduction of the book and one or two of the best chapters, ideally put into one PDF that is marked confidential. (You should offer to send the whole manuscript, but don’t send it right away. It could seem overwhelming to review a long document and be a turn off.)
- A jpeg of the cover art, if you have it.
Step 1: Insert flattery while at the same time being genuine. Bonus points if you can proactively help the person out somehow.
I love your recent blog post about xyz! You always offer such great insight for your readers. I just shared it with my 500+ followers on LinkedIn.
Step 2: Draw a connection between what they do and your book.
Given your work consulting with large organizations, I thought you might be interested in a project I’ve been working on that aligns with your expertise.
Step 3: Explain the project.
(Keep this short. More info is available in your attachment.)
Over the past year, I’ve been working hard on a book that will challenge companies and individuals to set a higher bar when it comes to leadership. After 15 years of management consulting and leading large global organizations, I’ve seen how difficult it can be for groups of people—new and very seasoned—to simply work together effectively to get something done. These less-than-perfect situations often provide the most teachable moments, but it isn’t always easy to determine how to make improvements or carve out the time to reflect on what went wrong. This reality inspired me to write a leadership book that more accurately reflects the real professional world—a world of imperfect leadership. My book is in the final stages of production, and it will be published by XYZ Publisher in September.
Step 4: Explain what you need and provide a deadline.
(The deadline should allow extra time for you to extend it in case people are late.)
I would love to share a sneak preview of the book with you, in hopes you will provide a short endorsement quote. I attached a sample of the manuscript so you can get a feel for the material. Please keep this confidential. If you wish to see the full manuscript, just let me know.
Endorsement quotes are usually only a sentence or two, and they are immensely helpful to authors. I would be extremely grateful for any praise or feedback you could provide. I truly respect your work and would be honored to earn your endorsement on this project.
My publisher has requested that I submit endorsement quotes by X date so that they can be included within the book and on the jacket. I know you are very busy and I respect your time. Please let me know if you will be able to help.
It’s as simple as that! Yes, it might feel a little awkward asking people you admire to say nice things about your work. But you didn’t get to where you are today by letting fear deter you from reaching your goals! The worst that can happen is that people say no, or they don’t respond. If that happens, don’t get discouraged. Notable people are often approached for endorsement quotes on a regular basis, and they can’t endorse everyone’s books. (If they did, they would lose credibility with their audience.) Start with the endorsers you admire the most, and keep asking people until you have at least a handful of quotes. You might be surprised how many people welcome the opportunity to share nice things about you and your work!
To learn more, contact us about our consulting services for authors.
Amelia Forczak is a Best-Selling Ghostwriter and the Owner of Pithy Wordsmithery, a company that provides strategic ghostwriting, marketing, and consulting for authors and businesses. Pithy Wordsmithery works with clients to ensure the message they are conveying through their website, branding, marketing materials, presentations, and social media is the best possible message for their unique business.