5 Simple Steps to Snag Book Endorsements (+FAQs Answered)

Posted on Feb 23, 2024

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Written by Cloris Kylie

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Learning how to get book endorsements stands as one of the most crucial ways to heighten your book sales. Despite the brevity of words in endorsements, they play a large role in your success. You might think that coming up with your idea and writing your book should be your top priorities—and they should, to a point.

But if you don’t know how to market your book, your likely result is low book sales. Successful marketing hinges on recognizing the different parts of a book and the specific role each part plays. 

That’s why today, I discuss how to get book endorsements (also known as blurbs). Many authors focus on their plot, back cover copy, and dedication page. These aspects are important, but your endorsements also play a large role in your book’s success. Because of this, it’s time to learn how to get book endorsements!

Here’s everything you need to know about getting book endorsements / book blurbs:

  1. Who Should I Get To Endorse My Book?
  2. How Do I Request An Endorsement?
  3. Do Authors Get Paid For Endorsements?
  4. How Do You Get Celebrity Endorsements For Your Book?
  5. Where Do Endorsements Go In A Book?
  6. How Long Is A Book Blurb?
  7. When Should I Ask For A Book Blurb?

If you want to know all the ins and outs of publishing a book, including how to write, market, and publish it…we highly recommend watching your free training first.

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Who Should I Get To Endorse My Book?

Whether you write fiction or nonfiction, known authors in your genre are great endorsers for your book. 

If you write nonfiction, you may want to consider reaching out to seasoned professionals who work in your area of writing. For instance, if you write about soft skills such as conflict resolution or nonverbal communication, find people who are prominent in these fields. 

Are you a doctor writing a book on embodying a healthy lifestyle for the elderly? Reach out to well-known doctors and health gurus. Here’s a video showing how Dr. Jonathan Su was able to successfully publish his book and grow his practice through a book.

Likewise, if you write children’s books, contacting individuals who are making great strides for young adolescents is a good starting point. Consider children’s programs you admire and reach out to the founders. Or fellow children’s book authors.

If you write your memoir, reach out to other memoir writers or biographers whose writing you respect.

How Do I Request An Endorsement?

Requesting an individual to endorse your book is more straightforward than you may think. Simply put, you respectfully present your request. 

However, to do so you must find someone to ask, track down their contact information, and compose an email.

Let’s get into the details of how to get book endorsements. 

#1 – Find the right influencers for your book endorsement

The most powerful endorsements are those given by people who are well-known in your field.

To select the right influencers, find out who your ideal readers admire. Post the question on targeted social media groups or ask them directly.

Also, ask yourself what top influencers you follow and respect. Add their names to the list.

Focus on quality over quantity, but if you don’t have enough names, search for bestselling books similar to yours and check out who endorsed them.

It’s important that the influencers have a style and values similar to yours. That way, your ideal reader will likely be attracted to them and be familiar with their work.

How do you figure out the style and values of potential endorsers? Start by visiting the “About Me” page on their website and pay attention to their branding and message.

Then, visit their pages on social and focus on the style of their posts and the content they share. You’ll get a good idea of whether the person’s values and style might be a good match for you or not.

There are many ways to find someone’s contact information, but finding the best contact info will set you ahead of the crowd. 

If you plan to contact an author for an endorsement:

  • Fill out a contact form on their website
  • Search for them on social media 
  • Contact their agent 

Often, authors communicate which way they prefer to be contacted.

#2 – Deliver value first

Because it’s much easier to get a yes from someone who has already received value from you, it’s important that you start planning your request for endorsements in advance.

For blurbs by top influencers, you might need to start the outreach process several months ahead of the publication of your book.

Regardless of where you are in your journey, there’s always a way for you to bring value to the influencers and start a relationship with them.

Something as simple as sending them a handwritten note about how much their message means to you, posting a video review of their book on Amazon, or recommending them on LinkedIn will help you stand out.

Here are other examples of powerful ways to stand out:

  • becoming an active member on the influencers’ social media groups
  • attending one of their conferences
  • joining one of their paid programs

You should do this because you truly enjoy their message and not just because you’re seeking endorsements. Your true intentions will come through in your communications and behaviors.

Avoid going straight to the ask without having taken the time to deliver value first.

How To Get Book Endorsements

#3 – Prepare to ask for a book blurb

Before you reach out to potential endorsers, do everything you can to make it as easy as possible for them to say yes.

Prepare well in advance so you can find the best opportunities to ask for the endorsement, and give yourself enough time to get through gatekeepers.

For example, if the influencer will be speaking at an event in your town, you could grab a ticket and introduce yourself.

However, local events aren’t your only choice. One of my friends was interested in building a relationship with an influencer who would be speaking three thousand miles away. But that didn’t stop her.

By following the influencer on Instagram, she learned that this person loved brownies and would be attending the event with her husband.

My friend ordered a dozen brownies to be delivered to the event with a customized note that read, “Best wishes during your presentation. Hope you and your husband enjoy these treats!”

Book Endorsements Example

That was the start of their friendship.

#4 – Ask for the endorsement

It might feel nerve-wracking to ask, but never wrong. If you’re hesitant, it might be too soon in the relationship, especially when it comes to top influencers.

If you ask too soon, they will either ignore you or reject your proposal.

Rushing might mean that you’ll have to start the process all over again and find someone else to endorse your book.

Never send a mass request to a group of influencers. You’ll waste your time, and hurt your chances of ever building a relationship with them. Customization is key.

Send the influencers a copy of your book along with a well-crafted message asking for the endorsement.

Ideally, you’ll send them a physical copy. It doesn’t have to be the final version, and it doesn’t have to be perfect. It can be a printed PDF.

That said, you must ensure that whatever you send to the influencer is professionally packaged.

If sending a physical version of your book is not possible, you can send them the PDF or ebook, but you’ll have to ask in a way that stands out. You could achieve this by customizing your message in a unique way, creating a video specifically designed for them, or preceding your email with a handwritten note.

Think outside the box! A video card or a note written on a balloon would be clever ways to stand out, too.

Be succinct. Remember that time is a high-price commodity for influencers (for everyone!) so you don’t want to make it a chore to understand what you’re asking.

Start by expressing why you feel they’re the right person to endorse the book and why you respect them so much. Be sure to mention that you’re eager to make your readers aware of their work.

It’s important to recognize that everyone leads busy lives. Keeping your request short shows your respect for an author’s current workload. 

Introduce yourself, provide a bit of context on your book and why they would be a good fit, include any necessary details, and respectfully conclude.

Be sure to specify the length of the blurb you’re seeking (probably 50-100 words max) as well as by when you need it done. 

#5 – Follow up for book endorsements

If you don’t hear back from the influencers, it’s easy to assume they’re not interested in writing the endorsement and be tempted to give up. However, it’s important to realize that they might have not received your message yet. 

Emails go to spam folders. Gatekeepers delete emails and toss out mail. You never know!

When you follow up, try a different way to reach the person. If you used email first, follow up with a handwritten note or a message on social media.

If you find out the name of the influencers’ gatekeepers, reach out to them directly. Build a relationship with them as well, and you will have a great chance of success.

My rule of thumb is to follow up three times. If you don’t hear from them, it might be time to move on.

As you can see, if you write a great book, plan properly, and exercise a dose of authenticity, you can get endorsements from top influencers in your field.

The most important step is to take action.

Do Authors Get Paid For Endorsements?

While there are occasions where an author may be compensated for their endorsement, typically authors provide endorsements (or blurbs) free of charge.

As a rule of thumb, when learning how to get book endorsements, focus on who to ask and how you make the request, not how to purchase a positive blurb. Paid book endorsements can undermine the credibility of the endorsement as well.

How Do You Get Celebrity Endorsements For Your Book?

Start the process of obtaining a celebrity endorsement by choosing several names and looking up “celebrity contacts” or a similar keyphrase online. 

Some celebrities have information for a different individual they are “in the care of.” This can make contacting the celebrity more streamlined. 

Once you find the contact information, put into practice the tips mentioned above. One of the common myths about writing is that it’s impossible to secure high-level endorsements. While you may experience some roadblocks in the process, trying is worth it. 

You can listen to this episode from the Self-Publishing School podcast about how Kelsey Humphreys secured big-name endorsements for her book.

Kelsey Humphreys is a past student of SelfPublishing.com. In her interview with Founder and CEO of SelfPublishing.com, Chandler Bolt, she shared a few of her steps to landing big-name endorsements. 

Kelsey took the following actions:

  • Found the correct contact info for each person 
  • Kept requests short 
  • Focused requests around the goals of the person she reached out to 
  • Contacted many individuals, knowing some would say no

For me, I was able to leverage my endorsement by a top influencer to promote my book on social platforms, on my website, and even on webinars and speaking engagements.

Here’s what the endorsement looks like:

Book Blurb On Front Cover

Where Do Endorsements Go In A Book?

You could place endorsements or blurbs on the praise sheet (the page or two at the start of the book), on the front cover (see my endorsement example above), or on the back cover of your book (see the example below).

This example comes from The Politically Homeless Christian by Aaron Schafer where he features author Matthew Emmorey and another endorser, Anne Cody.

Book Endorsement Back Cover Example

How Long Is A Book Blurb?

In the example above, you’ll see these blurbs are a bit longer. Most influencer blurbs hover around 50 words (rarely more than 100).

Sometimes, writing the blurb for the person and asking if they’d like to tweak it or write their own is a good option. It minimizes the ask and increases the chances of them giving you a good book blurb.

If you know the endorser’s work well, you will be able to create a blurb that closely matches their writing voice.

When Should I Ask For A Book Blurb?

Don’t make your deadline too far in the future so that it’s put on the back burner, but don’t make it so soon that the influencer will immediately say no. I personally chose 3-4 weeks to collect the blurbs.

Be prepared to negotiate an extended due date, and allow for extra time in your planning.

When you share the blurb that you wrote, explain that you’re just trying to make things easy for them.

Express how much you appreciate their time and attention, and close with the promise to follow up in a week or two.

When Should I Ask For A Book Blurb?

Next Step

As you can see, endorsements are a very powerful form of social proof and trust-builder for potential readers of your book.

Endorsements alone might not make your book a bestseller, but they’ll give you an advantage over other books that don’t have them.

It’s easy to be sidelined by fear of rejection, but if you think about it, the worst thing that can happen is that they’ll say no. If you’re confident in the quality of your book, you have nothing to fear.

Take the first step today to gain powerful social proof and make your book a success!

And if you want to learn more about the publishing process as a whole, check out the resource below.

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Editor’s Note: This post was originally written by Cloris Kylie, with supplemental content written by Sarah Rexford, then edited and arranged by Omer Redden, managing editor of Self-Publishing School.

Disclosure: Some of the links above may contain affiliate partnerships, meaning, at no additional cost to you, Self-Publishing School may earn a commission if you click through to make a purchase.

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