Full disclosure. I consider Bob Sutton both a friend and a great business book writer. When he comes out with a new book, I’ll check it out. Blurbs will have no impact on my buying decision.
I remember when the blurbs, those short bursts of praise on the cover of a book, made a difference. All books were print books then and I bought almost all of mine at a local bookstore.
I’d scan the shelves for a title that looked interesting. When I found one, I’d take it from the shelf and look at the cover. A blurb from a person I respected might get me to open the book and check out the table of contents, but so might a compelling description of the book on the back cover or inside flap.
Back then, the blurbs were part of the first line of investigation. I never bought a book because of one, but many prodded me to open a book and learn more about it.
Today, things are different. Some books are electronic. Most business books are bought online. Blurbs are probably less impactful but they’re still part of the first line of investigation.
In “Advanced Praise or “Blurbs” for Scaling Up Excellence,” Bob Sutton writes about the blurbs for his most recent book. In his usual analytical way, Bob also dissects the role of blurbs today. Here are a few tidbits.
- About half the people you ask for blurbs won’t give you one.
- Asking for blurbs is one way of spreading the word about your book
- Don’t assume that people won’t give you one. Ask.
There’s a lot more in the post. If you’re thinking about ways to promote a book, this post is a must-read.
It’s still worth going for blurbs and using them in your book promotion.
What do you think of blurbs?