At what point in your blogging career is is appropriate to email a publisher about ARCs. I have used NetGalley for reviews as a smaller blog. But now that my blog had grown I was wondering when was a good time. Thank you! 🙂
The very vague, general rule is that you should wait until you’ve been blogging for six months before requesting Advanced Reading Copies (ARCs) from publishers. However, it’s also important to realize that there are exceptions to every rule. 😉
Some bloggers make incredible progress with their posts and followers after even 3-4 months. For others, they may not have progressed very far even after six months.
What publishers look for
Ultimately, I don’t think publishers care a ton about when you started blogging. Of course, eyebrows might be raised if you start requesting them after only a week or two. But once you’ve proven that you’ve been around for a little while, publishers focus more on these other factors:
- Consistency. They like to see that you post fairly often. This shows that you’re serious about your blog and put a lot of effort into it.
- Engagement. They look at how many comments your posts get and how often you interact with your readers.
- Relevance. Publishers often say that when handing out ARCs they look for blogs that make a good fit. For example, if you mostly review sci-fi books and most of your readers love sci-fi, then you request a contemporary romance, you might not get approved. The publisher might prefer that the ARC goes to a blogger that focuses more on contemporary romance. Or sometimes it might just be about the general ‘vibe’ of the blog. Does it seem like a good fit for that publisher or that specific book?
- Reach. Ultimately, ARCs exist to help market books. That means sending them to places that will generate buzz, hype, and sales. This means page views, follower numbers, email subscribers, and comment numbers.
Everyone progresses at a different pace
Blogs don’t progress at the same rate. One blogger may have 500 followers and thousands of comments after only three months of blogging. Another blogger may have only 300 followers and a few hundred comments after nine months of blogging.
So although the six month ‘rule’ does exist, it doesn’t necessarily apply to everyone. Ultimately you have to look at your own blog and make a judgement call. Do you have a decent following? Do you update your blog frequently? Do you have active engagement on your posts?
Even if you’re not sure, you can still send a request. The worst thing that will happen is that they say no. If that happens, wait a few more weeks/months and then try again. 🙂