Amazon ‘Sockpuppet’ accounts are virtual puppets created by Amazon authors to give their own ratings a boost. Using these accounts, authors employ tactics such as:
- Giving their own books a 5 star rating and a glowing review
- Giving other authors in their genre a 1 star rating and a damning review, regardless of actual quality
- Creating message board threads and other discussion topics praising their own magnificent literary skills, under the guise of an ‘impartial judge’
- Sending death threats to reviewers and bloggers who were less than fully pleased with their book
This is the Novice Amazon Sockpuppet Strategy. It requires little more than a second email address, 2 minutes to register the fake account and a vigilant eye to watch for any negative comments about their book.
The Advanced Amazon Sockpuppet Strategy is a way for authors to shake this model up and see better results. The process is much more time-consuming and expensive, but we all knew what we were in for when we signed up for this lifestyle:
1. Start with a newly released book of yours that has not received any reviews yet.
2. Create 965 fake Amazon Sockpuppet Accounts. These must seem to originate from 965 different locations (IP addresses). Better get to work reading up on how to use untraceable Proxy Servers to disguise the location of each account! Do this gradually over a period of 3 months.
3. Also create 965 fake Paypal Accounts. Load each one with the value of your book (told you this would be more expensive, but you’ll recoup a bit in the next step and the final result will make it all worthwhile). Connect each Paypal account to its own Amazon Sockpuppet Account.
4. Over the period of a month, start using your Sockpuppet Accounts to leave 1 star negative reviews about your own book. Make sure to buy a copy of the book first in order to make it a ‘Verified Purchase’ review (and give you back either 35% or 70% of the book value, depending on your royalty rate). The tone of the review must attack the book itself in odd ways and remain free from abusive language.
5. Once the month is up and your book has seemingly racked up 965 solely negative reviews, start your pity campaign. Email the story of how ‘hated’ your book has become to reviewers, bloggers and book journalists.
Now sit back and watch the sales flow in as people flock to buy a copy of ‘the worst book on Amazon ever’ and see what the fuss is about. Hey if you’re lucky, they’ll decide that it’s not actually that bad and win you extra salvation points!