In today’s virtual world, self published authors can take their promotion on the road without ever leaving home. Book tours are a keystone of a book marketing strategy. Going from city to city, authors shake hands and sign copies of their latest masterpiece to create a buzz. It is a process that takes months of planning, not to mention the travel time.
An Internet blog tour allows you to take your book out on the "virtual highway" and reach an expanded and more diverse audience. Promote your work, reinforce your brand and sell more books with a well planned blog book tour.
What is a Blog Tour?
A blog tour is a series of features that puts the spotlight on your book – a guest blog post, a book review, a free excerpt. The goal is to get people talking about your work.
- Reinforce your brand
- Build a fan base
- Get media attention
A blog tour creates impact, and impact creates sales.
Put the Right Tools in your Toolbox
Before you even start querying potential tour sites, you need to get all your tools together. A website, preferably with that goldmine blog, is an absolute necessity. Set up a page that contains marketing material for your book.
- Plot summary
- Author bio and picture
- Book cover graphic
Now, about that Book Blog Tour
It starts with you creating a list of blogs and websites you wish to query and to be featured on. Google offers a handy blog search option that will help you pinpoint possible tour sites. Try a variety of search strings when creating the list.
- “Blog tour”
- “Book review”
- “Author guest posts”
- “Featured authors”
- “Featured books”
The more targeted the site, the better. If you write children’s books, look for websites that focus on that genre. Pick a host with a fair amount of traffic, as well. There is no point in guest posting on a website that gets only two hits a month.
Now, start pitching. Like any good pitch, you want a hook – something catchy that makes them want more. It might be a tag line from the book or a blurb about the advantages of featuring you. Play up what makes you desirable.
"International best-selling author looking for blog tour hosts for his new book."
Try to address the communication to someone specific to make it personal. Contact blog hosts about featuring you as a guest blogger or doing a review of the book. Offer to provide them with a free copy, either print or digital. Expect flat out refusals or to be ignored by quite a few. Only about a third of the queries will give a positive response. You just keep moving forward until you have a series of consecutive posts on your book. When you do get a hit, make sure to promote the posting on your blog and social media pages to build exposure.
When you self publish, you take charge of every aspect of the book development including the marketing plan. A blog tour is an effective book marketing strategy that puts you in the virtual spotlight.