Plan and Execute an Effective Virtual Book Tour
By Lisa M Umina
A virtual book tour is when people from around the globe talk about your book via their blog and/or social media accounts. Your book promotional presentation gets the word out to your personal connections and the people within your local community. A virtual book tour, if planned properly, has the potential of reaching thousands of potential readers around the globe.
So how do you get started?
I know, research is that assignment from your English teacher that you always hated. It usually involved long trips to the local library and pouring through reference books to gather information. Lucky for you, research can now be done from the comfort of your own lap top.
What are you researching? You are looking for people who have an active presence on the web with a community of faithful followers. If you have written a YA novel, you will want to seek out other authors in that community who would be willing to read and talk about your book. The same is true for your non-fiction how-to manual – seek out those in the industry with an audience that would be willing to chat about your book.
Where do you look?
Start by reviewing the blogging community. Google has created a search program just for blogs. Google Blog Search
Search for blogs in your genre or industry. For example – here is a list of the top Fiction Writers Blogs for 2015.
Sci-fi and fantasy blog directory
Fiction blog directory
Non-fiction blog directory
Spend time on some of the blogs looking for ones that have reviewed books or interviewed authors. You will also want to look for blogs that accept guest blog posts. This means that you can submit an article to them about your book.
The next step is to contact those on your short list with the following request:
I have self-published a new book entitled: The Name of Your Wonderful Book
(include the synopsis you worked on for your back cover content) and then ask if they would be willing to read your book and either write a review or be willing to interview you for their blog.
Keep an excel file or chart of those you have contacted and then fill in the details as they become available:
Name of the blog
Link to the blog
Contact person name
Date of contact
Date Sent book (PDF or hard copy)
Book Review (Y/N)
Book Interview (Y/N)
Personal submitted blog article(Y/N)
Date of Publication
Link to the Article
Keep in mind that this will be a numbers game; the more people you contact, the more blogs that will be part of your virtual book tour. Every “no” gets you that much closer to the “yes.”
Create a Schedule for your Virtual Book Tour
Once you have a listing of those people willing to participate in your virtual book tour, create a calendar of the expected dates of review publication and/or your interview. Publish this listing on your website, talk about it on your blog and share the information on your social media sites:
This coming Monday, Ida Notation will be interviewing me about my latest book The Name of Your Wonderful Book on her blog The Name of Her Blog. (Link to her blog)
Part of the success of a virtual book tour is that not only do they talk about you and your book, but you are also promoting their blog.
Mysteries and My Musings is a fun blog that offers a variety of examples of both reviews and author interviews. Here is a directory of the most recent interviews.
Virtual Book Tour
Once you have done the research and planted the seeds for global DOMINATION – you can create a little calendar for your website that looks something like this:
Blog California (link to them) – book review of The Name of Your Wonderful Book
Blog Ohio (link to them) – an interview with me about The Name of Your Wonderful Book
Blog London (link to them) – book review of The Name of Your Wonderful Book
Blog Florida (link to them) – an interview with me about The Name of Your Wonderful Book
You get the idea
This virtual tour can continue long after your book first hits the stands. Continue to stay in touch with the different blogs on your list.
One More Thing
Remember the adage of “you scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours?” Offer to participate in a virtual book tour for another writer(s). The more you keep your name out there, the more word will spread about your book and your brand!
Bottom Line: Taking the time to create a virtual book tour will have long term benefits of getting the name out about The Name of Your Wonderful Book.
Remember, what is published on the Internet – stays on the Internet.
Please visit our blog for very informative information about writing and marketing your book. http://halopublishing.com/blog/