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Virtual Book Tours: Effective Online Book Promotion From the Comfort of Your Own Home Kindle Edition
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I adore many of the friends I have made over the past couple of years as I have become more deeply involved in social media. I probably spend far more time on Facebook than I should; it is, however, my main source of “outside world” contact. Granted, that can be a bit skewed. What I have noticed is that many of the places I visit, the groups that have included me in hopes of my contribution, and the pages that are created for various and sundry books, products, or people, have become overwhelmed with advertising. Some of my most cherished groups have clamped down hard on hawkers and provided a day or a place to “hang out your shingle.” Then, the managers work hard to keep the communication as informative as possible.
Many marketing gurus in the book industry will tell you that blasting your new release in a dozen or more groups/pages in social media is looked on as spam and does more harm than good. Sadly, I tend to ignore most of those announcements, focusing more on the informative chats and concentrating on building my network. I must smile as I write this, because I almost missed a review on my own book with this inattention. So, where can you express yourself, tell people about your latest work, define for the world the thing you most want to say? On your blog. There are books on how to structure a really successful blog, whether you want to sell books or not – and I will look at them in coming weeks. Right now I want to talk about Jo Linsdell and her marvelous little book about tours.
Blogs are wonderful things if used to their greatest advantage. I use mine as a quiet place to express my discoveries, share my wonder, and build an audience for the way I think and write. In that process, it is often fun to entertain a guest. This, of course, is what happens in a blog tour. It is a time when you have someone in for tea (or coffee) and chat about a mutual interest. Jo shows you how to use that chat to the best advantage of the host and the guest.
There are rules one should follow to be a good guest and a good host. If you want to discuss some aspect of a work in progress, then you need to find blog hosts interested in your topic, the way you work, how you write, where your inspiration comes from. As noted, I have invited guests to share their point of view on a number of topics. It gives my blog life, draws traffic and, well, I usually learn something very interesting.
I learned a great deal from Jo’s book. She will take you through all of the steps of organizing, managing, closing and analyzing a blog tour. This little book is packed with page after page of links and references to help you find the blogs that fit you like a glass slipper. There are even commercial resources you can take advantage of, if you don’t feel confident enough to manage the first tour on your own.
One of my favorite parts (since I’m so obsessive when it comes to organization) is how you think through the process of organizing. What do you want to accomplish? What is your goal for the tour in general? (Don’t cop out here and say – “sell books.”) Think about what is most important about your work. Do you write fun youth fiction where the character grows? Is it steampunk or scifi fantasy? Do your characters portray historical personalities? If you know where you are going, then you have a much better chance of picking effective blog hosts (ones that will actually welcome you) and you will know what type of blog posts you want. Reviews are only one. There are interviews (of you and your characters) or feature stories. Jo knows I like to do book reviews, and that is what she asked of me.
As it happens, I also work with a small publishing company, and marketing is one of our highest priorities. Her book has saved me hours of research combing through the internet. All those feeble attempts to have volunteers help me dig up suitable blogs for tours for our authors became passé the moment I read her book. For this I will be forever grateful! People are busy and volunteers do have lives.
I think that Jo has addressed a really important aspect of the cyber world, and she has given clear and sound advice. Exchanging ideas, progress, thoughts, and connections in a media that allows reflection and preparation has a very different flavor from the “buy me,” “like me,” freebie hurly- burly of social media. Don’t get me wrong: I believe that there is a place and time for marketing on the big network sites. But I much prefer the path described by my friend and colleague, Jo Linsdell.
The fact that I read Jo's book doesn't surprise me (most of the non-fiction I read has been writing-related). What surprises me is how FAST I read it.
"Nobody ever made money writing a book - only by selling it." -Brian Jud
From the start of that quote to the end of the book, I was caught like a fish on the end of the line, being drawn in to the fisherman.
When I began reading, I knew nothing about virtual book tours. Nada. Absolutely nothing.
Now, not only do I understand them better, but I feel that I might be able to attempt one myself closer to the time I publish my own work. Jo uses simple, clear vocabulary to discuss book tours and everything needed to complete one of your own as well as gives information about what kind of tours there are, and how to go about setting one up.
From the full definition and description of virtual book tours to discussions about what to include in a "media kit" - something I have never heard about before reading this book - Jo shows how easy and (most importantly) how rewarding a virtual book tour can be.
If you're interested in doing or hosting a virtual book tour or, like me, need to discover what it actually is, pick up a copy of this book. You'll be glad you did!
I think the next thing I want to try out, which Jo discusses in her book, is a virtual book signing!
Jo Linsdell has blown me away with her new book Virtual Book Tours: Effective Online Book Promotion From The Comfort of Your Own Home. This is seriously a book that EVERY author promoting any book absolutely NEEDS to read. You will not be sorry, as a matter of fact, you will want to keep it close at hand for reference. All the steps are clear and easy to follow and there are many tools discussed in this book as well. You will find yourself going back to it repeatedly for marketing advice!
Review Written by: Virginia L. Jennings
Author of 'Visionary From The Stars'
& 'The Alien Mind'
Jo's book kick starts peddling the book to get the word out. Get great links to put her advice to action.
Get must-have tips for book promotion. Go and enjoy the journey.
Linda Gross author of THE CAVEMAN FORMULA
The Caveman Formula. (DT4M, Dating Tips for Men.)