Thursday, March 5, 2009

The One Thing I Wish I’d Known Before Taking a Virtual Book Tour

Today's special guest is Phyllis Zimbler Miller. She is going to share with you just a little bit of the knowledge she gained while on a virtual book tour to promote her book, Mrs. Lieutenant: A Sharon Gold Novel.

The One Thing I Wish I’d Known Before Taking a Virtual Book Tour
By Phyllis Zimbler Miller, author of Mrs. Lieutenant: A Sharon Gold Novel

I’ve often written about taking a virtual book tour because I think this is the best book promotion money that I’ve spent. The virtual book tour with Dorothy Thompson of opened doors that I would not have even known about to try to open myself.

There is one thing that I would have liked to have known beforehand: Offer an extra free book – one for a contest/giveaway – to every blogger who is hosting you on her/his blog. This creates incredible goodwill with the blogger because you the author have just helped the blogger’s overall site.

How? Because increased buzz is created when people comment about a post, and then others comment about the comment.

The key to forging the best relationship with bloggers on your book tour, I found, was to put yourself in the mindset of what can you do to benefit the blogger and NOT what the blogger can do to benefit you the book author.

Besides offering an extra book, there’s the question of how you can enhance your book tour stop on a person’s blog. Let’s say the blogger is reviewing your book. Offer to write a companion post to be run the following day on a topic of the blogger’s choice. (Yes, this is more work for you, but you are a writer, aren’t you?)

Why does this make the blogger happy? Because you’ve provided related content to the blogger’s review. And if with the review the blogger announced a contest/giveaway for your book, you’ve just provided another blog post where this contest/giveaway can be announced.

Or perhaps you are being “interviewed” by the blogger. You answer the blogger’s questions ahead of time and the “interview” is posted on the blog. You can offer to be committed for the next two days to answering any questions on writing that blog readers may leave in the comments. And then keep your promise by visiting the post several times a day for the two days so that readers who have been promised a “dialogue” with you will in fact have that experience.

In conclusion, whatever you can think to do by your online activities to help the blogger attract readers to her/his blog will be much appreciated. The blogger will feel appreciated rather than possibly feeling taken for granted. And, of course, say thank you publicly in the comments for the review or interview – and also say thank you privately through personal email.

BONUS TIP: If you are on Twitter and/or Facebook include the link to the blogger’s review/interview. This is a great way to “thank” the blogger while getting more exposure for yourself and your book. A win-win situation.

1 comment:

Phyllis Zimbler Miller said...

Cheryl --

Thanks for giving me the opportunity to share these "words of wisdom" with other book authors.