Amazing advancements in technology have undoubtedly made our lives easier. You can shop online, accessing stores worldwide who then ship the purchases directly to your doorstep. No need to peruse thousands of books and journals at the library when conducting research…simply click a button on your laptop for instant answers. Lose your keys…want to pay a bill…need to track your health symptoms? There’s an app for that. And now you can even go on a book tour to promote your new novel without having to step foot out of your home. It’s called a Virtual Book Tour or a Book Blog Tour, and it’s one of the fastest, easiest ways to get maximum exposure for your novel.

I am currently in the process of setting one up for myself through RABT Book Tours & PR, starting with a Book Blitz slated for March 25th, 2019, and a Virtual Book Tour running from April 8th-April 19th, 2019. New to the concept myself, I did a little of my own research before embarking on this journey, and thought I would share my experiences with you, whether you are an author looking for ways to market your own book, or if you are an avid reader anxiously waiting for that next great novel to purchase.

What is a Virtual Book Tour?

Gone are the days when you had to spend an arm and a leg travelling across the globe to market your novel. Now, with the help of the internet, you can spread the word by touring across people’s blogs, showcasing your book to readers of your genre, reaching thousands of people with a few clicks on your keyboard.

Tours can range from one day to several weeks, depending on what you desire, and each day of the tour a different blog will feature you on their site, exposing your novel to all of their followers. Your feature can be a synopsis of your book, or a Q & A with the blog’s author, an excerpt from your novel, or you can write a post on a topic related to your story. Some of the host blogs may also offer to write a review of your book, which can be a huge booster to your sales (although you are not guaranteed a good review). Being showcased on a different blog each day for weeks exposes you to thousands of potential readers and also may help you to establish your author platform, growing your audience on social media and on your own website.

There are different ways to do a tour. You can do a book blitz, which is being on several blogs all in one day. The content is the same across all of the blogs, usually including a synopsis of your book, your author bio, an excerpt from your novel, and purchase links. It requires very little work on your part, but gives you maximum exposure all in one day.  A tour, on the other hand, lasts several weeks, and may require you to write posts and answer questions, but it also is more interactive with the audience, helping you to connect with new readers more effectively than just doing a blitz. Tours and blitzes can be used to promote your book pre-launch as a way to start a buzz about your book and pre-sell some copies before it is ready for mass consumption. It can be used as a cover reveal to get feedback on your cover design and gain interest from potential readers. And once your book is finished and ready for purchase, it can be used as a marketing tool as links are always included so readers can buy the novel once they are hooked. You can do giveaway prizes as well to get more people engaged…perhaps raffle off a signed copy of your novel or a gift card of some sort.

There are two methods of doing a Virtual Book Tour, which is setting one up by yourself, or using a book blog tour company to fully organize a promotional tour for you. What’s the difference? If you go the company route, they are willing to contact hundreds to thousands of blogs that cater to your genre to see if they are interested in showcasing your book…they already have established connections with these blogs so you are more likely to get hosts interested in featuring your novel. They are doing the main work to get you set up which saves you time to focus on other matters…like writing. There is a fee for services, but it is quite modest depending on how large you want your tour to be. On the other hand, if you forgo using a company, you are responsible for finding your own host blogs for your book tour. You may save a little money, but you will be doing far more work.

Blog Tour Sites

If you are interested in having a book blog tour company assist you in setting up your own virtual tour, there are several aspects to consider. Look for a company that focuses on promotional tours for your genre. You want to be exposed to the right group of potential readers to garner a following and sell some books. Also, price point varies from one site to another ($20 – $900), as do the types of packages that are available. Do your own research to see which company fits your needs as an author.

Here are a few book tour sites to consider when setting up your own blog tour:

This is just a small sampling of the blog book tour sites that exist, but it will give you something to think about. Promoting your book can seem daunting if you are an Indie author. It’s too easy to get lost in the throng of self-published authors. By launching a book blog tour, you can get your name out there, help you gain interest for your new novel, without having to break the bank by travelling from one city to the next doing a book tour the old-fashioned way. Finally, a way to tell thousands of people about your book, without having to leave the comfort of your own home.

Follow me on my own book blog tour…I’ll be posting info on my events page and social media sites so that you can track me on each blog I visit. Each site will feature unique content, so stay tuned for the fun is just about to begin!

💋 Lanie Mores