Tuesday, June 27, 2017

What a Book Tour Can and Can’t Do For You and Your Book


If you’re an author, you’re undoubtedly searching for new ways to market your book. Book tours are excellent tools for both newbie and established authors. However, having reasonable expectations prior to your tour launch keeps everyone on track. The following are some key things to keep in mind before taking your book on the virtual road.

What is the Primary Purpose of a Virtual Book Tour?

As with an in-person book tour, the main purpose of a virtual book tour is to meet and greet your existing and potential readers. It’s your opportunity to schmooze, promote and sing the praises of your book. But, what’s so great about a virtual book tour is you can do it from your living room while sitting in your PJs.

Engaging your readers in conversation about you, your writing and your book is easy peasy when you: 
  • Leave comments on participating blog posts
  • Comment and engage on social media posts
  • Be your usual awesome self

Wait…I Thought Book Tours Were All About Getting Book Reviews?

Here’s where many authors misunderstand the primary purpose of a virtual book tour. That’s because…

If you were on an in-person book tour, would you expect immediate book reviews?

Of course not. You’d probably sit at a table, pen in hand, and sign your book for readers. You’d chat about your book, and maybe even read an excerpt to a small gathering of fans, none of whom will sit down and immediately write a book review and post it on Amazon.

Sure, participating tour bloggers might have the opportunity to read your book ahead of time and perhaps leave a review, but… 
  • This rarely happens, since most book bloggers have HUGE TBR lists that go months into the future.
  • This is considered a “review in exchange for a free book”, which, although it does NOT go against Amazon’s current TOS, it does hold far less weight with potential readers. And…
  • Technically, these types of reviews are considered by Amazon to be editorial reviews, which do not get those coveted star ratings.

Trust me when I tell you that organic reviews are much more valuable to you as an author…and organic reviews are much more likely when more potential readers know about you and your book through your virtual book tour.

So, What the Heck Can a Book Tour Do For My Book and Me?

Promotion, promotion, promotion! Most book tours have anywhere between ten and twenty participating tour hosts. Each tour host publishes their post and then shares it with their own, unique social media followers. Therefore, conceivably, your book will be seen by hundreds (perhaps thousands) of potential readers who probably would not have happened to stumble upon your book by chance. That’s a HUGE organic market of potential buyers, readers and possible reviewers.

BUT…

YOU have to get involved in your tour. Look at it this way – if you scheduled time to promote your book at your local bookstore you wouldn’t show up and just sit in a corner, reading a magazine while ignoring everyone who came to hear about your book, would you?

Treat your virtual book tour as you would any other professional engagement by being just that…engaging. Don’t ignore your potential readers during a virtual book tour. Get social and it will definitely pay off in sales, fans and reviews.

If you're interested in a book tour please feel free to contact me to see how I can help market and promote your book! 

Friday, June 23, 2017

God's Silver Soldiers by Art Greenshaw Virtual Book Tour Stop and Book Excerpt



Picture
Book Genre: Christian/Superhero/Graphic Comics
Publisher: Nordskog Publishing, Inc.

PURCHASE ON AMAZON

Book Description:

Truthmonger Comics, is a creative entity whose mission is to bring the much-needed messages of morality and spirituality to today's youth through the medium of comic books. 

Joining creator/editor/writer Art Greenhaw for this new line of Truthmonger Comics and its flagship title, God's Silver Soldiers, are superstar comic book artist Ben Dunn, writer Rebecca Dunn, and graphic designer Josh Knight. Truthmonger Comics is additionally inspired by Art's friend of many years and biggest literary influence, Stan Lee.Creator/editor/co-writer Art Greenhaw s comic book roots run deep, Art having enjoyed a 20 -year friendship with Stan Lee and a lifetime apprenticeship.

- Book Excerpt -

The smoke is clearing on the lawn of Angelica’s newly blown up home. We see that the center of the home is completely missing, but the further away from the blast site there’s less and less damage.

The soldiers, who have been blown in different directions and have various stages of injuries, are getting up or waking up from being knocked out from the blast.

John is helping Becky up.

Moses: How ya doin’, girl?

Becky: What happened?!!

Soldiers have come together on the lawn. There’s holes and burn marks on their uniforms. One of them is holding pressure on a pretty bad cut on another’s arm.

John: Is everyone OK?

David: Define “OK”!!

Cecilia: Where’s Angelica?

Samson: Last I saw, she was being dragged off to that helicopter by what I can only describe as demons from hell! I mean, did everyone else see what I saw?

Moses talking, but with a memory bubble of the demons attacking.

Moses: Oh, I saw them, all right! Pretty much the scariest moments of my life!

All are looking puzzled.

Becky to Cecilia (or the group): Why did they zero-in on Angelica? Why not

any of us?!

David is speaking to the group.

David: I think I can answer that one, though I’m not sure how…!

John: What do you mean? Did you overhear them or something?

David: No. I mean, I know “why” they took her, but no one told me. It was like I

could read their minds...but even “more” than that. It was like I could just feel their intentions!

Soldiers are looking at each other skeptically.

David: Look, I know what you’re thinking. I’m not crazy, OK?! I can’t explain

it to you, but I’m telling you the truth!

Samson speaks to David.

Samson: (quietly) Look man, we’re not judging you. ALL of this is just a little

tough to take in...

Moses: Totally!! I mean, did you see those things?! THEY WERE DEMONS!

I was like, “Oh no you didn’t...!!!” when that hell-spawned, head monster grabbed Angelica!

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Author Bio: 

Creator/editor/co-writer Art Greenhaw's comicbook roots run deep, Art having enjoyed a 20-year friendship with Stan Lee and a lifetime apprenticeship studying the works of his biggest comicbook influences including Stan, Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko, Al Hartley, and Ben Dunn. 

Art was a National Council of Teachers of English literary competition award winner and was the Optimist Club's oratory contest winner. He has studied art at the Dallas Museum of Art and co-created and co-wrote stories and songs with pop culture icon Ed "Big Daddy" Roth, who proclaimed Art "The Voice of Rat Fink". 

Art is a Grammy Award-Winning artist, producer, arranger, and mixing engineer and holds a Grammy record for most Grammy Nominations (eight) by a group in his particular category of Gospel-Christian music. Among the legendary artists who have recorded the songs and stories of Art include Ann-Margret, Engelbert Humperdinck, Trini Lopez, The Jordanaires, James Blackwood, The Light Crust Doughboys, The Ventures, the Southern Methodist University Mustang Band, and many more.

It is Art's lifetime mission to bring much-needed messages of morality and spirituality to today's youth through his favorite literary medium: comicbooks. Art owns and manages the iconic #1 Texas legacy country band, The Light Crust Doughboys. Connect with the author on his website

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Book Tours: The Partnership Between Authors and Tour Providers



If you’re an author, you’re probably searching for new and effective ways to market your book. Book tours are excellent marketing tools for gaining book exposure, since they’re a great way to reach out to potential readers who might not otherwise come across your book.

If you’ve decided to take your book on tour, but have quickly found out just how much work is involved, you might choose to work with a book tour provider. After all, working with a professional means you can sit back, relax and let the tour provider do all the work for you, right? Absolutely not.

Book tours are a partnership between an author and a book tour provider. Each party has a list of responsibilities that must be met in order to ensure a successful book tour. While it’s true that a book tour provider does all the prep work, scheduling and tour stop monitoring; authors also have certain responsibilities to fulfill during a tour. Authors who neglect their responsibilities during a tour are doing themselves a definite disservice.

Be Timely

First and foremost, it’s critical that authors adhere to the timeline outlined for them by their tour provider. Professional book tour service providers understand the importance of contacting prospective book tour hosts well in advance of an upcoming tour. Bloggers are busy people who often schedule their special events posts months in advance. Expecting a busy blogger to throw together a post just mere days before a tour stop is not only inconsiderate, it’s unrealistic.

Be Proactive

Brainstorming ideas for tour content, with your tour provider, well in advance of a tour is essential. Unique and compelling materials are direct reflections on you as an author. Bloggers look for fresh, new content to share on their blogs. Providing lukewarm guest posts will promptly result in “thanks, but no thanks” responses from potential hosts. Book tour providers know what types of tour content bloggers are looking for, so trust their judgment when they make suggestions.

Be Courteous

Building relationships with book bloggers is crucial for your success as an author. Your tour provider will stress the importance of tracking host stop posts, in order to comment, like and share. They know that authors who willingly interact with bloggers and readers before, during and after a tour are actively building bridges that will result in greater interest for their books. So, remember to be present during your tour, by following posts, interacting with bloggers and engaging with potential readers.

It’s easy to have high expectations when paying for a service. We all want to be sure to “get our money’s worth”. However, understanding the responsibilities of both parties when entering into a book tour partnership with your tour provider will ensure that your tour goes smoothly, professionally and advantageously for everyone.  

If you’re an author and would like more information on book tours and how they can help you promote and market your book please let me know by submitting a form here. Happy touring!

~ Susan Barton, Book Marketer

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Book Tour Hosting – What’s in it for book bloggers?



Savvy book bloggers know that frequently updated blog posts keep readers coming back for more. A great way to build blog followers and increase views is to add new blog content several times a week, but doing this can be difficult for many bloggers. Writing unique content takes time. That’s why book tour hosting is so beneficial to book bloggers. All the post content is written for you. Need more reasons to become a tour host? Consider these:

Book Tour Hosting is Free Blog Marketing for You

Most book tour providers have large followings. When you team up with a tour provider, you're greatly increasing your audience. Professional book tour service providers post each tour stop, along with clickable blog links. This means everyone who follows a tour can simply click on your link to be taken to your blog, which means more blog views for you.

Book Tour Hosts Often Receive Incentives

Many tour providers offer tour host incentives. Some incentives are tour-specific; some are awarded after you’ve participated in a certain number of tours. Gift cards, free books, book swag, etc. are the standard host gifts.

Book Tour Hosting Saves You from Writing New Content

As mentioned at the beginning of this post, book tour hosting saves book bloggers from having to brainstorm post ideas, and then write and edit them. Chances are you’re not a full-time book blogger. You probably also have a 9 – 5 job. Simply copying and pasting content into your blog saves you a ton of time. Scheduling posts ahead of time makes your life even easier. What could be quicker and easier than copying, pasting and scheduling an entire post?

Book Tour Hosting is an Opportunity to Networking

Book tours are excellent opportunities to connect with new and established authors. Authors often reach out to bloggers

Before Deciding to Sign Up to Host Tours:

Before you decide to sign up to host tours with a professional tour provider, carefully consider the following:

  • Does the tour provider offer clickable blog links on the main tour page? If you’re not receiving free exposure for your blog post, then pass. It’s not worth the effort if the tour provider doesn’t link to your blog and tour post. 
  • Do you really have the time to follow through on every tour you sign up for? No-shows make everyone look bad. If you sign up for a tour, you’d better make sure you follow through on the promise. You’ll quickly find yourself dropped from a tour host list if you prove to be unreliable. 
  • Do you know how to schedule posts to go live on a future date? I know of no blogging platform that does not have post-scheduling capabilities. Copying, pasting and scheduling posts should take mere minutes. When you schedule tour posts ahead of time, the post is then guaranteed to go live on your scheduled participation day. No missed tour dates makes everyone happy. If you don’t know how to schedule a post, learn how before signing up to host tours.

If you’re a book blogger who’s interested in hosting book tours for My Book Tour, please fill out the form here. We’d love to have you on the tour host team!

Monday, June 12, 2017

Are You and Your Book Ready to Go On Tour?



So you’ve written a book and uploaded it to Amazon. You’re proud of your work and you want to shout it from the rooftops. You’ve already told all your friends and family about your new masterpiece, so what’s next? How about a virtual book tour?

Before you decide to take your book on tour – whether you go it alone, or you choose to hire a book tour service provider – you’ll want to make absolutely certain that you and your book are road-worthy. After creating your gorgeous, professional-looking book cover, expertly editing your content, and properly uploading your book file, you should seriously consider turning your attention to the following to determine if you’re ready for a book tour:

Author Website

An author website is a critical tool for any author – particularly authors who are planning to take their book on the virtual road. Why? – Because an author website is the central place to send all your potential readers.

Your author website provides the perfect home for information about you and your book. This is where you place your author bio and book description, and your book purchase and social media links. If you don’t already have an author website then take care of this crucial step now – before you begin planning your tour.

Social Media Platforms

Many readers love connecting with authors. If they read your book and love it, they’ll want to reach out to you on social media. They’ll also want to know when they should expect your next book. Social media provides the perfect opportunity for you to keep your readers informed. Tweeting, posting and commenting are great ways to keep your readers in the loop. If you’re not currently active on the social media biggies – Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, etc. – then now is the time to start building your followers.

Carefully Block Out Your Schedule

There’s nothing worse than an MIA tour author. You’ve gone to the trouble of scheduling a book tour (or the expense of having someone do this for you); you had better make yourself available to blog hosts and their readers. Leaving comments on tour posts and interacting with potential readers isn’t just proper tour etiquette; it’s your chance to make a good impression. And good impressions create readers. Why would you want to risk losing a potential reader by making yourself unavailable during a tour? Making sure your schedule is open during your tour ensures that you’ll be ready to schmooze with bloggers and readers.

These are just three of the considerations you’ll need to think about before you even begin scheduling your book tour. I’ll be adding more soon.

Please let me know if I can help you determine if a book tour is right for you and your book promotion plan! You can get in touch with me here.