What is a ‘Virtual Book Tour’?

What is a Virtual Book Tour?

A virtual book tour, also called a blog tour, consists of lining up a series of bloggers to review your upcoming book and/or conduct author interviews. Typically, around the release date of your title.  As the name suggests, it is the Internet version of an old-fashioned, in-the-flesh book tour.

What is the Purpose of a Virtual Book Tour?

The purpose of a virtual book tour is to generate interest in your book, called buzz. That interest should pay off in sales, but it won’t if you don’t capitalize on it with other promotional tools such as giveaways, author interviews, and promotion of your virtual book tour on Twitter, Facebook, your own blog/website. 

A blog tour is just a part of your overall promotional plan.

How Effective is a Virtual Book Tour?

There are many variables affecting the effectiveness or ROI* of your virtual book tour. A blog/website with lots of traffic will generate greater results than a website with just a few dozen followers. If you plan it right, a virtual book tour that includes influential sites can create substantial buzz and greatly impact your results.

The difficulty many independent authors face is that they don’t have the time it takes to research well-trafficked sites. And, of course, tours require some planning. Requests need to be sent out two to three months in advance of the release date.

If you conduct a virtual book tour on your own, be aware that you will have to send out hundreds of email requests to gather enough virtual book tour hosts to get a decent number of reviews. However, even 20 well-placed reviews and interviews can be highly effective. The reviews may not necessarily generate a lot of sales, but your name and the title of your book will have appeared on the net in 20 locations, with back links to your website and links to your sales venue. This increases your exposure on search engines.

Oft-times reviewers cross-post on Amazon, GoodReads, BookBub, and other venues, which will increase the reach of their review exponentially.

A Book Tour is NOT a DIY Project

As you can tell, a virtual book tour – especially if you are releasing your first book – is a ton of work consuming time and money that could be better placed by building your author platform, editing your book, working on the book cover … all the “stuff” necessary to get your book on the market.

That’s why hiring a book tour company makes so much more sense.  

A book tour company, such as The Book Marketing Team, has already assembled a rosters of reviewers, bloggers, writers who enthusiastically await new books to read and review! Most book tour companies specialize in specific genres. Some promote Romance novels, others Science Fiction, and so on. The book Marketing Team has a few different book tour groups: Science Fiction, Horror, Speculative Fiction, and Visionary Fiction.

When you have a clear idea of a release date, consider a virtual book tour as part of your marketing plan; reach out to book tour companies and don’t be afraid to ask questions.

Take a look at our virtual book tour package and contact us if you have questions.

*  ROI = Return on Investment

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