How do you plan a blog tour for your book launch?
After the release of my seventh book, Dirty Bombs, I’ve found myself going through some of the same steps to promote the new title. Much like myself, many authors have websites and blogs they are happy to share to lift one another and promote their work. Creating a Blog Tour for your Book Launch is a fantastic tool to network with other writers, and break out of your own existing audience to reach more readers.
If YOU are an author with your own platform, the promotion goes both ways. By hosting a blog tour, you get a break from providing content which you can use to focus on more creative work. Your site, and subsequently your books, will also me exposed to your hosted author’s audience as they share and promote their article to their networks.
If you’re worried about sharing your platform, let me drive this one point home. Readers will read any and everything they want. Once they read one author, they don’t just stop reading. They continue on to the next and so on. Sharing your platform and giving a hand up to your fellow craftspeople will create a generous trend in your favor for the future. That’s what networking in this industry is all about. If you disagree, I recommend heading over to Twitter and following Brian Keene and Mary Sangiovanni, without whom I wouldn’t have had the gentle nudge of encouragement to publish my first horror story.
A Simple Step-by-Step Guide to Blog Tour Your Book Launch
What is a blog tour? It is where you provide tailored content to another creative person’s blog for the purpose of promoting your new release. It is preferred your content be original for each blog platform and match the themes and subjects of the blog you’re writing for. A good example being, for a blog with predominantly male horror readers, you won’t write an article about being a mom and finding time to write. You can appeal to a wider audience by adjusting content to the given audience.
Now, let’s jump in.
Four Months ‘Til Book Launch
Start by making a list of influencers you already know and have a relationship with. If you’re new to the literary industry, any writing groups you’re a member of on social media would be a good place to start. Begin INFORMALLY asking if they would like to help in promoting your newest publication. If they agree, collect their email address and let them know you will be reaching again in the coming weeks with details and content options. The more, the merrier.
Don’t Forget YouTube!
If you are scheduled to attend any type of convention, chances are there will be various platforms conducting interviews. You can hire a PR firm to schedule these for you, or you can do a Google search for articles concerning your convention to find out who has announced their attendance. Contact them professionally and offer your time for an interview if they are interested.
Next, build a standard form using Google Forms, or any other solution you’re familiar with. This will serve as a formal registration form for your blog tour. Required fields should be the name of the contact person, name of the platform, general demographic of the platform audience, contact information, and choices between the type of content you’re will to offer.
Common Blog Content Offerings
- An article written by you that is relevant to the host’s audience
- have the host read the book being promoted and write an honest review on their website
- The host conducts a giveaway of your new book or promotional material on their platform
- The host sends you interview questions and publishes them as a blog post
- You simply provide your media kit for them to promote.
- Your media kit should be sent to everyone signing up for your blog tour
- Items in your media kit include images of yourself and a high resolution image of your book cover, the back cover blurb, your author bio, and purchase links for your book
- Other Media Might Include
- Podcast Guest
- YouTube interview
- Instagram Feature- Flatlay
- Print Article
- Physical Appearances, books signings
- For more content ideas, you can look at my Speaking Page.
Three Months ‘Til Book Launch
Send your emails! Contact the long list of influencers, writers, and the like you’ve collected over the month. For those platforms where you are providing the content, after 2 weeks, send a follow up email for those who have not responded.
For those unconventional platforms, follow up with them to hammer out details ASAP. This way any recording, filming, or booking can be done and ready for your launch.
Two Months ‘Til Book Launch
Follow up with each tour stop contact individually. Confirm their chosen content and give them a timeframe of delivery (should be within a month). Remind them what day to post the content to their platform, usually the week of release. Make the process as easy as possible for those hosting you on their platform. This will encourage future positive interactions. Plus, they are doing you a HUGE service of spreading the word about your new book.
One Month ‘Til Book Launch
PROVIDE THE CONTENT!!!!! There is nothing more important than being on time. Do not forget to thank your host again and remind them of when to publish the content.
The Week of the Book Launch
You guessed it: Remind them again, but very subtly.
“Hi Tiffany! Thank you again for posting your review this week. Tuesday is going to be such a huge day for me and I am so grateful to share this with you. You’re absolutely amazing. Let me know if there are any hiccups or you have any questions about the content before it goes live on Monday. CHEERS!”-
Put this in your own words. I’m just an extremely chipper person.
RELAX!!! If someone forgot to post your content, OH WELL! So many people are in your corner cheering for you and are genuinely excited to watch you succeed. Follow up with your gratitude and any sales results they may have contributed to, and celebrate your book release as a small miracle in itself.
You will find in the writing world, authors give a hand out as many times as they’ve been given a hand up. This is no doubt why I’ve becoming a book coach. Coaches are so much more than editors. They provide encouragement, but give you honest and actionable advice to better your craft. I spend as much time answering general questions about the publishing industry and processes as I do carefully considering a plot structure. The sooner you partner with a writing coach, the faster you’ll move from having an idea for a story to seeing your hardback on the shelf of your favorite store.
Want to See what a writing coach can do for you?
Are you interested in a free 30 minute consultation with a writing coach? Check out the services I offer, schedule a meeting, and let me help you reach your publishing goals.
Dacia M Arnold is an award-winning American novelist, mother, and ten-year Army Veteran. She is the author of dystopian science fiction and coaches writers of all caliber and discipline to enhance their writing and create better balances of authorship and daily life.