“Any way you can do a lowdown on tours and giveaways?” ~ Jessica
Well sure I can! Let’s do this one piece at a time, for organization’s sake. Tomorrow the Giveaway post will go up, so watch for that!
What is a “Book Tour?”
A book tor is a series of dates and events set up by an author, publicist, promo group, or various hosting locations. Authors go to one book store or venue after another, read from their book, answer questions, sign copies, etc. in hopes of promoting their book and gaining new readers. Tours can last from a few weeks to several months, depending on the publicity plan.
What is a “VBT?”
In a VBT, instead of stopping at a physical location at a set date and time, authors virtually stop at a blog, focusing their attention on that post for one specific day. The nice thing about VBTs is even after the tour is over, the post stays online!
How does a VBT work?
The blogger, usually referred to as the host, prepares a blog post (the content pre-decided upon by the host, the organizer, and the author) and all the parties involved promote the post. The author gets publicity, the host gets page views, and the organizer gets paid (or gains popularity as a tour organizer).
I’ve hosted quite a few tours, especially starting out as a blogger. Tours are a great way for new book bloggers to get their blog out there! The tour group usually provides you with a copy of the book, an option of interviewing the author, all the post information, and sometimes a code or quote for a giveaway. All you have to do is write up a nice post and make sure it’s the first thing a new reader will see upon going to your page.
Some tips for tour hosts
- Always confirm that you’ve received your information and date for the tour.
- Write your posts ahead of time, and schedule them to publish at midnight of the date of the tour (a great program to use for this is Windows Live Writer—easy to set up, posts are easy to edit, and it lets you schedule the post to go live at whatever time you want).
- Spread your link around! Promoting the author means promoting your blog as well!
- If you are an awesome host, the tour group will usually ask you to participate in every tour they can get you scheduled for, so do your best, especially for those first few posts. Look around at other people’s tours and see what you like, what you don’t like, and what is best for all three parties.
- Don’t sign up for more than you can handle! one or two tours a week is everyone’s max—don’t try to do one every day just because it’s exciting. Trust me on this one, you’ll regret it later!
- Never be afraid to ask questions. Nobody minds answering them!
Hope this helps! Below are a few tour groups that are always looking for hosts.