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Why Book Blog Tours Shouldn’t Be About Selling Books

Why Book Blog Tours Shouldn’t be About Selling Books

Image of person with laptop over sign saying blog - image by pixaby.comWe’ve run posts on here before about book blog tours, including case studies by self-published authors who have considered their blog tours a success. But we also often hear negative comments from those who are disappointed with the results, particularly if they can see no related book sales. Canadian indie author, blogger and consultant Barb Drodowich proposes the purpose and success of a book blog tour should not be considered from a sales perspective. So if it’s not about sales, what’s the point of doing one? Read on to find out…

Barb Drozdowich

Author, blogger and consultant Barb Drozdowich

The subject of book blog tours seems to be filled with strong feelings as well as a lot of misinformation or confusion. Because of this I decided to write a book on the subject to help authors understand and it also why I’m writing this post today. I’d like to share some thoughts.

Let’s be clear right up front:

BOOK BLOG TOURS DON’T SELL BOOKS!

So – why the heck would you do a tour if not to sell books?

What’s the Real Point of Book Blog Tours?

Book blog tours are the electronic version of an author meet and greet – a book signing, perhaps. This is a PR activity. The authors want to chat with as many readers as they can.

I can just hear someone say – but no one comments on the blogs I visited.

Comments aren’t necessarily as important as sharing. A comment that a reader leaves is wonderful. I love getting comments on my blogs, but sharing has a larger potential. I have thousands of followers on Twitter, and large numbers of contacts on my other social media accounts. If I share a post on my social media accounts, I can potentially involve a lot more people in the conversation than I can by just leaving a comment.

In our virtual world, sharing a post is the equivalent of saying “Come over here and see what this person has to say.”

Book Blog Tours as a Virtual Meet and Greet

Let’s get back to my original point – a book blog tour is supposed to be like a book signing – an author meet and greet. The idea is not sales, but schmoozing. The author wants to share information about his/her book with as many people as possible. To quote a recent article by Aimee, a blogger who arranges blog tours:

 “I know when you think ‘Book Tour’ most authors immediately think ‘book sales’ but it’s not true.  I always try to tell my authors that book tours don’t sell books, they get people talking about your book, which in turn may help sales at some point but really it’s about getting you as the author and your book out into the interwebs to be found!

Photo of person typing into laptop

Use book blog tours to virtually meet and greet your readers, from the comfort of home (image by pixaby.com)

How to Run an Effective Book Blog Tour

In order to ensure that your next book blog tour is better than your last one, I suggest two things:

  • set goals for your next tour
  • choose bloggers to host that have specific features

Let start with a list of questions to get you thinking about your goals:

  • Do you want to increase the number of reviews posted for your book?
  • Do you want to expand your horizons – meet new bloggers who read the genre that you write? Meet some readers who might become future fans?
  • Do you want to chat directly with readers or expose your book to an audience in a different country?
  • Do you want to be on tour for a few days, a month, or longer?
  • Do you want to participate in a Twitter or Facebook party or be on a blog talk radio show?

For my second point, choose bloggers who:

  • Specialize in the genre you write – don’t have a generalized content blog
  • Have high traffic numbers (most bloggers are proud of their stats)
  • Have a wide assortment of share buttons to allow for sharing your promo
  • Have a large social media following to attract interest in your promo and are active on social media
  • Interested in featuring an author rather than filling their blog with content
Cover of Barb's book about blog tours

For more of Barb’s thoughts on blog tours, you might like to check out her book

Thanks for letting me share some thoughts about book blog tours with you. I hope that I’ve given you a few points to think about and I hope that you approach your next tour differently!

OVER TO YOU Do you agree with Barb’s appraisal of book blog tours? Do you have tips or anecdotes from your own book blog tours to share? We’d love to know!

#Authors - why #bookblog tours aren't just about selling books - new post by @sugarbeatbc Click To Tweet

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Barb Drozdowich

Social Media and Wordpress Consultant Barb Drozdowich has taught in colleges, universities and in the banking industry. More recently, she brings her 15+ years of teaching experience and a deep love of books to help authors develop the social media platform needed to succeed in today’s fast evolving publishing world. She owns Bakerview Consulting and manages the popular blog, Sugarbeat’s Books, where she talks
about Romance – mostly Regency. She is the author of 6 books and over 20 YouTube videos all focused on helping authors and bloggers. Barb lives in the mountains of British Columbia with her family. www.bard

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  1. I have just discovered blog tours and yes they are about increasing your visibility and not sales.
    I did a blog tour for my most recent children’s picture book and was pleased with both reviews posted as well as interaction with the bloggers.
    I have since undertaken a days blog blitz which was also great at generating reviews etc..

    But definitely not for sales.
    We all have things and ways which suit and for me this is suiting me currently

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