A virtual book tour provides you with a way to “travel” around the country or the world from the comfort of your home office. However, like any ‘round-the-world trip, which includes a variety of stops with many logistics, you must develop some way to manage all the details once your are one the move. Otherwise, you won’t end up at the right place at the right time. For a virtual book tour, that means you may forget to promote a stop along the way or to take the time to read the comments from readers and leave replies.
Showing Up for Your Trip
As I mentioned in my last post, you do have the choice of hiring someone to help you organize and run your virtual blog tour. I’ve done one tour on my own and three with help. These experts will tell you what you need to do, but they won’t organize you or your part in the tour. That means you need some sort of organizational method not only to get the preparation work done but also to help you navigate once the tour is under way.
You can hire someone to help you promote your tour stops as well. Sometimes the book tour company will offer a social media package or you can hire a social media expert to do this for you. I’ve done a little of both of both for my tours. When someone else helps you with this aspect of the tour, however, you risk forgetting to stop and see the sights. By that I mean that you may never check out your own posts, reviews or interviews when they are published by your hosts. That means you also may forget to reply to comments. So, be aware that you still need to “show up” at each tour destination.
If you do all the navigating yourself, the largest issues to deal with is overwhelm. You may not enjoy the tour because you feel too stressed. You will be in such a hurry each day to get to each stop and manage the promotion and replies to comments, you won’t give any of it your full attention. On the other hand, everything will get your personal touch. And the virtual book tour—and your book—surely will benefit from that effort.
No matter how you decide to run your virtual book tour, you will need some sort of organizational method to keep track of your stops, promotion and visits to hosts’ websites. You’ll also need to keep track of some of the earlier planning steps, such as invitations, content production, deadlines. Later, you might even want to send follow-up emails to your hosts, and there may be books to send out to contest winners or to reviewers. How will you do this? Here are some suggestions:
- Set up a computer folder for the virtual book tour. In it, create sub-folders for correspondence, your head shot and book cover, invitations, deadlines, etc.
- Set up a special folder in your email program to file emails related to your virtual book tour.
- Put your tour dates on a physical calendar or on your Google calendar (or some similar calendar) so you can easily keep track of stops and get a big-picture view of the whole tour.
- Create a mind map, worksheet or Excel sheet to track all the details related to tour hosts, content, deadlines, etc.
- If you are working with a virtual assistant or a virtual book tour company, create a shared Dropbox , Google Drive or Evernote account so you can easily share files.
- If you are working with a tour company, bookmark your tour page for easy reference to the links to each stop.
- Create a page on your website or blog with links to all your tour stops so visitors can continue accessing these posts, reviews and interviews.
The more organized you can be, the more smoothly your virtual book tour will go. And that means the more successful it will be—and the more fun you’ll have as you travel.
Photo courtesy of Photokanok |freedigitalphotos.net