Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Is a Blog Tour Worth It?

Last month I did a blog tour with Pump Up Your Book. This is the sort of thing that you could arrange yourself, contacting book bloggers and asking them for reviews. I was daunted by the time involved and opted to pay for a tour instead. There are different levels of tours that come with different price tags. I chose the $199 version.

Here's How It Works: You provide the tour company (in my case, Pump Up Your Book) with your cover art, first chapter, bio, media links, and maybe a short interview or guest blog. The more expensive, longer tours will require more posts and information. You are then given a tour page and schedule. Here's mine. As you can see, the tour ran from April 7th to 30th with links each day to the site where my work was featured. To get the most out of the tour, each day you see where you are featured and share the link through your various social media outlets.

The Good: 

  • Most of the reviews were positive and some of the bloggers go the extra mile to post their reviews on Amazon, not just on their own site. 
  • Pump Up Your Book made some phenomenal ad graphics that went out on Twitter during the tour. 
  • Internet buzz, meaning increased mentions of my name and book titles, translates to better internet rankings for both my books and my site. 

The Not-So-Good:

  • That buzz doesn't necessarily translate to an increase in sales. 
  • Some tour stops are identical, meaning on Thursday, a blog features my bio, cover and synopsis. Then on Friday, a different blog features my bio, cover and synopsis. It's hard to promote these stops to followers if you're showing them the same thing you showed them yesterday.
  • Some (but not all) of the blogs (ie tour stops) are very amateurish sites which make you question whether you really want them to "feature" you.

So, the big question... was it worth it? Yes. I gained genuine fans along the way, a few critical and insightful reviews, and I'm a firm believer in trying everything (when it comes to marketing) at least once. Will I do it again? Probably not, but PUYB was fun to work with and I'm glad I had the experience.

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