So, here it is ...
Okay, so I'm not (too) poor but I'm not rich either. I'm on a budget. And like anyone on a budget, public relations sometimes seems to be a challenge. But not if you get creative.
My new (6th) book is out this month - "The Everything Blogging Book" - and because it was a "work-for-hire" project instead of a regular book deal like my previous books, there is no budget for promoting the book other than their already established formula.
1. No book tour
2. No promotional materials
3. No financial support if I do anything to promote the book
I can live with this because I've had to personally promote my previous books after the first few weeks of publication anyway - that is just how the book publishing industry works. Books are promoted for a few weeks and unless something totally unusual happens (accidentally get on Oprah, for instance), most book publisher publicists move on to the next book without looking back.
So what does a gal with a book do to get the word about about her book? Well, since the book is about blogging, someone suggested that I do a "virtual book tour" to promote my book on other blogs and Web sites. I wish I could claim this idea as my own, but I'm woman enough to admit it came from another. Unfortunately now I cannot remember who or I'd give them kudos and credit.
"The Everything Blogging Book" is not rocket science explained. It is an easy-to-understand guide to using and creating blogs for personal and professional gain. It is part of "The Everything" series of how-to books by Adams Media.
The audience for the book is anyone who doesn't really yet get the blogging thing but it may also be a fast, fun read for someone with more blogging experience. I've included quotes from a variety of bloggers throughout the book to add their diverse voices. I also
mention a ton of blogs throughout the text so it is a great way to find new and unexpected blogs.
How did I do "The Tour"?
I love blogs and I love email. Setting up the tour consisted of the following:
1. Email everyone I mentioned in my blog book and ask them if they'd like to be a part of the tour. Also invite other bloggers and Web publishers to be a part of it.
2. Either participate in a Q&A composed by the blogger or write a guest blog post, tailored specifically for the host blog.
Over the course of August, I will add new virtual book tour "appearances" to my official book blog at http://everythingblogbook.typepad.com where I also archive links to each participating blog. And I'm promoting the tour on my other blogs/sites where appropriate.
I also did a quickie press release through PRWeb to announce the tour.
Total Cost for this:
$40 for PRWeb ... and a few hours of my time.
Have I changed the world with this virtual blog book tour? Of course not. I'm sure I'm not the first to do this and not the last. Have I sold more books because of it? Well, that remains to be seen but ultimately, I had to determine my major goal for this tactic. It was
not to sell more books because frankly, on a work for hire book project, you rarely see royalties.
My main motivation for getting out there to promote the book was to get back out there. I've been on a bit of a hiatus, I'm living in Alaska so am far removed from most things, and I wanted to let people know I'm still alive and kicking, still doing some Internet stuff. So the tour will certainly help me accomplish this more modest goal.
I love the Internet. I love blogging. And I couldn't think of a better way to promote a book, get exposure and make connections than hop, skip and jump to blogs around the world!