If you are touring your book it’s essential to be a gracious virtual
guest. Now, some of you writers may be wondering why learning
about all this is necessary. Simple, an important aspect of writing
is promotion – creating a platform and visibility. If no one knows
you’re out there, how will you become rich and famous, right?
Okay, we all know that the likelihood of that is slim, most writers
don’t become rich and famous, but you still need to become
known in your own arena. This is accomplished through
promotion. One promotional strategy is virtual tours.
Virtual tours provide an avenue to showcase you and your work.
Writers with blogs feature a guest. Maybe the guest wants to
promote his freelance abilities, his expertness in a particular area,
or his books. Whatever the case, virtual tours is a great means to
do this. Since the host is going out of his way to feature you, what
should you do to show your appreciation and make the event a
Steps to Take to be a Gracious Guest
1. This is probably the most important step: Make sure your
content, the information you provide to your host, is fresh, up to
date, and interesting. What does this mean? If you were hosted a
week ago by another writer, try not to use the same exact
information. If you do, it’s not the end of the world because each
blogger has his own readers, groups, and promotional strategies,
so it’s likely the same readers won’t see it twice in such close
succession, but it’s highly advisable to try and avoid it.
To sidetrack a bit here, as the manager of a group of authors who
use cross-promotion to increase visibility and readership, I’ve paid
attention to what works and what doesn’t. Having something
entertaining, interesting, or informative is key to attracting
readers/visitors to your tour or your site.
2. Communicate with your host. Make sure you understand what
your host expects and needs. Not all bloggers host in the same
way. One host may want to do an interview, one may want an in
depth bio, one may want an article, one may expect pure promo
content, and so on.
3. Make sure you send your content within the time frame your
host states. It’s kind of like being invited for dinner and showing
up late — don’t do it. And, be sure you send everything your host
will need. Sending it in drips and drabs is another no-no.
4. Promote, Promote, Promote the tour. This is another very
important aspect of touring. While your host should also be
promoting the tour, it is your guest spot. The whole idea behind
doing tours is to increase your visibility. You can’t do this without
One basic strategy is to announce the tour to your social networks
and writing groups get the word out.
5. During the tour stop by your host’s site at least a couple of times
throughout the day. And, if you have the time, it would be nice to
stop by once the next day to answer any questions from
commenters who may have visited late. You should also thank the
commenters for taking the time to leave a comment.
6. Thank your host.
That’s about it. A finale note though: remember to pay it forward.
When a writer is looking for someone to host him, step forward!
Karen Cioffi is an author, ghostwriter, and freelance writer. For
writing and marketing information visit KarenCioffi.com,
(http://karencioffi.com) and sign up for her free newsletter, A
Writer’s World; you’ll get 2 free e-books on writing and marketing
in the process and two more free e-books just for stopping
Author, ghostwriter, freelance writer,
Acquisitions Editor Intern with 4RV Publishing
KarenCioffi Writing for Children and More