Guest Post by Karen Cioffi

       Being a Gracious Virtual Host
       By Karen Cioffi
       Virtual tours are becoming commonplace, yet it seems not all
       participants are aware of the etiquette involved. To enlighten
       some and remind others, it might be a good idea to go over some
       of the basics of being a gracious and proficient virtual host. For
       those who may be unsure as to what a virtual host is, I’m talking
       specifically about hosts of virtual author/book tours.
       Here’s a brief description of a virtual book tour: A virtual book
       tour is a promotional strategy to create visibility for the author
       and his book. Writers, and others, with blogs promote the author
       by featuring him and his work on their blogs.
       I manage a group of authors in a cross-promotional group and as
       part of our marketing strategy we have monthly virtual tours.
       While each guest does not always focus entirely on his/her book
       (which I call “pure promo”), no matter what the guest decides to
       offer it is up to the host to present it in a ‘special feature kind of
       light,’ especially when utilizing cross-promotion.
       You might be asking, why is it especially important when in a
       cross-promotion venture. Well, it’s because you are also the
       recipient of being featured. Another host is going out of his way to
       present you and your work in a manner that will:
            Attract readers

            Make your content appear fresh and interesting

            Include images (author and book cover)

            Lead visitors to click on the Learn More About link

            If a book is being featured, make it appear inviting enough to
              hopefully warrant the reader to click on the Buy link
       So as most of us were taught growing up: Do unto others as you
       would have them do unto you!
       Now on to what makes a gracious host:
           Communicate with your guest. Ask what he would like to
           Include Steps 1-5 above
           PROMOTE your post. This means posting messages in your
            groups/forums, on Twitter, and other social networks
           Make sure visitors will find it easy to leave a comment
           Stop by throughout the day of the post to respond to
           Thank your guest for being there
           This is very important: do not publish another post on the day
            you are featuring a guest, it would be inconsiderate.

       Please note: Number 7 does not apply if your promotion and links
       are directing traffic directly to your guest’s post. It only applies if
       your link goes to your blog page, not a specific post.

       Karen Cioffi is an author, ghostwriter, and freelance writer. For
       writing and marketing information visit,
       ( 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 by.
       Karen Cioffi-Ventrice
       Author, ghostwriter, freelance writer,
       Acquisitions Editor Intern with 4RV Publishing
       KarenCioffi Writing for Children and More


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