How Should I Market My Book?

It appears yet another week has pretty well blown by. The aftermath of one holiday behind us and another upon us. I have been entertained by comments here lately left on blog posts. Some of them are more entertaining than my posts, some a little cryptic and others worth deleting. I do think of the blog as a conversation so I encourage discussion.

With the relaunch of Firetok imminent, I have been asking for help from my friends with the "what next?" steps. I have seen so many different outfits promising book promotion, I don't even know where to start. One of these suggestions is a blog tour. Which led me to my second question.

What is a blog tour? I think as an author I take my book to company X and sign up for their "tour". In one of many variations let's say they have a list of 100 hot book blogs signed up in their network. They put my book out to all of them and a certain amount of them are interested in the book. For this hypothetical I paid for a package which included 10 stops over 5 days. My book gets featured on 10 blogs over the course of 5 days and I just paid some amount of money for the opportunity. It is all more than a little fuzzy so don't read this as me putting myself out as an expert, it is actually quite the opposite. I may be totally wrong but the dozens I have already looked at have about these many similarities. First hand knowledge tells me the traffic each site has is way more important than anything else. This could be a gold mine of publicity... or then it could not...depending on the traffic the blog generates. I have a test blog which has zero traffic, I use it for "testing" stuff. I can list your book there for 10 bucks. There obviously are many other blogs which could be a major score. I would like to know what I am I really getting here for my money? I am not being cynical, seriously. Some of the outfits promise a specific number of blogs for your money. One I looked at was going to charge 99 dollars with only the vague suggestion of "we have no idea how many blogs might be interested in your book, but you sure as hell aren't getting your money back one way or another." Instead of this particular service I took a handful of dollar bills and made it rain out the car window on the way to work. It generated 0 blog spots and I am guaranteed I will never see one of the bills again. For the most part it seemed like marketing money well spent.

As I watched the bills flutter around in the rearview mirror I thought about putting the word out and asking for suggestions. Plenty of people read this blog, and I thank you wholeheartedly for that. I am putting out a call for suggestions. Not just on blog tours but what worked for you. What got the word out about your book to the right audience especially. Here is where I think I need to add my typical caveat. We need to be under the horror umbrella. One thing I think I have learned is the importance of putting your book in front of people who are at least inclined to your type of story. In this case it is Fiction + Supernatural = Horror.

Let's get back to how to market your book. I briefly discussed my ignorance of a blog tour; social media marketing is definitely a deep pit' I have even been suggested to use a PR firm. One of my favorite suggestions was to "blog like a tugboat on fire and hope for the lovely virus." I just haven't quite figured out how to implement it yet. Another critical aspect are reviews, in my case Amazon reviews. If you have found a method which works to get people to write those all important nuggets of Amazonian gold, please do tell.

Please let me know what has worked and not worked for you. It doesn't need to be a blog tour or anything I have already mentioned, just what worked for you. I don't mind if it is a really convincing article you read or a dream you had, let's talk about it. I realize I am opening the door to advertising here but if it is legit I want to hear about it.

Please leave a comment with your email address, or send me a tweet, lets talk. or @gordona_wilson.