Thanks Hazel for hosting me today! My name is Kai Strand and I’m the author of the newly released middle grade fantasy adventure, BEWARE OF THE WHITE. Hazel asked me to share my top 10 marketing tips. That is a surprisingly huge topic! Because I am in the middle of a virtual book tour, I thought I’d focus my tips on virtual tours.
There are plenty of really good companies you can hire to organize a book tour for you. Yet it is also possible to organize a tour yourself. It’s a lot more work, of course, but a tour is going to be time consuming regardless of who organizes it. Like I always tell my kids, “If you are going to do something, do it well. It’s just a waste of time if you only do it half-baked.” So whatever your decision, give it your all.
Here are my top 10 Tips for Marketing with a Virtual Book Tour
1. Talk about things that are not your book – like editing, working with small presses, or marketing.
2. Vary the content of similar posts so that readers who follow the tour won’t get board. As an example, if you have several hosts willing to post book spotlights for you, include the standards; blurb, book cover, author bio, but then tailor a paragraph for each posting. Think about the audience of the blog it will be posted on and share something about your book that will resonate with that audience.
3. Don’t give a million copies of your book away. Only give books to people who you believe will review it and have a platform for and understanding of posting a review (blog, or Amazon, Goodreads, Barnes and Noble) and only a limited amount of “Congrats, you won the book” giveaways.
4. Speaking of giveaways, they’re fun! Organize a giveaway with book related prizes and/or gift certs. For my newest release I went so far as to develop and sew a stuffed animal of one of the creatures from my book, a Molly. How fun is that? Unique, huggable. And my very talented daughter drew a Traveler – another creature that is now framed art.
5. Encourage readers to follow your social media venues (Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads) by rewarding them with points in your giveaway.
6. Reward the hosts of your tour by offering points to readers who follow their blogs or social media sites. Hosts will be more likely to ask you back if you boost their readership. As an example, there is an easy entry into my giveaway for all of you who follow Hazel Nutt on Facebook.
7. Engage with the readers. Nothing is more off-putting that following a tour and the author never shows up to the stops.
8. Promote, promote, promote! Share the news everywhere you can that you are on tour. Other writers will understand when they see you talking about it over and over again so don’t worry about ‘bothering them’. Be engaging and change up your message. Don’t just say, follow my tour. Follow my tour. Follow my tour.
9. Engage family and friends and fans to help you spread the news. Don’t just ask, “Can you tweet my tour when you get a chance?” Actually send them possible tweets they can copy and paste that include your Twitter handle and shortened links to interviews or reviews, i.e.: Natures Spirits, the Underworld and the death tribe. When death is your business can you be defeated? BEWARE OF THE WHITE #mg by @KaiStrand. Or send an email explaining what you want your Facebook messages to accomplish; increase tour following, increase Goodreads presence or sell copies of books – be sure your street team knows the message you want to convey.
10. Have fun. Visiting new blogs is a unique opportunity for you to reach out to new readers. You make a happy reader by writing a good book. You make a lasting fan by being approachable and human, so be sure to take the time to really enjoy what you are doing.
To celebrate the launch of BEWARE OF THE WHITE, I’m giving away three book related prize packages, so be sure to enter my giveaway. There is still time to pick up a copy of the book, read and post a review to earn the most points possible! Don’t miss any fast and furious SPONTANEOUS GIVEAWAYS! Only virtual stalkers who follow my tour closely will have an opportunity to win those.
About the book
As is tradition, Terra learns on the Saturday past her twelfth birthday that she is a Natures Spirit. It is her legacy to serve in the peaceful underground city of Concord. Learning she is named in a prophecy and being threatened by the leader of the death tribe…that part breaks tradition.
The Trepidus are the death janitors of the Underworld, responsible for delivering fatalities with a smile and cleaning up after themselves until Blanco, recent leader of the Trepidus, decides the day of reckoning for his species is coming. He begins organizing the creatures and leads them toward an uprising. The prophecy says there is one person who can stop him. Terra.
With Spirit of Security, Frank, protecting her, Terra attempts to complete her training and discover her Spirit talents. Together, they go on a rogue investigation to learn how to defeat Blanco. In the end, it comes down to a battle of the minds. The future of Concord is at stake. Will Blanco, the older, more experienced being win? Or will Terra, the young, new Spirit earn back the peace of the city?
Or look for it on iTunes
About the author
Kai Strand writes fiction for kids and teens. Her debut novel, The Weaver, was a finalist in the 2012 EPIC eBook Awards. She is a (very lucky) wife and the mother of four amazing kids. The most common sound in her household is laughter. The second most common is, “Do your dishes!” She and her family hike, geocache, and canoe in beautiful Central Oregon, where they call home.
To find out more about Kai’s books, download companion documents, find links to her published short stories and discover all the places to find Kai both virtually and in person, visit her website: www.kaistrand.com. She loves to hear from readers, so feel free to send her an email or visit her facebook page, Kai Strand, Author.