Before the Tour Begins:
What does a blog tour entail?
Other Worlds Ink (OWI) contacts our lists of bloggers (some of whom review, as well) who cover your genre, and invites them to sign-up to host a blog tour stop and/or review for the purpose of marketing your release. OWI compiles your completed materials and creates packets specific to each blogger. The OWI packet that we send to bloggers consists of:
- Press Kit
- Book cover*
- Up to 2 banners to be distributed to all bloggers*
- Up to 4 memes to be distributed to all bloggers*
- ARCs (when applicable)
- All unique posts that you put together.
Then we distribute these packets to bloggers so they can create your blog tour stop on the date they signed-up for.
*Note: If you want to provide custom graphics beyond these standard images, please contact email@example.com for more details and pricing.
When should I begin my blog tour?
Before embarking on a blog tour, you’ll want to know the firm release date of the book. In order to give your tour the best chance to succeed, a minimum of one month is required (from the date we receive your completed Blog Tour Info Form). The more lead time we have, the better. Blogs start to fill up a month or more in advance (two months or more at the holidays) and it can be hard to get you placement in the bigger blogs if the lead time is too short. The sooner all of the materials are submitted to us, the sooner we can distribute your tour materials to the bloggers for them to prepare your tour stops.
What types of materials are needed for my blog tour and how do I submit them to OWI?
Below is a list of materials that we’ll need submitted in order to manage your blog tour. When you have the following items ready to send us, use the Book Tour Info Form to submit the materials. You can see the information we will request from you here.
We encourage you to email us any questions you may have and we’ll do our best to provide you with information that is complete and user-friendly.
When should I start the tour in relation to the book release? (does not apply to publisher-purchased tours)
Typically, blog tours start on release day to have the most impact as the book hits the market. It’s not a hard and fast rule, however. You can start it earlier or later. The main rule of thumb – don’t start your tour until you will have pre-order or buy links, so people can take action if they like the book.
The Tour Process:
What is the difference between a standalone book and a series?
A standalone book is a book that is complete in and of itself. A series is a collection of related books under the same series name.
What kinds of series are there?
A series can either be a linked series (i.e: you need to read all the books in order because the story and characters flow from one to another) or a shared universe/loosely linked series, where all the books occur in the same “world,” but often focus on different sets of characters. In a shared universe series, there may still be certain characters who appear in multiple books, but each story can be read as a stand-alone.
What is a book blurb?
A book blurb is a short (a paragraph or two), high level recap of the book that conveys the set-up and introduces the characters, but does not give away any spoilers.
What is a series blurb?
A series blurb is a synopsis (a paragraph or two) of the entire book series.
What is the difference between non-exclusive and exclusive excerpts?
A non-exclusive excerpt is a selection from the book (of your choosing) that offers the reader a taste of the book without giving away too much. Non-exclusive excerpts are distributed to every blogger who signs up for your tour. It’s non-exclusive because it will appear on multiple blogs across the web.
An exclusive excerpt is a selection from the book that is distributed specifically to one individual blogger to use to promote your book during the tour. See “unique content” below.
What is a unique post?
A unique post is a written work that is supplied to one blogger for their exclusive use during the tour – this is often preferred for SEO (Search Engine Optimization) purposes. In other words, Google likes it when a blog post is unique. Examples of unique posts are an exclusive excerpt from your book, an interview with the author or a character(s), a guest post that you write with background or history of writing your book, creating characters, the setting, the tone of the book, your writing process, etc. We provide interview questions and other ideas for your unique posts.
How many unique posts will I need to come up with?
This varies by tour, but in our experience, on a two week tour it’s helpful to begin with 8 unique posts. We strongly suggest that you start putting together unique posts right away so that you don’t have to scramble at the midnight hour to compile all the unique posts in one sitting.
How long should each unique post be?
Generally speaking, 500-1000 words, but that’s not a hard-and-fast rule. Exclusive excerpts, guest posts, interviews, etc that are less than 500 words or a little over 1000 words will still work out well.
What are ARCs?
An ARC (Advance Review Copy) is an almost-finished of your book – usually created at the end of the editing process but sometime before the final book is released – to allow reviewers time to read it before the release date. ARCs are distributed to bloggers who elect to review your book. Bloggers understand that the ARC is not final and edits/changes may still be incorporated before the book is published, but the ARC is complete enough to allow bloggers to fairly review the work.
Will every blogger review my book?
Some bloggers will sign-up to review your book, and in most cases the reviews are posted. But in some cases, the blogger may be unable to write a review for various reasons. Some bloggers will also sign up to review your book at a later date (this is called “Review When Ready”).
Can I opt out of the book review option?
Yes. There is a comment box at the end of the Book Tour Info Form where you can note “No reviews for this title.”
What are Buy Links?
Buy links are the links to various retailers (like Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, etc) who will carry and sell your book. Buy links are included in the blogger’s tour stop of your book for easy access for the reader to make a purchase while reading about your book.
What kind of images should I submit and what size should they be?
The book cover, first and foremost. However, bloggers appreciate receiving extra artwork such as banners and memes because the graphics help bring your book alive visually. Send us large, hi-resolution jpg files – we’ll size them as appropriate. Our target cover size is 600 pixels wide x 900 pixels high, so your cover and other images should be at least that wide.
Is a giveaway required?
A giveaway is not required, but a giveaway is a great way to catch the attention of blog readers. Our experience is that readers respond well to a gift card giveaway (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, etc). The denomination is up to you, $20-$50 is common. As part of the giveaway process, we ask readers to subscribe to your email list, which is another avenue for you to beef up your list.
How many banners and memes should I submit?
We will distribute up to 2 banners and up to 4 memes. If you’d like OWI to create your banners and memes, please email firstname.lastname@example.org for details and pricing.
Note: If you want to provide custom graphics beyond the standard 2 banners, 4 memes, please contact email@example.com for more details and pricing.
How will I know when to submit materials to you?
Once your order has been received, we’ll email you the link to the Book Tour Info Form which requests all the materials necessary for the tour. We understand that all materials may not be available when you fill out the Book Tour Info Form, but the more completed material we have up-front the less chance of things falling through the cracks. Your unique posts will be due later, once we have the tour filled up. However, we highly recommend you start putting together some unique posts right away so that you don’t have to scramble at the last moment to finish them.
After the Tour:
What will happen once the tour is over?
We will send you an email to let you know that your tour is complete. Bloggers who signed up to “Review When Ready” will be reviewing your book after the tour ends so you may want to keep an eye on those blogs. We will also send you the contest winner (if you did one) and the email sign-ups. And we’ll ask you if you would mind writing us a testimonial. 🙂