Image by: Anonymous Collective
By Josie Alexander
A blog tour is a great promotional tool for women who run their own business, especially if it is an online business like Etsy or if you are a writer. Just like a “book tour”, a blog tour consists of you promoting your products or services on various high profile blogs in your market.
Let’s go over some tips on how to successfully run a blog tour for yourself and various options that you have for blog tours.
#1) Why a Blog Tour?
As I said before, blog tours are promotional tools. A blog tour can help you expand your audience and your reach, promote your brand, promote new products, gain an audience (if you didn’t have one before), etc.
As far as marketing is concerned, blog tours are an extremely cost effective way to get your name out there. Depending on if you are managing it yourself or if you hire a company to manage it for you, you will spend more time in interviews than you will spending money.
There are different types of blog tours. Some require that you write entire blog posts for the websites and blogs. Some require that you answer and write down certain questions. Some require that you interview with the blogger via Skype, phone, or e-mail (and she will write up the blog post).
Blog tours are most effective if you have a heavy internet fan-base. Consider these statistics from Blogging.org to see if a blog tour would benefit you.
The average reader is about 41 years old, and the median age is 38 years. On average, 45% of blog readers are female and 55% are male readers and 46% of people read blogs more than once a day. HubSpot Science of Blogging stated that most people read anywhere from 5 – 10 blogs on a regular basis. According to SocialMediaToday,
“81% of US consumers trust advice and information from blogs…61% of US consumers have made a purchase based on a blog post…37% of marketers believe blogs are the most important type of content marketing.”
60% of businesses have a business or company blog online right now. The biggest business blogs online right now are NBC, TED, TechCrunch, and Mashable. They get (on average) about 528,000,000 monthly page views.
HubSpot State of Inbound Marketing stated that 81% of marketers rated their blog as useful or better. Imagine not only having your blog as helpful, but tapping into other successful blogs as well.
Statistics show that a potential customer needs to see a product at least three times before she considers buying it. This is another platform for you.
JA Konrath, Rachel Thompson, Bob Mayer, Terri Giuliano Long and Melissa Foster are all successful businesswomen and writers who have had success with blog tours. If you look at their statistics, they have various ways of connecting with their customers and readers. However, they are extremely active when it comes to blog tours.
#2) Do I Have to Organize it Myself?
No, you don’t; you can hire someone to manage your blog tour for you. There are a number of companies that will handle your blog tour for you. They will find high profile blogs for your to work with and find the best fit for you.
If you’re a writer, looking to promote your new book via blog tour check out Media Guests, which is a marketing and publicity firm that specializes in all forms of PR including blog tours, which are all the rage in the literary world. PVJ Blog Tours is also a great resource if you need experienced people to run your blog tour for you.
#3) How Do I Attract an Audience?
Image by: Mohammad Jangda
If you are managing your blog tour for yourself, you will need to do your homework. Look at the blogs that you are considering. What is their readership made of? Is that your target market?
Have specific goals in mind before you book your tour. Is your goal to get people talking about your product before it comes out? Are you going to give away promotional items? Do you want to link people back to your site (are you trying to get more page hits)? Or are you trying to get people talking about your product after it has been released?
Have these goals in mind when you choose what type of tour you want to go on. Most tours last between 1 – 6 weeks. Make sure that you can put forth the time and effort for it. If you are considering your first blog tour, lean toward 1 week first.
Cast a wide net. Think about various aspects of your product and company before you start scouting for blogs. Where are you based out of? Are there local blogs that you can contact? Are you the culinary business? Look at blogs that have to do with produce, cooking, “foodie” blogs, restaurants, mom blogs, dating sites, etc. Do you cater to business events? Can you contact local business blogs?
Market your marketing effort. Make waves about your blog tour. Talk about it. Give it a clever name. Post dates and details on your Facebook, Twitter, tumblr, and website.
Wax poetic and be eloquent. Remember that you are selling your brand, your company, your product, and yourself as you write the answers to interview questions or as you write these blog posts.
If you would like to know more about blog tours, check out Secrets to a Successful Blog Tour by Donna Huber (who was the publicist for “Fifty Shades of Grey”).