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Discussion Starter #1
For those of you who've worked with blog tour companies, who would you recommend? What were your experiences like?

I'm not going to name any names, but I recently did a blog tour and was very disappointed. Not much communication from the blog tour owner, and the blogs themselves seemed really sub-par. Most of them appeared to exist solely to post "interviews" from the blog tour company, and there was no interaction at all with readers. One of the blogs was even locked down to "invite only," so I couldn't see my post, let alone comment on it! And the one place that was supposed to post a review didn't, apparently because the blog owner was really behind on her reviews (which I understand can happen, but still...).

Anyway, I'm leery of going down this road again without some recommendations from people I trust (namely, all you helpful KB-ers!).

I write fantasy romance, sf romance, and paranormal romance, if that helps narrow it down.

Thanks!
 

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I posted a thread like this several months ago, and I never got much response on it, so I'll be eager to see if anyone chimes in with a good experience.

My own experience with  my October/November blog tour mirrored your own. Many of the blogs were sub-par, they "guaranteed" ten reviews out of twenty blog stops (I think I actually got six "reviews" although most were about twenty or thirty words long and looked like they had read my blurb instead of my book) and overall the lack of communication was pretty appalling.

I'd be willing to pay more to get more, but I'm just not sure where to turn.
 

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I worked with Goddess Fish Promotions last year and am signed up with them again for a tour starting in a couple weeks. I found them to be highly professional in communications and they checked every day to see that the scheduled blog had posted. That being said, some of the blogs they work with do have a considerable following and others are fairly new, so you may get a mix of activity. Last time I did a full Virtual Book Tour, but that turned out to be a bit too time intensive, having to write so many posts, so this time I just signed up for a Blurb Blitz.

Here's their info.: http://www.goddessfish.com/tours.htm
 

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While I haven't worked with any as an author yet, I've worked with quite a few tour companies as a blogger. The ones I most respect and look forward to getting emails from are...

http://www.xpressobooktours.com/ - Very clean and professional looking tour banners, quick to answer questions, usually touring titles I'm interested in reading
http://bewitchingbooktours.blogspot.ca/ - High volume of tours, easy to work with, well known
http://www.candacesbookblog.com/2012/08/cbb-book-promotions-now-open-and.html - Blogging friend of mine, very friendly and does a great job of getting you interested in the titles she's touring

PS- How do you make text links, rather than needing to post the full URL?
 

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I've worked with a few authors who have had fairly successful blog tours by doing it themselves. The main caveat is that you have to have enough of a writer following to get some volunteers. Ideally, those volunteers write in your same genre or otherwise have compatible audiences.

One of the authors who I thought did a particularly good job was Tracy Falbe. She managed the tour mostly through her blog. She posted about her "Feel Real Fantasy Blog Tour" event with dates and the guest posts she wanted to do. Other fantasy authors (including me) volunteered to host a date. She ran a RaffleCopter giveaway as part of her event too.

If you want to check out what she did, here's the post that started it all:
Add a giveaway to your blog - Join the Feel Real Fantasy Blog Tour

Here's the "landing page" she set up for it:
Feel Real Fantasy Blog Tour

Here she promoted the giveaway and the final list of blog tour stops:
Enter to win a $25 Etsy gift card during the Feel Real Fantasy blog tour

This was her final "and thanks for all the fish" post:
Reflections on my finished blog tour

It's a lot of work, of course, and helping you avoid that work is what makes touring companies valuable. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the feedback so far -- I'm taking notes. :)

DRMarvello, that sounds very effective, but yeah, I'm sort of looking for someone else to handle the logistics. Between running my own company and putting out four full-length books per year, I just don't have time for all that!
 

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ChristinePope said:
DRMarvello, that sounds very effective, but yeah, I'm sort of looking for someone else to handle the logistics. Between running my own company and putting out four full-length books per year, I just don't have time for all that!
I hear ya. Like most things, you need either time or money. If you've got the money, outsourcing is usually the best option for productivity.
 

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ChristinePope said:
For those of you who've worked with blog tour companies, who would you recommend? What were your experiences like?

I'm not going to name any names, but I recently did a blog tour and was very disappointed. Not much communication from the blog tour owner, and the blogs themselves seemed really sub-par. Most of them appeared to exist solely to post "interviews" from the blog tour company, and there was no interaction at all with readers. One of the blogs was even locked down to "invite only," so I couldn't see my post, let alone comment on it! And the one place that was supposed to post a review didn't, apparently because the blog owner was really behind on her reviews (which I understand can happen, but still...).

Anyway, I'm leery of going down this road again without some recommendations from people I trust (namely, all you helpful KB-ers!).

I write fantasy romance, sf romance, and paranormal romance, if that helps narrow it down.

Thanks!
I think you'll run into this (at least some of the time) with any tour. I've used three tour companies (PM for details on how it went) but I host for Xpresso, SupuGurl, I Am A Reader Not A Writer, and Bookish Brunette on my blog. http://newadultaddiction.blogspot.com/

Giselle from Xpresso also did a blog design for me, ( http://cleanteenreads.blogspot.com/ ) she's professional, knows what she's doing, quick, and always on time. If I had her genre (YA mostly), I'd definitely use her for tours because she's got some very high quality blogs on her list. AND EDIT TO ADD: she, herself, is one of the powerhouse book bloggers with her Xpresso reads blog: http://www.xpressoreads.com/ It helps, ya know.
 

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Hey, Christine! I can add another kudo for Bewitching Book Tours. http://bewitchingbooktours.blogspot.ca/ Roxanne was incredibly helpful, as it was my first tour. I did the month long, and ended up with 4 reviews for a brand new book (the first in my series) and a blog stop nearly every day of that month. She also let me know if there was an issue with the blogger. Exhausting, but fun!

~Cate
 

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Can I piggyback off of this post? I've always organized my own blog tours in the past (to the extent I did any), but I might want to hire it out in the future, so can anyone recommend a good one for YA, particularly contemporary/realistic YA?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
T.L. Haddix said:
I getting ready to embark on a blog tour through Red Adept.

Here's the URL for the tour: http://redadeptselect.com/the-firefly-tour/

I've got to find the link to the main tour page, where you find information about doing them. It's one of "those" days, though.

I'm excited, and pretty impressed so far. There are a good number of stops, and the communication with the tour coordinator has been good. As to the effectiveness of the tour, I don't know - I will let you know and keep you updated. I'm thinking it will be good exposure, though.
I found the link for anyone who's interested:

http://redadeptpublishing.com/red-adept-journeys/

Unfortunately, they won't take books that aren't the first book in a series (unless they did a tour for the first book as well), so that won't work for what I'm looking for. But the package does sound really impressive!

cate dean said:
Hey, Christine! I can add another kudo for Bewitching Book Tours. http://bewitchingbooktours.blogspot.ca/ Roxanne was incredibly helpful, as it was my first tour. I did the month long, and ended up with 4 reviews for a brand new book (the first in my series) and a blog stop nearly every day of that month. She also let me know if there was an issue with the blogger. Exhausting, but fun!

~Cate
Thanks, Cate! That definitely sounds like one company I need to look into a little more closely.
 
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