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February 03, 2021

New Release Marketing Conclusions / IWSG


The Insecure Writer's Support Group is a safe place for insecure writers of all kinds.

New Release Marketing Conclusions:

Last month, I had a new release: A FIGHTING CHANCE. I did a lot for this release. And I mean A LOT. Rather than hash out my marketing plan here, you can visit my guest post at Victoria Marie Lee's blog.

What I want to share here are the results of my marketing. This post is long. If you want, you can skip to the conclusion.


BLOG TOUR: Now, many would think I'm crazy and that it's counter-productive to pay for a blog tour service while also orchestrating your own blog tour. They may be right, but I had reasons why I combined the efforts of a blog tour service with my own efforts. More visibility, for one. Two, I'm trying to figure out what formula works best for me...how to run future releases.

MY EFFORTS: I approached 10 specific bloggers for guest posts, and then I opened a Google form for my other fellow bloggers to sign up to participate in my blog tour. For those sign-ups, I had pre-made questions they could choose from or they could ask their own question.

I loved the question format. It made it so much easier to write guest posts by answering questions. Even the 10 guest posts I did have ideas for, I struggled to actually write them, so I treated those as questions, too. And voila!

GRATITUDE: I would like to take the moment to thank EVERYONE who signed up to my blog tour for A Fighting Chance. You all are amazingly supportive. I couldn't ask for a better blogging community or blogging friends. By the way, the winner of my blog tour participation giveaway (for a  $5.00 eGift card) was Mason. Congrats!

XPRESSO BOOK TOURS:

For Frozen Crimes last year, I signed up for a one-week BOOK BLITZ with Xpresso Book Tours and did my own blog tour on top of it. I talk about my experience in this IWSG post: Paid Book Blitz Results. Overall, it was a success. The giveaway (which I created and hosted myself) did phenomenal. I also saw a lot of activity on Twitter and Instagram and had 63 bloggers post on their blogs.

EXPENSE SIDE NOTE: Someone had commented on my post that it sounded expensive for little return. I didn't mention the price in my post, although I linked to the Xpresso Book Tours service page. I will say now that I paid $90 USD for a one-week blitz. That price is FAR MORE affordable than other blog tour services for the same length of time. It was my first time paying for such a service, but looking back now...it was worth it.


SILVER DAGGER BOOK TOURS:

For A Fighting Chance, I tried out Silver Dagger Book Tours. With this service you can pay the owner anything at the end of the tour, whatever you feel is reasonable for the services rendered. I signed up for a three-week tour.

You have to have a giveaway for this service, and I let the owner create and host it. I wish I had done it instead, because this giveaway did not produce the sort of results I'd been hoping for, unlike the giveaway I did during Frozen Crimes' release. It even performed under giveaways I'd done that did not have a blog tour service improving their reach. This giveaway required entrants to post a comment to unlock the rest of the entry points, which I think stopped a lot of people from entering or doing more after that (like subscribing/following). And then there were entries that I normally don't include that I think were used more than the ones I cared about (for example: the giveaway was tweeted about A LOT.)


THE STATS: Instead of repeating the stats for my blitz with Xpresso, you can check out my previously mentioned post here and compare the numbers.


Silver Dagger Stats:

Sign-Ups: 41

Bloggers Who Posted: 37

NOTE: With my own efforts, I had 31 tour stops.


Giveaway Results:

Bookbub Followers: 10

Newsletter Subscribers: 10

YouTube Subscribers: 0

Facebook Group Requests: 6

Goodreads Follows: 10

NOTE: I didn't include the numbers for Twitter or Instagram because I don't worry about those socials.


BLOG TOUR CONCLUSIONS:

1. Create and host my giveaways myself.

2. Guest posts formatted as questions are super easy to write.

3. Continue to approach 10 specific bloggers (different bloggers for different books/genres) to host me for a guest post. (Or for my mom if it's a release for her.)

4. If I have the means, I will use Xpresso Book Tour's one-week blitz option. And instead of opening up sign-ups for my tour on my blog, I'll point my beloved fellow bloggers to Xpresso Book Tours sign-up form.

5. HOWEVER, for my mom's releases I will try Silver Dagger Book Tours because they accept all age ranges (including middle grade and children's picture books), unlike Xpresso Book Tours. I will be testing this out soon and will share the results afterward.


Since this post is already long, I'll share my experience with having a free eBook during my blog tour in my March IWSG post.


*~*


Our December/January/February reads are…

Ghost Light by Joseph O'Connor, a book written in second person. This is a great chance to explore something new.

Preparing to Write Settings that Feel Like Characters by J Lenni Dorner. 
This will be our writing craft book, with a focus on settings.


Discussion Day for both books will be February 24, 2021!




QUESTION: What have you been up to?


68 comments:

  1. Interesting data! I've only done 1 blog tour - with Mason Canyon - and it was great. Lots of exposure for my first book.
    I haven't done any promoting of my last few releases except for buying a newsletter slot. One of these days I'll get to promoting more but I'd like to have my 2nd series up and about before that. Which means I need to write it... :)

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    1. I do love the exposure that these paid blog tour services provide. :)

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  2. Mason Canyon does great tours for authors.

    Silver Daggers is reasonable since you pay what you feel it's worth. Combining a paid tour with your own is best as it covers the most ground.

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    1. I do know about Mason's blog tour services. :)

      It's rare to have a service like this that you choose the payment. I think it's really neat and helpful for writers with little to no budget.

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  3. I'm glad it went well. Congrats again on your release. :-)

    Anna from elements of emaginette

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  4. Good to hear the tour went well. I've only used a service once and I tend to do better organizing my own.

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  5. Thank you for sharing your experiences and results. It's always interesting to see what's working/not working for people.

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    1. I find that interesting, too. I like to collect the data. :)

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  6. It's nice to see there are great results like yours from blog tours, though it sounds like an awful lot of work to coordinate it and set it up. I'm long overdue to try having one myself.

    Congratulations on your new release!

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    1. Not if you are using a blog tour service. You don't have to worry about coordinating or setting it up.

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  7. I could tell that you'd put in a lot of effort. I appreciated how easy you made it for bloggers like me to post about your launch. Glad all of your work paid off.

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    1. You're welcome! I do my best to make it super easy for everyone giving me a hand. :)

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  8. Great info! Since I have a release coming at the end of April, I'm looking hard at this, and thinking about how to use some of your advice. Love the suggestion about guest posts as answers to specific questions--that would really help. I have toured successfully (and also less so, I admit) with Great Escapes, which does tours for Cozy Mysteries for free, and other genres for a reasonable fee, and it's clear that what people want is content--interviews, guest posts, etc. It's getting harder to get reviews.

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    1. It is getting harder to get reviews. For all of us. No matter what we do during or releases. *sigh*

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  9. I hope sales are going through the roof, Chrys. You deserve great success. Happy IWSG day.

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  10. Sounds like your release was a success. Congratulations!

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  11. Thanks so much for all this information! I'm so glad your tour was a success. I'll remember to come back here when I get ready to do more marketing.

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  12. Thanks for sharing your experience. When writers are willing to be transparent about what they tried and how it worked, it helps us all! @samanthabwriter from
    Balancing Act

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    1. I like to share my experiences with marketing. It will be different for everyone, but I figure it provides things to consider.

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  13. Very valuable info. Glad to hear that some of it worked out, and some of it was good for experience.

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    1. It's always good to examine how things go when it comes to marketing and to take what doesn't work to learn from them.

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  14. Really fantastic info on blog tours - thanks so much for sharing!

    I'm not sure if I've ever read a fiction book in second person. I'm very intrigued by the idea. Something to add to my TBR list.

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    1. You're welcome, Ellen!

      Glad you found a book to add to your TBR list!

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  15. Very helpful and illuminating post. Thank you, Chrys.

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  16. Sounds like you did a most excellent job!

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  17. Thanks for sharing all of the info! That's interesting that the giveaway run by the book tour didn't do as well as the one you did yourself.

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    1. You're welcome!

      I thought it was interesting, too.

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  18. Thanks for all the fascinating information, Chrys! I have so much to learn, and you are a great source of helpful information. You make sharing your books easy!!! I have one question: Where did you find that giveaway volcano scented candle? I've been thinking that maybe I should let an egg go bad and prick it to get a whiff to delight a geologist. You are a generous and delightful friend to so many IWSG members!

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    1. The candle's scent was called Volcanic Blast, and it smelled so good! I got it at Dollar Tree. :)

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  19. Congrats on another release and successful tour! Your posts are always so informative. <3

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  20. It was fun to read your insights gained from your promotion efforts. I enjoyed asking questions and glad you had good results because you put in so much work.

    https://fromarockyhillside.com

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    1. Thanks, Jeff! I enjoyed answering your interview questions. They really made me think.

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  21. Congrats on your new release Chrys, I would like to thank you for the support you have given me during my time as a blogger. Much appreciated.
    Take care.
    Yvonne.

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    1. Thank you, Yvonne! And that's very sweet of you to say. Thank you for your support as well. :)

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  22. Wow, that sounds amazing! And congratulations. There is a lot here for me to digest. Thank you for sharing your blog tour experience.

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  23. Hi Chrys - fascinating to read and to see the work you put in to your release. Also good to read about Mason's help being so valuable ... all the best and congratulations. It'll be interesting to see how it goes with the adaptions you're making for your mother's release ... good luck and all the very best - Hilary

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    1. Everyone who participated in my blog tour were valuable. Mason won the giveaway randomly. :) I'm interested in seeing how the same service works for my mom as well.

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  24. Good to hear what all you did. Thanks for sharing these information and your marketing strategy.

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  25. I love how open you are with sharing your experiences. It just so happend that I was looking into both these services. Thanks for the info. Looking forward to your March post. Glad to hear your mom has a tour coming up. Hope I can help out in someway. I love her work just as much as yours.

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    1. You're welcome for the info! We would love to have you help with her blog tour. I will email you later. :)

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  26. Thanks for sharing, Chrys. It's always helpful to hear marketing approaches and results. Good job!

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  27. Glad you had some productive blog tours! I'm finally finding my way back into the blogging world, although I feel like I've kept up with your news pretty well through Instagram this last year or so.

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    1. I hope you are enjoying your return to blogging. :)

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  28. These blog tours sound very effective. Thanks for sharing them with us. Happy IWSG and I'm looking forward to Discussion day for the two books for the IWSG book club.

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    1. You're welcome, Kalpana! I am looking forward to having you join us for the book club discussion!

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  29. Thanks so much for this, I really appreciate writers who breakdown all these marketing details, so we can all learn from each other. Susan Kaye Quinn is also really good at offering such advice. You rock!

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  30. Thanks for sharing all of that. It is always good to see what's working for different people. I still have yet to find my own formula. Yet hopefully later this year, I will be releasing a new genre and I have a wee better idea where to market with it. Take care and stay safe! :)

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    1. You're welcome! Wish you all the best with your upcoming release of a new genre!

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  31. What interesting information. Thank you for sharing all the details. It's kind of comforting to know you can pay to have people help you with online book tours in this way. I'd definitely be interested in trying that route in the future.

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  32. Interesting info -- I had wondered about using professional services for blog tours. Love the covers you're featuring at the top of your site!

    Ronel visiting for IWSG day The Great Pretender

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  33. Thanks for the info. Before I organized my own blog tour I researched blog tour services like Sage's Blog Tours. But wasn't sure but wasn't sure if the tour package expense was worth it. Will have to rethink of using a tour service in the future.
    Congrats on your release!

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  34. Thank you so much for mentioning me on your blog, Chrys. I truly appreciate it. And thank you for all this valuable marketing analysis. I'm learning much. Have a beautiful week!

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