What You’ll Learn From Doing A Book Tour

By on September 23, 2017
What You'll Learn From Doing A Book Tour - Writer's Life.org

Doing your first book tour is an incredibly exciting time for any writer, if not a little nerve-wracking too! While it can be a fantastic way to market your writing, gain new readers and sell your book, doing a book tour can also be very demanding!

Here are some of the things you’ll probably learn when doing a book tour, and if you haven’t done one already, learn from them now so you’ll be even better prepared when you do!
You are a salesperson

You might think of yourself as a writer first and foremost, but when you go on a book tour that changes. You are a salesperson, and you need to get your game face on. To be a good salesperson, you need to:

- Believe in your book. Now is not the time to be self-deprecating and coy, tell people why your book is good, and why they should buy a copy.

- Be a good spokesperson. Know how to sell yourself and your work, be personable, friendly and approachable - a big smile goes a long way.

- Know how to close a deal. Being chatty is great, but at some point, you need to try and get a person to buy your book. If you can tell they aren’t going to, try to gently move them along.

Never miss an opportunity to sell. Take your books with you wherever you go, talk to people outside of your book tour locations, keep in mind that this is a business trip and the more books you sell, the more successful you’ll be.

You need to remember to bring certain things with you to every location:

You may end up sitting in the same spot for several hours, so it’s important to be prepared. The excitement of a book tour can make you forget even the most important items so before you leave each day make sure you have:

  • Copies of your book
  • Your business card
  • A pen
  • Some water
  • A list to collect email addresses

What you wear is important

Make an effort when you go on your book tour. You don’t need to wear a business suit, but if you dress smartly and look presentable, it shows that you care, that this is important to you, and people are more likely to take you seriously too.

Planning is necessary

Plan where you are going to stay, what you are going to bring, where you are going to eat, and how you intend to get to and from every location. There is nothing worse than rushing, turning up late, or finishing a session exhausted but still having to find a place to crash for the night, so be as organised as you possibly can be.

You’ll need to keep hydrated and eat right

Staying healthy on a book tour is so important. It’s easy to forget to eat, to not drink enough or get enough sleep but if you don’t at least make an effort to eat right and get some shut-eye, you’ll end up feeling (and looking) completely wiped out by the end of the tour.

You need to market your tour like nothing on earth

Do anything and everything you can to market your book tour. Research the locations you are going to and come up with ingenious ways to market your book. There may be some days where you get a disappointing turnout, but if you know you have done your best to get the word out, that’s all you can do.

Downtime is necessary

If you are travelling to new locations, it’s a good idea to plan your time so you can explore new places. You’ll probably have some time to kill in-between going to different places so use it wisely and have fun!

Saying thank you goes a long way

Remember to thank everyone who was involved in making your book tour a success. Not only the people who bought your book but the managers of the bookstores and other locations you went to and anyone else you can think of too. Keeping people onside will mean they will be more willing to have you back another time and organising your next book tour will be so much easier.

Planning a book tour is an exhilarating time. However, it’s important to be as prepared as possible. What lessons have you learnt from going on a book tour? Share them with us here!

Bethany Cadman -author of 'Doctor Vanilla's Sunflowers'

Bethany Cadman -author of 'Doctor Vanilla's Sunflowers'

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