A fellow author emailed me the other day to ask how I had gotten so many book bloggers to read an advance reader copy (ARC) of my debut erotic romance novella, Invisible Ink.
In truth, I don't really think I got a TON of bloggers to read the ARC. Compared to the number of bloggers I ASKED, that is.
However, I do think my strategy could be useful to other authors out there, particularly in the romance genre, so I'll tell you what I've done so far to build interest in Invisible Ink.
MAKE EXCEL YOUR FRIEND
Before I ever pitched even one book blogger about my novella, I began to build a spreadsheet of all of the romance genre bloggers I could find. I found them through Google, of course, but also by searching on Twitter and Facebook for key words like "book blogger." Twitter and FB both do a decent job of suggesting OTHER accounts of book bloggers to follow once you have found a few it knows you're interested in and already following. So every day for several days I combed through these suggested accounts and figured out 1. if they were still active and 2. would they review erotic romance.
If they worked, I added them to the spreadsheet.
Once I found a blog I liked and thought would work for my book, I searched the blog to find out the REAL NAME of the person running the blog and her email address.
I emailed a personalized pitch about the book to each blogger -- and there were HUNDREDS of them on the spreadsheet by the time I was done. The pitch included the blogger's name and if I could figure out the kind of book she liked, I might mention that, too. I always attached my media kit to these emails. For those bloggers who preferred FB, I sent a FB message (although I didn't find this to be as effective.)
TRACK EVERY CONTACT YOU MAKE
As I emailed the bloggers, I began to color-code the spreadsheet.
Those I contacted were marked in YELLOW.
Those that agreed to review or promote the book, GREEN.
Those who refused, RED. Red was also used for blogs that seemed to be no longer operating.
Other colors were used along the way for other reasons, but the point of these colors was to help me stay organized. In this way, by updating the sheet each day and sorting it by color, I could easily track my successes and who I needed to follow up with.
Using these tips, I was able to get about 10 percent of the bloggers I contacted to commit to promoting or reviewing my book. I consider this a major victory, even if all of them didn't LOVE it.
I hope these tips helped you to organize your pitch approach!