Online networking is part of your book promotion campaign, and the blogosphere is the hub of your online book publicity efforts.
Having said that, I’ve only recently begun to learn just how powerful a networking tool a blog can be. I always knew a blog was a powerful networking tool, and I saw very quickly that blogs can be an important part of a book promotion campaign. But it’s been hard to sell authors on blogging if they aren’t blogging already because I didn’t understand the mechanics of why blogging was such a powerful way of networking.
I could tell authors that, if they blogged, potential readers would find their blogs and read their messages. I could tell authors that blogs would drive traffic to their Web sites. But I couldn’t tell them how it happened.
And, while I’m still a book publicist and not a blogging expert, I am learning more about how blogs fit into book promotion campaigns every day. I’ve been lately reading about how trackbacks and pinging work. You can check out the explanations here and here.
In a nutshell, trackbacks and pinging (but especially trackbacks) allow you to have an actual exchange of communication with other bloggers. With trackbacks, you can add your comments to others’ blogs on your blog, and your comments will show up on the other bloggers’ blogs as comments. So your comment is seen on two blogs: yours and theirs. That provides you with twice the visibility as you’d receive if you’d only made your comment on your own blog. Pinging doesn’t double your visibility, because when you ping, your comment is posted only on your own blog. Still, when you ping about someone else’s blog, that other blogger is made aware that you’ve referenced his or her blog in your blog — so you’ve still initiated a communication with another person.
In other words, you can use trackbacks or pinging to communicate with other bloggers. That means trackbacks and pinging increase your capacity to network, and networking is the name of the game when it comes to online book promotion.
I hope you’ll give it a try and see how it works. Blog about it. You can then use trackbacks and pinging on your own blog to let me know …. and I can root for your book’s success with you!