I've had the pleasure of being in both blog hops and blog tours - and now I know there's a difference.
A Tour of the Blog Tour
Blog Tours are any time an author goes on a trip to promote a book. In "the old days" (like less than 10 years ago) this was done by physically getting in a plane or by driving (you have a chauffeur, right?) to specific destinations and give interviews, host signings or make other appearances in hopes everyone will see you, become raving fans and go buy your book.
As you can imagine, most authors did not have the means or money to do a really far-reaching book tour. (*frowny face*)
Now, with the advent of the internet (*cue angelic music*), virtual book tours have risen in population.
These cheaper, easier, evergreen tours have exploded the idea that you have to be a rich best-selling author if you want a book tour. (Really, I'm still taking exploded pieces of idea out of my hair.)
Instead of traveling to your destinations, you can put together a multi-stop tour right in your living room. ("Take me home, James. I'm doing a book tour. And by the way, you're fired. I haven't needed you so much it's almost like you never existed.")
How Virtual Blog Tours Work
1. An author or publicist schedules with bloggers for the author to "tour" to their blogs. A publicist is someone who sets up marketing events and promotions. It's kind of like your book's chauffeur to drive up sales so you can concentrate on writing. (Wait, James, you're also a publicist? You're rehired.)
2. The bloggers then host you as a guest on a specific date. It might be an interview, review, or other post designed to bring more attention to you as an author and your book.
3. The author or publicists may elect to comment on the blog post "stop" of the tour, or simply share through social media. ("I was a guest on this Awesome blog because my book is soooo AWESOME." - Too much?)
I'm doing a Blog Hop -er- Tour -er- Something
I've often heard 'blog hop' and 'blog tour' being used interchangeably. The two are similar, but have some key differences.
Annnd now, the moment you've all been waiting for -
("Wow, James, you're an announcer, TOO? but the two terms aren't really fighting, so I'll take it from here.")
"I thought You Weren't Published"
Even though I'm not a published author, I've been a "stop" in blog tours, and joined many blog hops. That's one of the ways I'm actively building my author platform until I have a book to take on "tour".
(But turns out I don't need a chauffer, publicist, OR an announcer. So, James, you're refired. I never want to see your invisible face again. Unless I get super rich, then I'll reconsider!)
I write about, with, for, and around kids all day. (Well, maybe I do the dishes too. Sometimes.)