Birth of the “Virtual Book Tour”

November 20th, 2002 was an important day for me.

On that evening, I drove into the Book Passage (bookstore) parking lot in Corte Madera, CA and I met Al and Tipper Gore during their live “physical” book signing. I was shocked when I discovered that they only sold a few hundred books. I knew there had to be a better way.

The better way to sell books or info products is a Virtual Book Tour … which has been the topic of this video blog and my 4-module series.

Since 2002, I’ve conducted nearly a hundred Virtual Book Tours (“VBTs”). And today, I charge almost $5K to interview authors (for 60 minutes) and mail my online list on their behalf.

Click here now to access to VBT registration page.

24 Responses to “Birth of the “Virtual Book Tour””

  1. paul sterling Says:

    Great video… the only question is – why didn’t someone think of this sooner. It is such a powerful and logical and simple idea.

    Paul Sterling

  2. Jane Waters Says:

    this is the first I’ve heard about Virtual Book Tour. It is a truly inspired idea. I love it :) When I get settled more, and get MY book back on track, you might just have a customer…. marketing a book is the one thing that terrifies me about the book-writing process. But, I give great phone…..

    thanks for this vid, Alex. I need to watch it again and take a few notes!

  3. Caryl Says:

    Hi Alex, fantastic idea – you are lively, enthusiastic, and you get results.

    Two questions: 1)can I do it from the UK? 2) You say you charge authors $5k. If we sign up for the programme do you include your interview of the author and assist them with their launch to your list?


  4. Jai Dev Singh Says:

    Thank you, that was excellent. I’ve gotten lots of valuable insights from watching these. Is the virtual book tour about how to learn to create and market your own virtual book tour?

  5. Erik Valdman Says:

    Hi Alex,
    I am a proud alumni of VBT…
    I know now, two years later, that your course, is simply a must for anyone who has something of a value to share with others, you have walked the walk, and I have a growing respect and admiration not only for the knowledge that you openly share, but also to the way you share it.
    When I have first taken your course two years ago I was new to the Internet, and all I wanted is to learn how to get my message out, but what I have learned, and am continuing to learn from you, is 1000 times more then I have ever expected…in my opinion, this video has a great way to present the story behind VBT, but if the the future authors could only see what I know now…they would not wait even a second and join your course instantly, as they could miss out on a life time of benefit, thank you
    Erik Valdman

  6. Ladybeams Says:

    I thought this was great, even tho I don’t work in that media yet. It seems much more practicle than the old fashioned way. Thanks for the tips.

  7. Elisabeth Kuhn Says:

    Hi Alex,

    if I hadn’t already been convinced and signed up for your Virtual Book Tour, this video would have done the trick!

    What a great idea to take us into the very bookstore. And that shot with all the seats in front of the lectern. Been there!

    The “green” thing is a great extra point. Hadn’t thought of that. And thanks for the link at the end. I plan to make plenty of use of it!

    Looking forward to kick-off and my own VBT 😉


  8. Diane Eble Says:

    You hit the nail on the head with what you say about bookstore signings. In fact, “real” book tours can be exhausting. A friend of mine collapsed toward the end of a two-month book promotion for her two novels. I didn’t have the heart to ask how many books she actually sold on her tour.

    Contrast this with the experience of the coauthors of Pagan Christianity: Exploring the Roots of Our Church Practices, for whom I conducted a Virtual Book Tour. They received 668 questions and signups before the VBT on March 18, and we conducted the book tour from the comfort of our own homes, in 60 minutes.

    Hundreds of people attended the phone interview, and people bought the book from all over the world.

    Not only that–but in the 2 months since, 59 more people have asked questions. One of the huge advantages of a VBT over a bookstore signing is that you get to begin a relationship with your readers that lasts, because when they sign up for the VBT they give their email addresses.

    People can continue to ask questions of the author, and then they listen to the replay of the Virtual Book Tour.

    I know you’ll explain all the ins and outs of how VBTs work on the Preview Call. As someone who’s beein in publishing for 3 decades, I applaud you for what you’re doing to usher in a “new era of publishing.” I believe VBTs are the future of book promotion, especially as gas prices soar and bookstores close.

  9. Narek Gabrielyan Says:

    Great tip Alex!

    Every course you put together is created
    with exceptional passion and guaranteed
    to over deliver… that’s awesome.

    btw, in one of your Wednesday minutes,
    you mentioned taking Kolbe A test, and
    said that according to the results – you
    are an innovator…

    I would say that you are a true innovator
    without the test results :)

    Yesterday, I followed your example and
    took the test myself…

    Better and better,

    Narek Gabrielyan

  10. Dean Goranson Says:

    Great Idea

    Found it difficult to follow with the playback in such a stuttering


  11. Melanie Jordan Says:

    Hi Alex,

    Cool video although I was a little worried about you driving and talking to the camera in the beginning. I’m already enrolled in Virtual Book Tour Secrets and I want to make sure you are with us for the class :) !

    I’ve always believed in the virtual author and infopreneur model, and I am looking forward to learning how to put all the marketing together for virtual book tours from you, since you gave me a wealth of great ideas from the Podcast Secrets class I just took with you and Alex.

    Looking forward to Virtual Book Tour Secrets!

    Melanie R. Jordan
    Author of “Have Your Cheeseburger And Keep Your Health Too!”

  12. Dolan Says:

    Great Video. Love the transition into the book store and the visuals. I really felt the impact of someone important showing up to their book signing and only having a handful of people. WOW that would suck!

  13. David Povilaitis Says:

    Hey Alex,

    these videos are great! this is my first visit and I enjoyed the format….stayed much longer than I intended….but got a lot more than I expected. Have been a long time fan. Now I have a client that this will work nicely for and I will pass this on to!

  14. Cathy Perkins Says:

    Great video! Can’t wait for VBTS to start again – what a learning opportunity. You always give more than it seems anyone should have to give.

    Learning from you is truly a blessing.


  15. Henry Says:

    I’m glad I clicked on Alex’s link just for the other successful people & their virtual book tours.

  16. Tom Chuong Says:

    Great tip Alex! Please keep your eyes on the road because I want to see more of your great tips. Take care! :-)

  17. Karen Ryce Says:

    I’m convinced! I’m convinced! Do you have scholarships? Could I get one?

  18. lincoln ong Says:

    hi alex…everything you do is great..

  19. Jeanne May Says:

    Hi Alex

    Enjoyed the video very much! And enjoyed the concept!

    I did a traditional book signing with my first book… it was great fun and extremely rewarding but had its drawbacks as you talked about in the video! It was a print book and at that time I knew no better other than physical book signing.

    I’m in the process of finishing my third book… and I’ve learnt so much since my first! Having a virtual book tour will definitely be the way I’ll go.

    Thanks for your wisdom!

  20. Gedalyah Onomastician Says:

    Ahoy! Alex!

    In the last 24h I read everything I could find on the www that you wrote and whatever I could find written about you. You’ve convinced me of your contents and you being a human being.

    “Selfish Benevolence” and “Student – Affiliate – Partner” make so much sense.

    Read you, hear you!

  21. Carrie Says:


    Is it possible to do a virtual book tour, 6 weeks before a copy of the book arrives? The book is done?

    What are the rules?

    Brilliant ideas and content, you are amazing:)



  22. Cliff Hume Says:

    Hi Alex:

    Like phones and discs, and TV, the video cannot be understood by a deaf person such as I, and I am on my way to my daily walk. I will get back to you after my walk.

    Thank you for writing. Writing is the only thing I can understand.

    Kindest regards,

    Cliff Hume.

  23. Becky Says:

    Hi Alex!

    Thank You! VBT makes sense now : ) I am so not a techie and now I feel real smart 😀

    I think this is an awesome video for any first timer to check out VBT – sure was for me!

    It carried me right to listening to VBT you did with Yvonne Oswald which is icing on the cake because now I can “switch” myself away, keep my chin UP, & mark my calander with “fabulous day”! Thank you!

  24. Dr Claude Says:

    My friend Betty loved the virtual book tour I organized for her with the help of some of the templates that you share, Alex. See what we did together for her book entitled The Inner Game of Russian Roulette (replay is available for free for those interested–just register). Anyone can set something up like that and reach a lot more people from all over the world, all from the comfort of home.
    Dr Claude Windenberger

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