Promotion is about catching your readers attention. With every release I evaluate what promotions I want to pursue. What worked for one release may not work for the next. As well some new medium may have come along that you need to take advantage of while it is hot. For example, my last release was a novella and I thought it appropriate to have a book trailer where I didn't feel the effort would be worthwhile for my rosettes. (Fellow TWRP author Masha Holl from Otter Creations did a great job) And for my bookmarks this time around I used a postcard with the cover and blurb on one side and a recipe on the other side.
While you may have a big push at the time of a release, there are common things you can work on constantly. I'm a list type of person so I have several excel worksheets that I keep information in. One worksheet is for the Yahoo Groups I can post excerpts and contests. One page lists all my groups in alphabetical order and a second page has them listed by post day. As well, you can subscribe to http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Promotion_Loop_Schedule/ to receive daily updates.
Another worksheet keeps track of all other promotions sites I use: websites, networking sites (facebook, myspace, ning sites, etc.) and blogs. I'm constantly adding new blog entries because you never know when you might need a new site. I don't list every site but stick to general or fantasy/paranormal because that's what I write. You can start by listing review sites or other places you see authors blogging. If you go on a blog tour, I think 7 to 15 sites over a month or two is a good place to start. Once again, you'll need to evaluate which sites would give you the best distribution for your release.
As a short story author, I don't go to a lot of conferences or send mailings to bookstores. However, in the future when I write novels I will need to consider these as well. So I have worksheets for conferences and independent bookstores. I list the conference, website, genre, location, and month it occurs. This way I have all the information I need should I be able to go. Every time an author mentions a signing, I gather information about the store. If you are lucky you can get the proprietor's name and a website or address.
Promotion is something an author should be working on weekly and evaluated often to make sure you are meeting your goals.