Thursday, August 9, 2018

Why We Buy Books - Even When The Internet Gives Information Away

Why do people still buy books that largely contain information one can access online for free?

The same reason people are willing to:

·         Pay $35 to park their car at a sporting event.
·         Shell out $5 for coffee they can make at home for a buck.
·         Spend $18 to see a movie in a theater.
·         Get a cab when a bus would do.
·         Send their laundry out rather than do it at home.


Think about it.  How much time does one want to spend researching everything online, burdened to figure out which site is the most current and reliable source to follow?  A book neatly packages orders, and edits the information you want, provided presumably by a qualified expert or a trained writer and researcher who filters the content being provided.

I say do both – read a book and consult the Internet.

If authors get smart about packaging great content and stylistically presenting it with helpful charts and graphics, and cool images, their books will prove to be useful and appealing.

Some books have trouble keeping up with information that changes quickly.  But that’s all the more reason to get a book that can help you put all of these changes into the proper perspective.

For a book to succeed (non-fiction) it obviously has to be:

·         Well-written.
·         Well-researched.
·         Presented in an easy-to-use, logical way.
·         Filled with resources, advice, and relevant ideas.
·         Offering interesting information w/cogent analysis.
·         Sharing of stories that are unique and timely – if not timeless.

What separates a book vs. one scouring the Internet for trusted, comprehensive, accurate, updated, and relevant material is that a book represents months, if not years, of researching, writing, and editing, whereas many blog posts or short online articles are lacking depth.  Because a consumer has to track down and vet dozens of sites – and even then the information could be incomplete or contradictory because it’s not filtered through a singular source – one has to side with a book.  But then money becomes a factor for some.

Why pay for something you can get for free, right?

Because you are not comparing two similar values, you can’t simply accept the free version as good enough, can you?

Books differ from the Internet in that online resources tend to give straightforward facts or stats, things the consumer may specifically be looking for.  Nothing wrong there.  But without seeing other information that you don’t know to look for, you miss out, whereas a book presents a more holistic perspective on the topic it covers.

I admit I don’t buy a book for every topic that I need information on but I also don’t solely rely on the Internet to inform me of things that I really want – and need – to know more about.  Really, they can work hand-in-hand, each supplementing one another in a way to best inform us.

But when push comes to shove, one should always choose the book over the random searches yielded online.


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Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2018. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent.  This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by as a "best resource.” He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo America and participated in a PR panel at the Sarah Lawrence College Writers Institute Conference.

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