Do you Prefer “Click” or “Brick” Learning?

by | Aug 23, 2017

By Judith Briles

Savvy and successful authors know that the publishing and marketing worlds keep changing. And they know that they have to “invest” into CEs—continuing education. Sometimes it can be done under their roofs; other times, in person.

I have 8 questions for you:

  1. Would you like more book sales?
  2. Would you like to know some awesome short cuts to get your next book out that are free?
  3. Would you like to cement yourself as a key influencer in your genre / your expertise?
  4. Would you like to start making more money with your words?
  5. Would you like to get a sponsor for your book?
  6. Are you feeling a tad confused or overwhelmed with the tsunami of online options offering to create, sell and market your books?
  7. Would you like to be rejuvenated with ideas that resonate with what you and what your personal vision is?
  8. And, if you are like me, would you like to not waste your time, energy and money?

I can answer YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES to all of the above. As much as I know about book marketing … there’s always something else … something new and improved.

The reality is: when you enter this thing called publishing, it’s a never-ending story. There is always new ideas and strategies for book marketing; for how to be this and how to be that. Most likely, you are bombarded with pitches online for “stuff” to get to enhance yours. And you buy it, never looking at it.

Online has become the infomercial world of marketing—marketing anything—and authors and writers are a key target. I know … count me in the mix. I’ve sat in on more webinars; read more articles; and I have clicked away. And I confess, I’ve bought “stuff” that I’m clueless where it went; what computer file it’s hiding in; or if it’s really relevant today. How about you?

In person events have a different twist. A plus is I’m away from the office a few days; which is sometimes a negative. I like the personal interaction and face-to-face time. And sometimes, the intensity can be an overwhelm—so much information at once.

Click or Brick … Which is for You?

I love the ability and ease to “click” quickly and move on. But what about a “brick” approach? Brick meaning “in person.” Brick certainly takes more time, energy, and sometimes money. For me, if my schedule has the opening, or I can clear it, I will choose the brick method. Why?
Participating in person has perks.

  1. First, you connect with others—and open a huge possibility of learning from their experiences—those others are like you.
  2. Second, you have the opportunity to engage one-on-one with top influencers, experts and speakers—getting direct answers with your questions that related to you and your book. You can build relationships.
  3. Third, you are away from your office and others. Concentrating on just you and your book with everyday distractors out of the way.
  4. Fourth, you come away with new ideas, concepts and strategies that are often the tipping point toward a new vision; strategies for moving your book into a direction you hadn’t thought about; and reenergized.
  5. Fifth, “brick” events are exhilarating and fun. And, sometimes exhausting.

But, then there’s the “click” method.

  • You don’t have to leave home. For many, that’s a huge plus. Or, if you are travelling, you can just login via your computer, tablet or mobile. I’ve done this plenty of times for teleseminars, webinars and online summits.
  • Another plus is that it’s come as you are. No makeup or dressing up. PJs if you like.
  • If you miss it, there’s often a replay of the presentation. Listening at a later, more convenient, time is a perk. Often a webinar is at an inconvenient time for me—my MO is to register, knowing I will get the replay the next day and have a few days to listen in.
  • Day-long online events usually are not a solo venture—they include many presenters. You have the opportunity to login and out and listen to just what you want.
  • Some have a download or two to support a presentation that the speaker has created. Most presenters will refer viewers/listeners to their website for other freebies.
  • There is no networking and you don’t know who else is attending.

Often, the “Click” events will have the words “online” and “summit” in them. Many times they are free for the actual day they run and then charge a fee past the event—costs will vary for an individual presenter to a package deal for all.

For “Brick” events, they may require travel if you are out of your city. Most times, there’s an overall conference fee—some include meals; others don’t.

Whatever you are looking for, Google will be your portal. Explore the website of the group.

  • Is it a newbie event or has it been ongoing?
  • Is it a solo presenter or multiple?
  • Do you recognize any of them?
  • Do you follow any of them in social media?
  • Do you know anyone else who is participating or has attended in the past?

Either way … “Click” or “Brick” or a combo, it’s an investment. Certainly your time. Sometimes your money. But necessary. Staying ahead in publishing means you make a commitment to continual learning.


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  1. Judith

    Thanks Ernie. I believe a social media presence is essential. I’m not a fan of book stores knowing that the average sales are 4-6 books over two hours–who needs that?

    I use both fir learning. But I lean toward bricking it–building relationships and the support that comes from them can be the tipping point. Judith

  2. Ernie Zelinski

    You ask, “Do you Prefer “Click” or “Brick” Learning?”

    I prefer both and at the same time have to be very selective given that a lot of so-called techniques advocated by the so-called “book experts” in either realm are big-time time wasters.

    For example, just yesterday at a Chapters/Indigo bookstore in my hometown, I was surprised to see an author of two books doing a book signing (on a Tuesday at 4 PM). I actually felt sorry for him. I wouldn’t be surprised it he didn’t sell one book. For the record, I haven’t done bookstore book signings since the 1990’s. I can come with at least 25 “brick” book marketing techniques that will be much more effective.

    But then again, I have come up with at least 25 “click” book marketing techniques that are much more effective than social media. That’s why I object when I hear, “Social media is essential for every author.” Fact is, social media can be totally ignored and a first time author can still become much more successful than 99 percent of authors using social media. I believe that marketing consultant Rob Eagar agrees with me in his blog, “Don’t Get Suckered By Social Media”:

    Incidentally, David Chilton also agrees with me. David recently called me to say, “Ernie, you are one of the few self-publishers who knows what he is doing.” For the record, David Chilton’s self-published “The Wealthy Barber” sold over 2 million copies. What’s more, David helped the Podleski sisters publish and market their LoonySpoons cookbook, which ended up selling over 850,000 copies and earning over $6.5 million in profits.

    In short, I do NOT like to waste my “time, energy and money” on brick or click. That’s why I am super selective in whatever book marketing techniques I choose to employ. These words of wisdom by one of the most successful self-publishers ever have guided me through the years.

    “It’s better to do a sub-par job on the right project than an excellent job on the wrong project.”
    — Robert J. Ringer



  1. Top Picks Thursday! For Writers & Readers 08-31-2017 | The Author Chronicles - […] Judith Briles discusses the pros and cons of learning online vs. in-person. […]

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