What Makes You Click?

Below is a visual representation of some astounding statistics regarding Internet usage. A little more than twelve years ago I wrote a chapter for a writing book on how to use the Internet for research. I re-read that article recently…umm, Google didn’t even exist back then (founded in September 1998), much less Wikipedia (where the jury is still out if is a reliable source for verifiable facts).

210 billion emails sent per day? I think I get half of those. <!>
20 hours of YouTube videos uploaded every minute?

We swim in a sea of data. So how do you discern what to read or view? In other words, what makes you buy or click?

Take that same mindset and apply it to your next book idea or article. What would make the consumer buy or click it, especially when faced with a plethora of competing options? If your idea, your novel, your insight, can withstand  competitive scrutiny then you have a chance to impact this world. Obscurity equals no audience. That is why publishers are pushing agents and authors to make their “platform” bigger.

Internet Statistics
Via: OnlineSchools.org

Thank you to Tim Challies‘ blog for posting this information.

9 Responses to What Makes You Click?

  1. Ellie Kay March 11, 2010 at 11:08 am #

    Oh, how I love numbers! Numbers generally don’t lie. But they can be manipulated. The Facebook numbers support one of your earlier blogs about the amount of time we can waste if we’re not careful. It would be interesting to see some of these numbers broken out by age. For example, my young adult children are far more likely to watch a TV show streamed online than my hubby is! Thanks for the good info, Mr. Agent man!

  2. Kathryn Lang March 11, 2010 at 12:32 pm #

    These numbers make sense, but it is still hard to get my head around it. How I use my words is more important today than it was a decade ago because there are so many more words that I am competing against.

    Would I buy it? If the answer is not an excited yes then I might want to reconsider what I’m selling!

  3. John March 11, 2010 at 5:29 pm #

    Very interesting post. I still think people will always want substance and relevance. Though we immerse ourselves in a blogosphere of endless information, I think people will still (even if not at every moment) seek meaning for their lives. Growing up, I spent much of my free time listening to rock music. For our nation’s youth, I think today’s social media hours are similar to the music/TV hours of my youth. It is concerning, but not far from what already was. What makes me click? Something productive. Something that might answer a question that’s been nagging at me. Something that helps me better understand the great mystery of life.

  4. Jill Williamson March 11, 2010 at 8:44 pm #

    Hmmmm. Free? Free makes me click, even though I know it’s usually not free. (They want me to subscribe or to review a book.) And I’ll click if I want to learn more about the topic. So then, I suppose I need to ask myself what teens want to learn more about, then blog about it.

  5. Jim Rubart March 12, 2010 at 8:45 am #

    My habits have definitely changed. To click, something has to grab me in the first sentence whereas before I’d give everything the 30 second look. Whether it’s a blog, facebook post, tweet, article, etc., I give people about two seconds to grab me.

    And of course keeping up with your blog, Steve, is a challenge simply because of the massive volume of posts.

  6. Steve March 12, 2010 at 8:52 am #

    Thank you for your gentle urging Jim….
    I’ve never claimed to be a writer, so creating these blog entries takes an enormous amount of time away from what constitutes my day job. This specific blog entry may have looked simple, but it took me over an hour to think it through, compose, rewrite three times (and proofread). If I ever write a book you will know that it took me 10 years to complete!

  7. Jim Rubart March 12, 2010 at 9:30 am #

    Well, you know I mean it as a compliment. Your blog is one of the few I check daily to see if there’s something new.

  8. Steve March 12, 2010 at 9:36 am #

    LOL! Make it easy on yourself. Subscribe to the blog in the upper right hand corner and all new posts will be emailed to you. That way you won’t have to be disappointed by my lack of content every day!

  9. Beth Goddard March 12, 2010 at 4:59 pm #

    That’s great advice. I just did that. :)

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