A personal finance book and a personal finance blog can both be invaluable resources on your journey to financial stability.
Whether you’re trying to regain control over your debt or you are interested in growing your wealth, there are books and blogs out there ready to help you achieve your financial goals.
But how do you know whether a book or blog is the right choice for you?
Keep reading! I will talk about the five basic differences between reading a personal finance book and a personal finance blog…
1. Depth and Thoroughness
Books can often go more in depth on a topic than a blog. This is mostly just a result of the different formats. Nobody is going to read a 100,000 word blog post. A blog post needs to be a length you can reasonably read in a single sitting. That’s because it’s not really easy or practical to stop midway through a post, save your spot and come back to it later.
Books just have more space to work with as well as more time. Authors can spend a year or more working on a single book. Meanwhile, a blogger posting one blog a year would not get very far.
So if you are looking for an in-depth, thoroughly researched understanding of a topic, you need to find a full-length book about it. On the other hand, if you just need a quick but well-informed explanation or discussion of the topic, a blog might be your better choice. Blogs offer a more condensed overview of lots of different ideas where a book will dig deeper into just one or two ideas.
Blogs tend to be more accessible since you can read them on any device, anywhere you are. You can pull up a blog on your phone while you’re standing in line at the grocery store. This kind of accessibility means that you can easily steal a few minutes here and there to catch up on the blogs you follow.
With that said, if your book has an audio version, it can be a little more commuter friendly. You could use your drive to and from work to listen to a few chapters of the book. This is a great option if you have limited time to dedicate to reading a full book.
Blogs give you the most up to date information compared to books. A blogger can stay always on the pulse of the latest trends and ideas. Then they can post about those trends and ideas immediately. A book, on the other hand, starts to age the moment it is published. It can’t be updated as easily.
That doesn’t mean books are immediately irrelevant, though. They are usually far better than blogs when it comes to looking at history and deriving lessons from what has happened. They have the space and time to look back and better understand an issue.
While a blog can give you an update on the latest strategy for achieving financial stability, personal finance books help you understand that strategy in depth and learn how to really make it work in your situation.
4. Motivation and Planning
Blogs are better for inspiration and ideas. You can find the coolest new strategies and ideas that people are using and get inspired to try them out yourself. For example, you can learn how other people stay debt-free for their entire lives or learn the secret to talking about personal finances with your partner without it turning into an argument.
Books, however, are better for education and planning. It can walk you through the strategy step by step and even give you tools to actually make a plan that fits your specific situation.
Blogs are a great way to follow someone’s financial journey or get cool ideas for how to save money or get rid of your debt. But sometimes, even the greatest blog doesn’t give you so many tools or as much in depth insight into actually coming up with a strategy for your own situation. So it can be hard to apply blog ideas to your life.
Books can be great tools for actually making something happen with that inspiration. They might include worksheets or exercises or they might just give you specific, actionable tips that can help you really apply ideas to your life. However, they may not always motivate you or inspire you as well as reading a personal journey or seeing an inspiring quote or image can.
5. Author Accessibility
It’s often easier to get in touch with the author of a blog than the author of a book. They usually provide multiple ways of contacting them on their website. That might include sending them a message on one of their social media accounts or even emailing them directly.
This isn’t always true but for the most part, the author of a blog is much more open to talking to their readers. You’ll often find them responding to readers’ comments on their posts or inviting readers to shoot them an email.
This kind of accessibility can be invaluable. You can get specific answers to your questions in a way that even the most detailed and well-written book might not be able to achieve. Being able to write to a personal finance blogger is like having your own personal mentor available whenever you need them.
In the end, you should read both books and blogs. Start by creating a list of your favorite personal finance blogs. Then, when you read a blog post that feels particularly relevant to you or you want to dig deeper into it, find a book on the topic. You can often get in touch with the blog owners themselves to ask for book recommendations. Failing that, just search for books on topics you are interested in and check out the reviews to find the best choice. The more you read whether it’s a book or a blog, the more you’ll learn. So start reading more about the topics that interest you today!