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Any thoughts on Form vs. Format with HubPages?

  1. tsmog profile image85
    tsmogposted 16 months ago

    Format is a given for understanding as shared through the Learning Center and the description for a 'Stellar Hub'. Form can range from personalized style with a first person voice to completely objective in a style of scholastic being a third person voice. Could writing in the second person voice be seen as pushy or standoffish? Those may vary especially through learned experiences over time while seeing results with views and HubScores.

    Any thoughts on those - Format and Form? Is there a happy medium with mix?

    Could a more third person voice have a greater propensity of success with a Hub contrast a first person or second person voice at a blog of website? Would that offer value of having a blog or website seeking a fan base and following offering backlinking to Hubs. Hence there would be a trail or pathway similar to:

    HP + third person → Blog/Website with greater latitude of voice and vice versa

    Thank you for your time reading and considering.

  2. EricDockett profile image94
    EricDockettposted 16 months ago

    It seems to me that writing successful online content is increasingly about making a connection with your reader. For that reason, I think my better Hubs are those written in a conversational tone. When I first started writing here I did my best to sound professional, writing in I guess what you are calling a 3rd-person voice. Looking back, I think it came off as preachy and sterile.

    Most of us are telling people how to do something, conveying information, sharing experiences or otherwise giving advice. I think the fewer walls you can create between you and the reader the better.

    However, some Hubbers do write technical and somewhat more academic articles. In those cases, it probably is better to avoid using the words "I" and "you" as it will affect a more professional tone.

    As with everything else in writing, your intended audience is what's important. As for "format", the same applies no matter what your "form": Build pages that are valuable to humans and easy to understand for computers.

    I do think maybe you are making things a little too complicated by trying to draw a distinction between HP and a blog or website. Most people who run websites have the same issues with connecting with their audience as we do here.

    1. tsmog profile image85
      tsmogposted 16 months ago in reply to this

      Thank you Eric! :-) Your reply offers great value to me. My goal is less creative writing and more practical Hubs. I am use to using the 2nd & 3rd person and am seeking a comprise with the 1st. I have no experience with a blog or website such as Weebly. Yet, many say those add value to the online writing experience with connections to HubPages.

      I agree and have learned maybe through hard knocks writing for the audience is what is important. I like "Build pages that are valuable to humans and easy to understand for computers". That offers great food for thought.

      Again, thank you!

  3. melissae1963 profile image89
    melissae1963posted 16 months ago

    I have written articles from all points of view and viewpoints. Readers accepted each for its merits. There is no single method, form, or format that works with every article. So much of what we write depends on the audience and the purpose for writing.

  4. ChristinS profile image94
    ChristinSposted 16 months ago

    My personal experience has been that you have to have the right blend of authority and personal touch for online writing.  The rules that govern writing for magazines and other publications simply do not apply to web content, articles, blogs etc.

    You don't want too much use of "I", because it isn't about you, but at the same time, personal stories here and there make you a human and not just another generic article.  Your writing should be an emotional connection with the reader and that is easiest to accomplish through relating some personal experiences that show you know what you are talking about.  So long as the personal accounts are on topic. 

    Nothing is more annoying to me for example than going to a recipe blog to learn how to make something and having to sift through stories of the bloggers little cherub kids and their pet dog charlie.  Unless those kids and charlie are directly involved in the making of the cupcakes, I don't give a hoot.  What is useful though is a blogger who takes time to explain her experience and things she's tried that worked or didn't while making that recipe.

    In my instructional hubs on soap making - I include the directions in detail, but I also interject here and there with personal experiences or things I encountered in the process, when possible I include pictures.   This blend of both professionalism and a bit of conversational personal touch drives sales and shares.  I refrain from talking about my pet cats or my beautiful children, because as much as I love them, no one who wants to know how to make soap cares about my personal life beyond my soap making experience.

    If I didn't use any personal stories though and just listed the steps to making soap, many would question if I had actual experience with what I was talking about.  My personal experience gives credibility and it is also a better way to drive sales.  People who can see I know what I'm doing are more inclined to purchase things I recommend.

    I've written for both print publications and different online venues - and it's vastly different than the traditional "rules of writing" we learned in college.  Online, we are here to make money and get readers - you do that by giving the people what they want.  What they want is for you to answer a question, solve a problem, teach them something or entertain them.  If you can do all of these things in one piece - congratulations, you are a master of the craft.

    1. Venkatachari M profile image83
      Venkatachari Mposted 16 months ago in reply to this

      Great reply, Christene. Your hints and tips are good giving a clear understanding of the issue. I agree with all that you said here and hope to gain from this great advice.