The Seven Things I've Learned in My Five Years on HP
I recently read an excellent hub by a hubber who had just finished her first year here on HubPages. She listed seven things she'd learned so far. Those seven things were instructional for even old soul hubbers like me. I've been here five years, though there are many who have been here twice that number and more. I'd love to see their lists of things learned.
It got me to thinking about what I've learned over these years. Much of it I wish I'd picked up in my first year. But some of us are slow learners. Here are my seven gems of wisdom. I'd love to read others.
1. HubPages is run by a group of people who came up with an idea for an online business and are running it to make a profit. The first rule of marketing is find out who your most profitable customers are, and go out and find others just like them. By the end of your second year here if you are not making regular payouts, you probably never will unless you completely change what you write about and your style of writing. HP is looking for writers who make them money and will keep tweaking the process in order to do that.
2. Many successful hubbers, I'm convinced, simply paraphrase Wikipedia and call it a hub - usually a how-to hub. Nobody knows that much detail on that many subjects right off the top of their heads, but you never see a source listed for the majority of hubs. I say, live and let live, but take with a grain of salt any advice from hubbers who fit this description.
3. Deleting comments that you don't agree with or you think are off-subject diminishes your hub. Let the discussion go where it will. If you only want to hear from people who agree with you, stick to the forums. But if you go to the trouble to write a hub and post it, understand that you have just published your thoughts in public and asked for people to tell you what they think: good or bad.
4. Don't call people names. Besides being rude and unprofessional, it weakens your argument. If you can't express your heartfelt opinion while at the same time showing respect for the person on the other side of the argument, it's just as well you keep your opinion to yourself. Expressing it obnoxiously only diminishes your position.
5. Write. Just write. Don't write to improve your hubscore. Don't write to increase your page views. Don't write for the Google gods. Write what you are interested in. Write what you care about. Write what you know or are willing to find out. That's the hook HubPages used to attract us in the first place. Featured, editor's choice, apprenticeship, hub of the day, awards and accolades be damned. Just write. That's what you signed up to do.
6. This is not the place for most people who need to write to pay the bills.
7. Participate. You get out of this experience - like most in life - what you put into it. My goal in my fifth year is to read more hubs, more hubs by new writers, more hubs by writers I follow. Questions and forums are window dressing. Hubs are what this place is all about. My goal for the next four years is to read as much as I write.
Please check out the first year hubber who inspired this hub: