ToughNickel is advice about money: making it, saving it, investing it, and working for it. Would you like to write for us? You can, especially if you have some unusual expertise, you can support your advice with a detailed account of your experience, or you can support your advice with research.
Articles on ToughNickel have to meet the quality standards for our Network Sites, which you can read about on the HubPages editorial policy page.
In addition, many ToughNickel topics offer advice about financial or legal questions that could seriously affect a reader’s well-being, and require authors to demonstrate credibility: topics like investing, avoiding foreclosure, obtaining government benefits, or deciding whether to bet your future on some moneymaking opportunity. Google calls these YMYL (Your Money or Your Life) topics.
How Do I Demonstrate Credibility?
When evaluating your article, we are looking for you to demonstrate credibility in one or more of these three ways:
- Professional experience: For example, are you a realtor, attorney, consultant, recruiter, HR person, career coach, financial professional? By all means, say so. See “How Do I Build Reader Trust” below.
- Personal experience: Do you have personal experience with a career, a scam, a self-employment opportunity, an intransigent bureaucracy, a money-saving trick? If your story explores how you dealt with a particular problem or opportunity other people might also have, then it will be helpful to others.Here are some ToughNickel articles where the author may not be a certified business guru but has the necessary experience to write about their subject.
- 26 Ways to Make Money From Your Small Farm
- Working at an Amazon Warehouse- What's it Like Working for Amazon?
- And when you are writing from personal experience, nothing builds credibility like real details and original photos. Take a picture of your recycled yogurt cups, the things you sold on eBay, or your worm farm.
- Citing your sources: Even if you do not have direct personal or professional experience with your topic, you may still be able to write for ToughNickel if you have done some homework and show where you found your information. Citing your sources boosts your article's credibility and gives readers a great place to start if they’re interested in learning more. Just create a “Sources” section at the end of the article and list the articles and books you consulted. Use APA style, or list your sources in any other organized way that allows readers to find those resources for themselves.
How Do I Build Reader Trust?
When what you write can impact your reader’s economic well-being, it is important to establish trust right from the start. Three easy features that appear at the very beginning of your article will help you do just that:
- Author bio: Say something about who you are, what you do—and most importantly—whether you have any personal or professional experience with your topic. (Note: The author bio is different from the author profile you might already have created on HubPages.)
- Author photo: For the author photo it’d be great to see a picture of yourself. That way your reader is more likely to trust your content.
- Author’s real name: Using your real name (or a pen name), rather than a clever or random moniker, can also help build reader trust. An author named “monsterhouseflipper” or “bucksbucksbucks” isn’t very credible.
Things to Avoid:
Multiple Stock Photos: Stock photos have been overused in the business world to illustrate abstract ideas. After a while, we run out of ways to illustrate “success,” “decision,” “confidence”; photos of money, stick figures, question marks, forks in the road . . . use them sparingly.
Excessive Promotion of Your Business or Site: On ToughNickel, our main purpose is to inform, not to promote our livelihoods on other sites or places. It’s true that many of us who write about money have many “hats,” ways in which we make a living. Your ToughNickel article with links can’t just be a teaser, making readers go elsewhere for the real stuff, and it can’t just be a duplicate of the material you link to.
Here are some examples of articles on ToughNickel that we would like to showcase. These articles exhibit the type of high-quality work we wish to see on the site:
- Here's Why You Should Say No to an Exit Interview
- My Journey as a Mary Kay Consultant (Twice!)
- How My Family Finds Gold
- Trash Money: The Art of Collecting Aluminum Cans, Plastic, and Glass
- The 10 Best Direct-Sales Company Jobs for Stay-at-Home Moms
- Is the Wish App Legit or a Scam: The Real Reasons Why It's so Cheap
- 11 Ways to Make Money From Fishing
- Is LuLaRoe Going Out of Business? Is It a Scam?
- How to Live Below Your Means and Be Happy
A quick note: All of our Network Sites are a blending of professional editing and writers like you.
If you are intrigued by our community and would like to write for ToughNickel, we’d love to have you! In order to set up an account to begin writing, please sign up on HubPages. Articles are initially written on our parent platform and then, if they are high enough quality, moved to one of our Network Sites like ToughNickel.