Learn why it's essential to use the second person pronoun "you" in the quick-start guide, and how to handle writing the guide if there's more than one "you."
- There's an old saying in the technical writing community…that goes something like this…users never refer to themselves as users.…Like lots of old sayings, this one is very wise.…Developers may refer to the people…who will use their products as users,…and the marketing team may call them customers.…You may have been referring to future readers…of your Quick-Start Guide as users, too,…but that's not how they refer to themselves.…
So when you write your Quick-Start Guide,…you'll need to refer to the people who are using it…in terms they will recognize and respond to.…You want the readers to see themselves…in the guide and to recognize it's there to help them.…Here are two reliable ways to refer to your users…in your guide.…Use second person pronouns you, your or yours.…For example, instead of writing…"The user should click Protected Account to view…"all the status information on each registrant."…You should use the pronoun you, write this instead.…
"You should click Protected Account to view…"all the status information on each registrant."…
- Explain the difference between a conceptual guide and a procedural guide.
- Determine how to address a user when writing a quickstart guide.
- Recall a tactic that helps avoid too many notes.
- Identify the benefits of using plain language.
- Name the most important aspect of formatting.