Are you aware that documents you’re sending out by post or by email attachment may contain errors that might damage your hard-earned reputation?
The reason I ask is because I recently received an email from the Sales Director of a local company in which was attached a sales brochure. On reading this brochure I spotted 12 mistakes.
When I replied to notify him of this, he was devastated as he had no idea that he was sending out literature that contained mistakes. He said he would be going back to his marketing people to point this out and that a new brochure would come to me first for professional proofreading.
I’m sure I’m not the only one that will spot these mistakes. Whilst the product being promoted wasn’t appropriate for me, those for whom it would be appropriate are probably now making a negative judgement about the business and saying, “If they can’t be bothered to check their literature, then why should I be bothered to place an order?” The poor quality of the brochure gives the wrong impression to prospective customers.
You probably do everything necessary to ensure that your products and services are delivered to the best of your ability. You protect your staff, yet how much care do you take over all the various bits of written material that your business produces?
I’m talking about stuff like website content, blog content, publicity/marketing material, emails, newsletters, reports…..the list goes on.
Many of us may take all this for granted as it is just something we do without thinking about it. But let’s think about it for a minute……..
Any piece of written material that you ‘publish’ by sending it to a customer or out into the public domain via a website or a blog, for example, is either promoting your business or it will reflect back on the quality of your business, without you even knowing it.
Did you know, in a recent survey, 59% of respondents said they would not do business with a company whose marketing material contained errors?
So, what do you do to make sure that your written content is accurate and error free? Do you rely totally on your auto-correct functions and a spellchecker? That’s fine, but did you realise that if a word is spelt correctly but you might have keyed it incorrectly, a spellchecker won’t pick it up? That could be embarrassing if you type ‘naked’ instead of ‘named’.
Reading and re-reading your own work is not only time consuming – time that you could be using to better effect – but you’re more likely to miss those small errors because your eyes and brain recognise what you’ve written and will skim over it even though it could be wrong.
The brain is an incredible thing. If you’re reading something and you spot a mistake then your brain will automatically flip into a different mode and focus on finding the next mistake instead of the message contained within the writing. So, if you’ve got an important message to get across to your potential clients, you must make sure that it’s error-free otherwise you’ll lose the reader’s attention.
These are classic examples of how a trained proofreader can help businesses to preserve and enhance reputations through the publication of professional-looking and error-free copy.
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