6/21/2015 0 Comments
By: Heather Hawkins
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The smallest typographical errors have consequences. I recently had a reader contact me about a typo on this blog, and I should have paid her handsomely for the tip because I was mortified. Perhaps the most embarrassing thing that can happen as a copywriter is to have a typo on your blog! I, like many entrepreneurs, create my own content because I believe in delivering homegrown content and quality. On the other hand, like a lot of you, I'm admittedly often too busy or tired to put the 200% effort into my blog that it deserves. The truth is that even the best of intentions can go awry!
Why are typos a big deal?
You’re exhausted, you’re rushed, and you know that you need to get this content published. You’ve spent time to creatively construct your blog content, product description, press release, or header, and now it’s time to release it to the world. You publish it and then...Houston, we have a problem. There's a blemish - a typo smack dab in the middle of the content you worked so hard on.
Typos speak loudly. Even a single misplaced letter tells people that a business isn’t credible. They question its authenticity and get the impression that the company is sub-par. Readers take away that the writer didn’t put much time into the details of the content, and therefore, they probably don’t invest into details.
The bottom line is that typos are highly unprofessional and damaging to your business.
How can a typo hurt my business?
On one hand, maybe no one will notice your little mistake. On the other hand, you could go out of business.
It seems drastic, but it could happen. In fact, one company in the United Kingdom lost their business due to a simple typographical error in their licensing documentation. Taylor & Sons was launched in 1875 and went out of business earlier this year, just two months after the government released information that Taylor & Sons had gone out of business.
The problem was that another company named Taylor & Son had actually lost their business, but the damage had already occurred by the time anything could be done about the mistake. You can read about it here.
Another tale of the typo occurred in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, where the county put up 26 brand new signs with the word “commissioner” spelled incorrectly. The cost of this error was $4,000. Click here for the full story.
As you can see, typos have a full range of implications. How can you avoid damaging your reputation, losing customers, losing money, or even losing your business with these pesky little grammatical anomalies?
How can I avoid typos?
Typos are terrible, nasty little things that shouldn’t be flaunted. For the love of Hemingway, keep your website, blog, product descriptions, and everything in between typo-free! Don’t forget to keep typos off your business cards, flyers, and every single scrap of branding material you put out there!! How can it be done, you ask? Well, here is a five point blueprint for avoiding typos!
1) Look up the words you don’t know. If you aren’t 100% certain of the spelling of a word, Google it. Use your words correctly, as well. For instance, your customers cringe at the improper usage of “their”, “there”, and “they’re”.
2) Use spell check as a first line of defense. Always use it, but don’t trust it to be as thorough or accurate as the naked eye. For example, spell check isn’t going to differentiate between the proper usage of “its” and “it’s”.
3) Triple check your work. Yes, read it three entire times. Read it from the top to the bottom, from the bottom to the top, and from the top to the bottom again.
4) Leave your work alone for 48 hours. Just leave it and forget about it for 2 whole days. Then, come back and proofread again.
5) Hire a professional copywriter. It takes time to comb through all of your marketing content, and you might not be able to sacrifice the time. If you want to ensure that you receive and publish premium quality content that is 100% typo free, consider hiring a copywriter. A copywriter can either create everything from scratch or revise your existing work.
Typos are the bane of my existence, and the same should be true for you! As a professional, entrepreneur, or marketer, working multiple aspects of your business can be challenging, but content is critical. In fact, content marketing is the new “king” of marketing. Let this guide be your content marketing queen!
About the Author
Heather Hawkins is a top-rated copywriter who specializes in press releases, press release distribution, and web content creation. Her favorite things include enjoying her son and daughter grow up too fast, LSU football, fast cars, freedom, music, and living/laughing/loving in general. Connect with Heather on Google+, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
About Heather Hawkins
Heather Hawkins is a professional copywriter with 4 years of PR, marketing, and entrepreneurial experience.
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