Return to: GROK Dot Com 7/01/2001

Donít Make Know Mistayque

Grammatical glitches and spelling screw-ups abound in web content, and they push my buttons - the wrong ones. They'll push your customers' wrong buttons too. In your quest to create Killer Copy, you simply MUST pay attention to these details (for more copy advice, see Think ACTIVE!). Look at it from your customers' point of view: if they see you can't be bothered with the most basic grammatical and spelling details, how are they going to trust that you are up to handling all the other details of doing business and not just satisfying but delighting them? If your business is providing content, all the more reason your readers expect you to be letter-perfect.

Think I'm too picky? Then look at what happened to Janet Roberts, who publishes Ezine-Tips. A newsletter subscriber decided to unsubscribe because she found it "difficult to put faith in advice about how to publish an email newsletter from folks who frequently make grammatical and spelling errors in their newsletters." The unsubscriber added, "This leads me to think that if you can't even proof your content that you're writing, how can I be sure that you're checking your sources or promoting valid suggestions/advice." Fortunately, Ms. Roberts (who is certainly not grossly negligent when it comes to writing) took the plucky approach and suggested, "Let our embarrassment be your gain." And then she offered this advice:

To these suggestions I would add:

Thereís more. Keep an eye out for those there/their, your/you're, to/too/two, hear/here, its/it's problems. Remember that a customer doesnít give their address, but rather customers give their addresses, or a customer gives his or her address.

Be painfully vigilant. On the other side of every one of your grammatical or spelling errors is an unnecessarily irritated customer who may very well become an ex-customer, or a potential customer whom your misteaks will push aweigh. To err certainly is human (though never Martian <grin>). But basic, careless and avoidable errors will cost you business.

P.S. Do yourself a big favor and subscribe (I do!) to The Ezine-Tips List.

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Return to: GROK Dot Com 7/01/2001

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