I’ll be the first to admit that I care about misspelled words and punctuation errors way more than most people; in fact, it’s hard for me to read Facebook without cringing. But it’s when I see corporate and professional marketing materials with spelling and grammar gaffes that I really cringe. How embarrassing!
Typos happen, of course; that’s why someone who knows the rules should proofread every piece of print and digital material you produce — at least twice. It’s true the world won’t stop turning if your website, ads, brochures or press releases contain grammatical errors or misspelled words. But for clients and others who recognize those errors when they see them, no matter how good your widget is or how many sales you had last year, your shining armor gets a little smudged when an egregious “irregardless” or rogue apostrophe shows up.
If you work with an agency to produce your marketing materials, a lot of that preliminary proofreading will take place before you ever see a final draft. Most agencies have a caveat that makes clients ultimately accountable for errors, though, so you should always review work before signing off.
If you’re generating your own content and collateral, unless you have a resident English major on staff, consider hiring a professional writer or editor to review what you’re putting out there. PowerPoint presentations, white papers, blogs . . . even tweets deserve a critical eye in these times of 24/7 worldwide scrutiny. Not only will your image be the better for it, you’ll save yourself some embarrassment and make your English teachers proud.
*This is not an error. We know that ‘r’ is missing!