Proof Before You Post

I often share articles and posts by other individuals and organizations, that I think would be of value to individuals in the PR & Communication industry as well as those who who need to learn about it.  This morning I saw a tweet with a link to an article with some PR tips. While I instinctively wanted to re-tweeet and then read the article a little later, I had somehow decided that I would click on the link and read the article just to make sure that the content actually addressed the article’s title in the tweet.

Much to my dismay, the article had many spelling and grammatical errors. Now this was posted by an organization that offers PR/ communications services. While I am not writing this post to highlight the grammatical misfortunes of the organization or the author of the article, I do wish to emphasize the significance of proof reading any sort of written work before making it public; Proof Before You Post.

Now, I do not claim to be a master of the english language, as a matter of fact, spelling has been and continues to be a sore thumb for me. However, my spelling inadequacies is no reason for me to publish a blogpost with incorrectly spelt words.

DISCLAIMER: I am a Trinidadian graduate student who was taught the “Queen’s English” and now studies in the US. Put simply, I am in the process of changing my spelling from British English to American English. Why there is even British and American spelling? I don’t know. People say the American’s like to do things their own way! Who knows! *shrugs*

We must always be aware of our writing; some people may be great at coming up with content, but their writing may not be the best. The situation can also be reversed, know how to use your skills.

Poor writing can actually reduce confidence in your brand, service or product. It can put doubt in the mind of the reader. It prompts the questions: If they cannot even spell, then how will they properly service me? How do they do business? Are these people professionals?

It is important to recognize that the content in any document, article, post or website that bears your company’s name or logo, is a direct representation of your business. Your stakeholders will have more interaction with your organization via published words rather than a spoken conversation.

So, how do you avoid this public embarrassment? You proof read. It is a simple process that many take for granted. Re reading your writing before it goes public, is one of the best ways to mitigate publishing errors.

  • It is also a good idea to have someone else read the article; a fresh pair of eyes may pick up on things that the writer may have overlooked. A second reader will also give you the opportunity to ensure that your writing effectively conveys your desired message.
  • Another good habit to develop is reading over the article or post even after it is published. Sometimes, as you read your post through the eyes of a random visitor to your website or blog, you pick up on little things that can be changed to make the article easier to read and digest. Pay special attention to punctuation; specifically the use of commas and periods.
  • Make sure that you use words in context by checking words in a dictionary or thesaurus.

Remember that there is no one way to  write, write the way that you like to write. Just make sure that when your’e done, what you’ve written is creating the impression that you intended to create and conveys the message that you want to convey.

Here are a couple helpful tips I found at PR Daily:
15 tips to make the writing process less hellish

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