Sunday, June 19, 2005


I read many blogs. I have so many bookmarked I can't get to them all every month, let alone every week. I enjoy the perspectives, the myriad topics, and the styles & tastes present in this vast cornucopia of the Web.

Today I went back to the blog of a man whose experience I respect greatly: Bob Bly, the ultimate copywriter. He posted a very poignant question that I believe everyone should read:

Has the Internet killed writing and literacy?

I'm sure we've all gone to websites and read content we couldn't understand. We've all received emails from colleagues, friends, even family that look like they switched their spellcheck with a garbage disposal. I find it extremely frustrating, particularly when businesses do it. Yeah, I'm a copywriter, it's my job to turn out copy that's crisp, on-message, and geared toward a specific job. It's also assumed that I won't make any typos or big grammatical errors.

So, as an example, what am I supposed to think when I go to an ad agency's website - one I already know from word-of-mouth, to boot - and I find typos ALL OVER their homepage?

Will I be impressed by their snappy site design? No.
Am I going to think they're a very professional firm, one I'd be proud to work with? Unlikely.
Am I going to contact them about doing business? Only if they want to get their content redone!

If you've got a website, double-check its content for typos. Read it through and say it aloud, to see if anything sounds wonky or doesn't flow. It's the little things, folks. The little things like sentence structure & correct spelling, that make all the difference between a professional look and an amateur.


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