The Importance of Proofreading: Proofread – and Proofread Again!

Proud of your content and design, you finally publish or go to print with your latest online or print marketing material.  You checked it over, maybe even a few times, making sure it made sense and that there were no errors.

After the piece is published or printed, you distribute it with confidence to the masses, waiting for positive responses: compliments, new clients, or increased sales. However, much to your disbelief, you discover an error, either on your own, or even worse, thanks to the observant eye of a recipient.

No matter how polished the rest of your presentation may be, the error blares, mocking your diligent efforts and undermining your intent to put forth a professional reflection of your business.  The error becomes a distraction, both to you and the potential customer to whom this may be the first introduction to your business and its professionalism.

If the marketing material is published online, redemption comes fairly easy with a simple fix; although the past cannot be undone, the present and future can be saved.  However, when it comes to printed copy, even the smallest mistakes prove costly; reprinting is often not an option, and the mistake remains until the budget allows the expense of updated marketing material.

The above scenario is all too common.  To prevent typos and punctuation, spelling, and grammatical errors from undermining your marketing material, be sure to follow these simple steps:

  • When composing the material using Word or another word processing program, pay attention to spelling, punctuation, and grammar suggestions; don’t just ignore those squiggly lines!
  • Review your work before it goes to the printer; don’t rely on the printer to catch your mistakes.
  • After receiving your first proof, proofread it carefully; rather than rushing to deliver it straight back to the printer to go to print, look it over again with fresh eyes at a later point.  Often, our minds trick our eyes into seeing things correctly written, failing to catch misspellings and omitted words.
  • Have a second set of eyes also look over the material twice.  We are all human!
  • Request a second proof from your printer after the first round of changes have been made. Double check for inaccuracies, paying close attention to  phone numbers and contact information.

Remember, with All About Writing, writing help is just a call or click away for all of your editing and proofreading needs. Whether your project be business, professional, or academic in nature, we can help you put your best foot forward with a polished and well-presented piece.

by Christa Riddle

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