In a world where terms like “should of”, “seen as” and “rather then” are becoming more widely accepted, it’s hard to find a writer who appreciates the sanctity of the English language. I often see articles – particularly on social media – where my attention is grabbed by an eye catching title, only to be quickly disappointed by poor grammar and vague references. Sentences that are written as if spoken and finished articles that clearly haven’t been proof-read only serve to convince me that the writing trade is becoming flooded by amateurs and the tabloid companies are paying as little as possible for their stories.
Unfortunately, when I start to read any such article I lose all ability to take the subject seriously and so a potentially valid story becomes disregarded as social media hearsay and I switch to looking at photos of cats and quizes that determine which Harry Potter house I belong to. I hope for the sake of the English Language that other readers have the same idea, and that serious writers still stand a chance in this dog-eat-dog world of freelance journalism.
What is the ‘saving’ you make actually costing your business?
If your landing page or article is provided by a writer who doesn’t have a basic grasp of the English Language (or the spellcheck button) you could be saving a little on the cost of the article, but you could also be losing so much more in terms of custom. Sloppy grammar and simple mistakes might be fine for bored readers on social media, who probably don’t recognise the mistakes themselves, and can quite easily promote an article that spreads idle gossip and personal opinions. But what if your article is reaching out to business owners, entrepreneurs and marketing professionals – ie the money holders? Your business is far more likely to be taken seriously if it captures the attention of educated minds who can be convinced that the business they’re looking at is taking itself seriously.
A writer who takes that extra half hour to check their work for mistakes, who understands the difference between except and accept, and who can word a piece in an interesting tone could keep readers on your page for the duration of the article which could result in more call to action clicks and improved SEO for your business. This would naturally result in increased sales and perhaps even repeat business.
The full package
While the content and wording of an article or landing page are paramount, it is just as important to ensure that the words being used are spelt correctly and used in context. It is far easier to find a cleverly worded article than a well written one. This is where the difference comes into play and it’s a small difference that has a huge impact.
Just imagine having a perfectly worded article with a spelling mistake. The word that’s mispelled is the search term used in search engines. Is your business going to appear at the top of that list? Even if it somehow does, is your prospective client going to give your business the time of day with such a simple error staring them in the face? In my opinion, it’s unlikely. I don’t know how many sites I’ve visited and left beause of a poorly worded, poorly edited piece of work but I do know this; they lost my custom.
Good quality words give your customer peace of mind that they are shopping with a respected business that is taking itself seriously. It assures them that they are dealing with professionals who can be trusted with the small details, which is important for customers. If the smallest details are taken care of, the customer feels sure that they will be taken care of.
The real question
So, the real question is this: can you afford not to employ a writer who takes that extra care, who respects the language they write in and who understands what your customers look for? I think you know the answer…