Make your marketing materials mistake-proof
Entrepreneurs can often be short on time and busy multi-tasking, but one thing that should never be overlooked when creating marketing materials is quality. You may find it boring or time-consuming, but if you claim that you are a “perfectionist” or that “attention to detail” sets you apart from your competitors, be certain that your marketing materials reflect those statements.
There are many tips and tricks that you can use when performing quality assurance or proofreading documents:
- Ensure all information including company logos and mission statements, web addresses, phone numbers, including area codes and toll-free numbers are accurate (1-800 vs. 1-866 or 1-888)
- When possible, print documents out and edit them in a different coloured ink
- Read the document aloud to identify issues that may not be apparent when reading silently
- Using a spell checker on your document will not catch all errors, specifically words that are often incorrectly interchanged or incorrect sentence structure.
- Exclude prices on your materials. This could prove to be more costly as they will require a re-print if/when you change your prices
- Ask other people to review documents; many sets of eyes are more likely to catch mistakes
If you work alone, try not to edit documents the same day you wrote them. Let your eyes take a break and you will be more liable to catch errors that you may have made the first time around. Depending on your budget, you may want to hire a professional proofreader to go over the final edits of your marketing materials. If you are in a specialized field, hire an industry-specific proofreader who is familiar with terms used in a particular industry.
Use the same stringent rules for polished materials when communicating with your employees as you do with your customers. If you create a culture of professionalism with internal memos, emails and reports, it will likely be easier to communicate professionally in all areas of marketing.
When working with financials or creating contracts with vendors, not only do want to make sure the documents are clearly written, but that you have not made any errors with your numbers. A misplaced decimal point could prove to be more costly than a simple pamphlet re-print.
Remember — Your business' marketing materials may be the first contact potential clients have with your company, make sure you present a polished, professional image from the start!