Mistakes are human, but when it comes to your company’s marketing materials, they simply won’t do. Clean, error-free brochures, websites, and business cards are a big asset for your business. They let your audience know that you’re professional and detail-oriented — things that customers look for in a business. By finding ways to mistake-proof your work, you can create a first impression that inspires confidence.
Find Another Set of Eyes
The best thing you can do to error proof your marketing materials is to run them past a fresh set of eyes. After all, when you spend hours trying to write the perfect paragraph, it’s all too easy to miss the tiny typo in the last sentence. Don’t stop at just one proofreader — the more people you can get, the better. Who should you ask? The friend who always points out typos on menus, or the colleague who complains when people use the wrong form of "its/its’/it’s." If you have room in your budget, it might be worth paying a professional editor to look over your materials.
Step Away From the Brochure
Sometimes, the best thing you can do for your marketing materials is to step away from the screen. It’s a trick professional writers use. Walk away, do something else, and come back later. A short break gives you distance, so when you come back, it’s often easier to spot errors. Take a lunch, or even better, leave the project overnight and attack it in the morning when you’re feeling fresh.
Print it Out
Need to edit something right away? If your eyes are tired from staring at your computer, try printing a hard copy. You can make quick notes on the paper copy as you read and fix the problems when you go back to the digital version. Seeing the document as a whole can help you step back and look at the big picture. Are there transitions between the paragraphs? Do the headings make sense? Another useful trick is to print your materials with different font sizes, spacing, or colours — it’s an easy way to get a new perspective.
Read Out Loud
Great marketing materials have a natural, conversational style that’s easy to read and understand. To get a sense of how your customers might experience your work, try reading it out loud. This is a great way to spot awkward or clunky phrases — if you stumble over them, your readers probably will, too. It’s a good idea to read every draft to yourself until it flows easily.
Pay Attention to the Little Things
It’s only natural to spend most of your time on the body text of a marketing document. After all, it takes up the most space on the page. When a reader wants to know more, however, the little details take center stage. As you proofread, be sure to check for mistakes in these small but crucial details:
- Website address
- Mission statement
- Phone number
- Email address
- Physical address
When it comes to making your own marketing materials, a little extra effort goes a long way. Whether you do it alone or with help, careful proofreading can help you deliver beautiful, error-free documents that make customers want to learn more.