Proofreading helps you maintain credibility.

By
Services for Real Estate Pros with Marte Cliff Copywriting

In just one day this week - September 29 - I came across three instances where lack of proofreading made me think "Do these people even think about what they're writing?"

First was a fundraising letter, dated 9-29, that stressed the importance of failing to proofread is a huge oopsreaching their goal by the end of the quarter. It reminded readers that "We are coming up on the mid-month mark."

Um... no. I think mid-month is long gone.

Next was an email about a product that I'd ordered. It was letting me know that my package had been shipped - on October 2.

Really, and just how did they manage to ship in October when it was still September? I suppose they meant to say that it would arrive then, but that isn't what they wrote.

Then there was the article in our local weekly freebie newspaper.

We've been watching the construction of a new dollar store and seeing the "we're hiring" banners for the last few weeks. So we knew it would be opening before too long.

The article stated that residents would have a new place to shop when the store opened its doors on Thursday (the 29th). Then it went on to an interview with the store manager.

She said they had been very well received in the community and that the store had been busy. OK - and how did they do that when they were just opening that day? Was this a leftover interview with the manager of the other dollar store?

Today's email brought a message with a more common mistake...

The writer had obviously changed his or her mind about how to paraphrase what someone had said. Unfortunately, they forgot to remove what they no  longer wanted, so both versions were there in the sentence. It still made sense, but was repetitive and garbled.

I see this often in blog posts - and catch it when proofreading my own writing. Usually it's just involves a couple of words, as when the writer decides to change "for" to "with," then forgets to delete "for."

The bottom line: Be sure to proofread a couple more times after you've edited your copy. It's far too easy to leave random words here and there.

 

 

Comments (13)

Emily Medvec
eXp Realty LLC - Santa Fe, NM
Broker | Realtor | Serving Santa Fe & Northern NM

No kidding! Auto spell check does not read the content! Good post! 

Oct 01, 2022 11:29 AM
Marte Cliff

Thanks Emily Medvec. No, it doesn't. That's probably why some people write rain or reign when they mean rein. 

 

Oct 01, 2022 11:45 AM
Leanne Smith
Dirt Road Real Estate - Golden Valley, AZ
Relocation to NW AZ with elbow room & more freedom

Very good reminder.  Even when we proof read our own words the research shows if it begins with the correct letter and ends with the correct letter, we may see the correct word even if the word on paper is incorrect.

Oct 01, 2022 11:31 AM
Marte Cliff

Leanne Smith - It really is more difficult to proofread your own work. Some experts recommend reading it backwards, or reading it aloud. Even then, we should catch mistakes like the one our local newspaper made.

I'm still trying to figure out how they came up with that one.

Oct 01, 2022 11:46 AM
Bill Salvatore - East Valley
Arizona Elite Properties - Chandler, AZ
Realtor - 602-999-0952 / em: golfArizona@cox.net

Hi

Enjoyed your blog page, and I added you as a

friend. I would love the follow back. Bill

Oct 01, 2022 11:43 AM
Marte Cliff

Hi @Bill Salvatore. I'd be glad to follow you back, but I already have been following you!

Oct 01, 2022 11:48 AM
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hello Marte - some might write haste makes waist.   And some people might become annoyed at such a simple error.   However, the evidence is clear to me that reading each day can create belly laughs.    

Oct 01, 2022 01:12 PM
Kathy Streib
Cypress, TX
Home Stager/Redesign

Marte- I thought of you today while reading a news report on their app. I had to read it 3 times and still had a difficulty understanding exactly what occurred. 

Oct 01, 2022 02:46 PM
Endre Barath, Jr.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices - Beverly Hills, CA
Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002

Marte all good points, unfortunately  not everyone has good writing skills. Some of us poor legal immigrants from Hungary need to rewrite, proof and do all sorts of stuff and still not have a coherent sentence, like I am writing in this comment:)) Then to boot after the third glass of wine what do you expect:))Endre

Oct 01, 2022 04:38 PM
Aura Alex

Endre Barath, Jr. 

After the third glass of wine, I would probably forget where the heck I was really from, Hungary or Cambodia, I couldn't say! What difference does it make? We all get drunk alike. LOL!!!

Oct 01, 2022 11:30 PM
Anna Banana Kruchten Phoenix Broker

Endre Barath, Jr. you drink wine?

Oct 25, 2022 04:12 PM
Kat Palmiotti
406-270-3667, kat@thehousekat.com, Broker/REALTOR® - Kalispell, MT
Helping your Montana dreams take root

I think I read previously (in one of your posts) that reading something out loud is also useful. I can pick up a lot of errors by doing that!

Oct 02, 2022 04:57 AM
Carol Williams
Although I'm retired, I love sharing my knowledge and learning from other real estate industry professionals. - Wenatchee, WA
Retired Agent / Broker / Property Manager

Hi Marte,
It is so much easier for me to find mistakes in others people's writings than in my own. This is some sort of natural phenomenon of how our brain works. Other people's errors glare at me, but my own mistakes seem to hide from me. I try to read and reread. LOL  

Oct 02, 2022 05:41 AM
Nina Hollander, Broker
Coldwell Banker Realty - Charlotte, NC
Your Greater Charlotte Realtor

Good morning, Marte... I'm a champion proofreader. Back in the 1970's one of my responsibilities in a Fortune 500 company was to oversea the production of our annual report to shareholders. I learned to proofread back then... and it is an acquired skill. By the same token, even if someone doesn't have that acquired skill, there's no excuse not to proof what you've written at least twice if not three times before sending something.

Oct 02, 2022 05:59 AM
Dorie Dillard Austin TX
Coldwell Banker Realty ~ 512.750.6899 - Austin, TX
NW Austin ~ Canyon Creek and Spicewood/Balcones

Good morning Marte,

Unfortunately  not everyone has good writing skills and some may need to take extra time to proof read. It is so important.

Oct 22, 2022 07:44 AM
Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Good morning Marte -  many times people are in such a hurry.  They do not stop to read what they have just written.

Oct 23, 2022 04:17 AM
Roy Kelley
Retired - Gaithersburg, MD

Thank you very much, Marte, for sharing your observations and your advice.

Have an outstanding week.

Oct 23, 2022 09:58 AM
Anna Banana Kruchten Phoenix Broker
HomeSmart Real Estate BR030809000 - Phoenix, AZ
602-380-4886

Marte I'm with Endre Barath, Jr. and Carol Williams on this subject.  Cheers!

Oct 25, 2022 04:13 PM