How many times have you hit ‘send’ on a crucial email only to realise too late that you’ve spelt the recipient’s name wrong or forgotten to add a vital link?
How many times have you started to write and just let your thoughts flow and then when you read it back it makes no sense?
How many times do you return to a piece of writing at a later date and realise that there are mistakes in it?
I completely understand, I do it too. That’s why I always get someone else to proofread my writing for me. Yes, you read that right. I get someone else to do my proofreading for me. The problem with trying to proofread your own writing is that you know what it is meant to say. This means that if you have made mistakes, your brain won’t let you see them. Now I’m not saying you shouldn’t proofread your own writing at all, far from it. It is good practice to proofread your own writing but bear in mind that human nature won’t let you see all of the errors.
Can’t I just ask a friend to do it?
Of course, but I like to think of it as the difference between asking a friend to make your wedding cake and hiring a professional cake maker. At the end of the day, you will get a lovely cake no matter who you choose but the one from the professional is going to look so much better.
This is precisely why you should hire a professional proofreader. The end result will look so much more professional and if you a running a business that is exactly what you want. We’ve all seen the scam emails from TV Licensing telling you that your direct debit has failed or from HMRC telling you that you are due a huge refund. How do you know they are a scam? The spelling, punctuation and grammar are always shocking.
If your blog/newsletter/website etc. is littered with mistakes, how will your customers know that it is genuine? Hiring a professional to proofread for you will result in you having increased authority which in turn will make you more appealing to your customers.
Another reason to ensure that your writing is accurate is that people may misunderstand what you are trying to say. You are so passionate about your area of expertise that when you write about it your thoughts flow and become jumbled because you just can’t type fast enough to keep up with them. A proofreader will help you to refine your message so that your knowledge and passion still shine through but much more clearly.
But it’s too expensive!
No, not really. Not when you really think about what is involved. Another common misconception is that proofreading is just reading. We all read, how hard can it be! It really isn’t as simple as that, in fact, it’s so much more than that. I will not just read the sentence, I will analyse it; every letter, every word, every space, every punctuation mark. I will read each sentence multiple times before moving onto the next. I will read it in different ways, with different intonations to make sure it is perfect. I will spend time going through the writing multiple times to make sure it is spot on. Before I even started my business, I spent time, energy and my own money learning the skills that I need to proofread. I will continue to spend time and money studying to hone my skills as my career progresses to ensure that I can offer my clients the best. When you break it down like that, a professional proofreader is not expensive at all.
I really do understand that money can often be a barrier, as a small business owner myself, I am acutely aware that there are far more services on offer that I ‘need’ for my business than I can actually afford. I don’t want price to be a barrier so that is why I offer a range of set price services so that you know upfront exactly what you will be charged and can budget accordingly. With my proofreading prices starting from as little as £1 for a PowerPoint/presentation slide and £10 for a business letter then my services really are accessible.