The Apprentice: Spotting the spelling error in your marketing copy

Spotting the spelling error in your marketing copy


The spelling error that went all over social media
Did you see The Apprentice on BBC1 this week?
Apart from all the usual misplaced confidence, disastrous decision making and Machiavellian manoeuvring from the candidates, one thing stood out for me.
Can you guess what it was? Of course you can!
One of the teams misspelled their product name.
That’s right. They got the name of their product wrong.
I get that the whole premise of the programme is putting the candidates under the most ridiculous pressure to see how they perform, but this is pretty important, don’t you think?
Team TITANS blithely spelled gilet as gillet all the way through their task. So, instead of advertising a sleeveless jacket, according to the Collins English Dictionary they were actually promoting a flighty young woman.
What made matters worse was that they had actually got the spelling right first time, but one of the team insisted it should be spelled with two Ls, and that was that. Nobody thought to double check, and the damage was done.
By the time the error was pointed out to them by Claude Littner, Lord Sugar’s right-hand man, it was already on their website and all over social media.
You’re NOT going to create a positive impression of your business if you can’t get the spelling of your product right.
It doesn’t matter if you’re a multinational corporation or a solo business owner. Make spelling or grammar mistakes on any of your company materials – whether it’s your website, or a flyer, or the side of your van – and people will be put off from doing business with you.
 You won’t even know that the potential customer existed, and that the opportunity to start a new business relationship has been missed.

How to avoid spelling mistakes in your marketing copy

So don’t make the same mistake with your marketing materials. Check your copy. Then check it again. Use my 10 tips for proofreading your own writing to help you.
Better still, get someone else to check it.
And the best solution? Ask a professional to help you. But you knew I was going to say that. Right? 
If you’re not sure where to find a proofreader, my blog posts on how to find a professional proofreader, part one and part two, can help you.
What do you think about errors in marketing copy? Do spelling mistakes on websites or blogs or flyers put you off doing business with a company? Drop me a message in the comments and share your thoughts.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

The Editor's Note

Monthly updates on writing and editing non-fiction, from my desk to yours.

Other articles for you – check them out!