Even a minute spelling mistake or typo can change the whole meaning of context and that too into the weirdest manner. You may have written carefully and copy edited the content with even extra care. But still, errors may creep in. This is why proofreading is considered inevitable and imperative. Now, what all should you look out for while proofreading? Underlying is the professional proofreading checklist which can guide you properly.
When it comes to a business copy, staying in line with the default brand tone is very important. And in case if it’s a blog post or social message, the distinct voice of author should be made to reflect; it has to be a bit personalized.
For instance, your company may be having an encouraging and informal friendly tone but one of your writers is adapting corporate tone that is a bit harsh and apathetic. This should be corrected or else that particular blog, comment or post may appear odd.
A major of part of tone issues may have already been fixed in the previous editing processes but still if anything is found, you should work on it while proofreading mistakes.
Product and persona placing
These type of errors can easily intrude to the proofreading phase. Fixing positions is quite easy. Adding a descriptor on a sentence or selecting another synonym can fix the issue.
Product and persona are the two elements of positioning that needs to be handled. Any mistake in product positioning can misrepresent the offerings of your company. Using incorrect language in case of a persona can lead to persona positioning mistakes.
With the choice of correct words, such positioning related problems can be solved.
This is something really crucial. Having an idea is one thing but presenting it is an appealing manner through logically connected sentences and paragraphs is another.
Putting down everything without any logic transitions can repel away readers. There should be proper rational connectivity with what precedes and follows a sentence and also paragraph. Absence of a well-defined outline is the main reason for poor transition.
If there are any inconsistent hops between sentences or paragraphs, you must work on those transitions during the proofreading and editing process.
Grammatical mistakes are the worst thing that can happen to you. It in fact questions the very basics of your language proficiency and writing skills. This can happen even to the best copywriters, especially when they work under strenuous situations and tight deadlines.
Proofreading grammar mistakes is a process where being hyper-vigilant is important. Check for each and every line and usage carefully to find and fix grammatical harms done on the copy.
Style guide steadiness
Every company will have specific style guide. It may seem to be an irrelevant thing when viewed from peripheral aspects but the impact made on prospects is significant. Most companies offering proofreading services are acquainted with this fact.
Capitalizing propositions exceeding certain number of letters in headings can be a style followed by some companies. Writing a post without considering this can place the copy out from the rest of your blogs.
While proofreading all aspects of style guides must be cross-checked with the copy. Find and do the needed replacements.
Cultural nuances, jargons and spellings specific to a country
When you are focusing on a global audience, using jargons, spellings and cultural nuances specific to a particular country in your writings can be troublesome. With web, people from across the globe can access your content and hence country-specific elements should be eliminated. Companies offering prepress services can be of help.
You can add a pinch of localized language if your main targets are locals but it should be comprehensible by others from other countries but from your industry. Check for the country or locality specific elements ad do the needed editing, replacement and deletions.
People are turned on more by images. This holds true especially when they are simply scrolling and having a speed-read. So, the images must have a contextual sense.
While proofreading check if the images are making any sense by itself or does it needs any explanation. If the image is not self-explanatory, remove it and add something that conveys the idea in a clear and appealing manner.
Image and data credits
If you are taken data or images from an external party, give proper credits. Else, you may be inviting trouble. Sometimes, writers forget this in a rush. If you find anything while proofreading, do the needful. Getting legal papers is something you never want to happen.
Spellcheck and Broken links
Last but not the least, spelling must be correct. You may seek the help of an in-built spell checking tool or else copy the whole content to a Word document. You can see green and red lines under words that need to be fixed. Another important aspect to check and fix are the Broken links. All links should direct to where it is supposed to and they should actually work.
By fixing the aforementioned mistakes, it’s pretty sure that you are going to get a great content piece. If you are looking for an external pair of expert eyes, hire a professional proofreading company to get the best copies ready for publishing.