Tips for Using Acronyms in Your Business Writing

Are you confusing and losing potential clients with your alphabet soup?

Did you know that CIA is not just the acronym for the Central Intelligence Agency in the United States? It’s also the acronym for the Culinary Institute of America.

If you are marketing your product or service to an international audience, you need to understand that not everyone will immediately recognize the acronyms you use. People who are new to your field might also not recognize an acronym! You don’t want to risk alienating folks or making them feel like “outsiders” when they don’t know which company or organization you are talking about.

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Interview on Women Developing Brilliance Podcast

I had a wonderful time being interviewed by Kc Rossi, for her Women Developing Brilliance podcast!

You can take a listen as we talk about:

  • Why branding and writing are inseparable
  • The secret to keep creative juices flowing
  • The biggest benefit to a narrow niche

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The Story behind My Tagline

I get a lot of compliments on my tagline – No app can replace me! – so I thought I’d take a moment to mention how it came to be.

Basically, I got tired of seeing creative writers and business folks talking about how they don’t need a copy editor, because they just run their texts through a grammar-check app and that’s good enough.

But the job of a copy editor is really so much more than checking spelling and punctuation. Continue reading

How Copy Editing and Branding Go Hand-in-Hand

When you are establishing and maintaining a brand identity for your business, you need to pay close attention to your text across all of your digital and physical marketing materials. Consistency is of utmost importance in making sure potential customers have a clear understanding of your brand.

brands-floodAs a copy editor, I’ve seen the common problems small businesses have when they are trying to establish their brand identity and gain recognition among potential customers. But it’s not just small businesses that have problems maintaining consistency in their business marketing materials. Every established business goes through staff changes – and when staff changes, it may take new employees a little time to memorize the branding identity manual carefully crafted by their new employer.

This is why it’s crucial to have a good copy editor review your materials. Here are the key branding elements I focus on when I am copy editing for businesses. If you have a copy editor on staff, they need to ensure the consistency of these elements.

1 – Consistency in references to your company name.

Every person in your company – especially every person on your marketing team (including the interns who post on your social media channels) – needs to know the rules for spelling, punctuating, formatting, and capitalizing your company’s full name and common name. Even if they do know the rules, mistakes happen, and this is where having a copy editor review your website and brochure text can help.

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How Being a Poet Made Me a Better Copy Editor

I think it’s safe to say the mobile app developer I used to work for didn’t hire me because of my experience as a poet, but because of my knowledge of social media and my prior experience with converting technical jargon into something the general public could understand. My official title was Senior Copy Editor and I spent most of my days reviewing text and providing suggestions for error messages, tutorials, infographics, and occasionally for an app mascot.

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What surprised me most about that job was how I came to realize my fifteen years of working at the craft of poetry seemed as important as my resume’s twenty years of experience in editing and proofreading. Continue reading

How about a date?

Dates are one of the most crucial pieces of information that many websites and business marketing materials tend to omit.

The Top 5 Business Marketing Materials that Should Always Include a Calendar Date

1. Publications. All reports and published pamphlets or books should include a date of publication on the title page. This is especially important for industry reports that may be compared year-to-year, or which may be referenced by Calendarresearchers. A business or industry report is useless to anyone reading it if they cannot tell how current the information is.

2. Press releases. It is of little use to issue a press release on your web site if a potential customer or client (or a reporter!) cannot tell when the news was announced. Great! You opened a new division! Oh, wait, that was how many years ago? Continue reading