Ask yourself where your prospects are most likely to find you. Where your clients have found you. Online, right? Whether your business has a physical location or not, Google (still the most-used search engine) will direct people to your social media profiles, your online listings, and your website...and usually all of those.
Take a field trip and wander around a shopping district or mall where you live. Enjoy window shopping...peruse the wares of the shops in the area. What draws you in? What entices you to enter the store? Well, usually it's what you see on display, and how it's displayed. You feel a connection that moves you to open the door to explore further.
Your website (or your social media page if you don't have a website) is your non-physical business's front window. You want it to be attractive, to accurately show what you offer, to be welcoming. A good way to get some feedback on your site is to ask a couple of friends who don't know much about your work to review it in detail. What draws them in? What entices them to click to explore the site? With what do they feel a connection?
Take an objective look at your site yourself. What does your home page (the front window) say about you? What pages do you include? What images? What links? Are you including everything a first-time reader would need to know and understand about you and your work? Are you offering important take-aways?
And key point...does the site represent you accurately, authentically? If your home page is full of run-on sentences and poor grammar, your prospect is going to go elsewhere, no matter what goodies you offer.
There's a solution! The Word Doctor offers a helpful service to ensure your site or page IS accurate and authentic. I'll take a detailed look at your wording and layout to ensure it's the best it can be. (More info here.)
Keep your front window fresh and clean, and entice more customers to enter!
"I just had a baby looking for a job to work at home anybody let me I have great Information technology and networking skills."
This request came from a social media post I ran across. Granted it's "just" social media, this young woman was requesting job leads, and yet her post was so poorly written I can't imagine she got many leads from it.
You never know where your words will go, or who might see and react to them. Writing must be clear, precise, and error-free to present a professional appearance to any prospective employer, client, or customer. Your writing style gives the first impression of your intelligence, work ethic, and motivation.
You may be tempted to dismiss this thought as trivial, but think about it objectively. Let's say that someone who read this request copied it verbatim and sent it to someone who needed those services. That person will be reviewing many similar requests and resumes. and will evaluate next steps based on first impressions. The first impression of this writer is not professional.
The same applies to prospecting for new clients in your business. You want to help more people by having them hire you. What then is your first impression on others? Do your social media and blog posts appear professional? Do they clearly share the teaching and message you want to convey? Are they error-free?
I've had a few rebuttals when I share these ideas from people stating that skills and intent should be what matter. Perhaps, yes...however if your first impression creates a block in that path, then it's time to change!
(I know a great proofreader!)
Even speaking as an editor/proofreader and as The Word Doctor, I have to say in all honesty that grammatical perfection is overrated. "Always" is, in my estimation, an impossible goal, and usually is inappropriate.
Let me explain.
If you follow me on social media, you know that I constantly urge followers to carefully spell check and proofread their business writing, regardless of the medium. Whether a social media post, blog post, article, or email, you will be judged (right or wrong, like it or not) on how you come across to prospects. You may appear careless or ignorant when neither is true.
And yet your authentic style of communicating may be casual, friendly, and all your own. Using ellipses (...) rather than dashes or commas may be your "thing" and there is nothing wrong with that. Using words and phrases in a way that is authentic to you but not necessarily perfect AP style is just fine. You will reach those people who are drawn to not only what you say, but how you say it. Bottom line: be authentic!
There are basic rules of conduct, however: using their/they're/there correctly, lay vs. lie, proper punctuation and sentence structure, etc. Ignoring these customs is what gets writers in trouble. There's a big difference between stylistic and simply incorrect. "Incorrect" leads to not only judgment, but mis-interpretation of your message.
When you're writing casually for friends and family, as long as your message is clear I can't see why it must be perfect...unless you're even more of a grammar nerd than I am! But as I've stated so often, in business writing, perfection balanced with authenticity is the way to go.
Wisdom...or a great proofreader...understands the balance!