I hate it when I make mistakes. I really beat myself up about it. Oh, I do all the right post-mistake things – figure out how it happened, plan to make sure it won’t happen again, apologize if necessary, and so on. But I have a hard time dealing with it when my performance doesn’t meet my expectations – and my expectations for myself are high.
Okay, that’s my issue. And it’s true that we’re all human, we all make mistakes, and nobody’s perfect. Still, that’s no reason not to have perfection as your goal. After all, if you’re having brain surgery, do you want a surgeon whose goal is perfection? Or one who thinks a mistake here and there is no big deal?
Now, blogs and emails aren’t brain surgery – I get that. If they contain a mistake, the primary consequence is likely to be embarrassment, not death or serious physical harm. But recently I saw a blog with the line: “Below are BLANK tips for …”
I understand that when you’re writing lists, you don’t always know how many items you’re going to come up with until you’re finished – but that “BLANK” should have been caught and corrected when the blog was proofed.
Another recent email that made me shake my head had a subject line of “event name edited” and a salutation of “Dear NAME”. Still another was absolutely blank – the entire email, nothing there.
I don’t know how these folks dealt with their mistakes – whether they shrugged them off or castigated themselves thoroughly (or even noticed). And I think that the cause of the errors was likely busy people trying to do too much in never enough time. But when it comes to your content marketing, your goal should always be perfection.
Because if you make mistakes in a blog, email, white paper, book or whatever, how can your customers expect you to not make mistakes when you’re delivering your actual product?
Yes, there’s irony in the fact that people rarely notice when something is right but they notice when it isn’t. That’s just the way things are. So here’s one blog and email marketing tip: Proofread – not just on your computer screen. Send yourself test emails. Print them out and read them. Ask someone else to look them over. Do it any number of ways, but proofread!
Go here to see my post with actual examples of internet marketers’ email subject line goofs.
What are some of the most amusing email mistakes you’ve seen? Share them!