Be “concious” of what you “right”. The importance of peer proofreading in content and copy writing. [Tuesdays: “Write with the Pen of the Masters”]
File name: Article Draft → Revised Article Draft → FINAL ARTICLE DRAFT
Errors found in published content often leads to misinterpretation.
Whether minor or major, errors can leave readers confused or worse, with the wrong information.
In writing, it is a must to check our work for any corrections and missing content.
Even if we do check our work, there are still instances when we might overlook errors despite having reviewed our copy countless times.
Writers normally go through a tedious process of revising their own work multiple times before submitting, sending, or publishing it.
Unfortunately, no matter how excellent a writer or proofreader they might be, it’s highly likely that they’d still miss a few errors, even after numerous edits.
They’re too close to their work that it’s possible their eyes might just glaze over seemingly obvious errors.
This is where peer proofreading comes in.
Reviewing our own copy over and over again makes us more familiar with our work. When we are too close to our work, it becomes more difficult to spot corrections and points for improvement.
Peer proofreading helps us address this concern by having someone else share their own feedback and perspective on our work.
It gives us authors the opportunity to have a fresh set of eyes for our copies and also opens us to possible suggestions that we haven’t considered yet.
Take our firm’s standard operating procedure as an example…
Peer Pen-to-Paper Review (PP2P):
- Print any document or file prior to publishing externally.
- Have a peer actively proofread and check the readability and flow of the content using a pen or pencil.
- The peer cannot be someone who had an active input on the document (written, design, layout, etc.).
- That document is then given back to the author to apply any corrections. Once the revisions have been applied, the document is reprinted and handed back to the PP2P reviewer to compare against the previously edited PP2P draft. This is a continuous process until the content is free from errors.
PP2P is our final process before sending out or publishing any type of content with text such as documents, articles, email marketing, online posters, infographics, and more.
It is important that errors and layout issues don’t overshadow important and useful research or content we’ve written.
Here are some things to take note of:
- No one is great at reviewing his or her own work.
- When content is printed on paper, errors jump out at you that you won’t easily spot on a computer screen!
To give you a better picture, here’s our publishing process for the Dynamic Marketing Communiqué (DMC).
The content writer assigned to write the article oftentimes has his or her draft checked by AT LEAST one colleague from the team as the first step.
Once this is done, the writer then submits the draft to an editor or the person in charge of reviewing and approving this before publishing. Suggested revisions and comments are usually given at this point.
After the initial review and application of the first batch of edits, the process continues. It’s given to someone else who has not seen or reviewed the content beforehand.
Yes, a fresh set of eyes once again!
After the second review and additional edits are applied (if there are any), another review is conducted just to be sure everything is in place and the piece maintains a good flow and structure of ideas.
The final review consists of one last readthrough to check if all revisions have been applied correctly and if there are any errors that might have been missed.
At this point, it’s evident that we really take reviewing and proofreading seriously!
Once everything is ready and the people involved in the process have finalized the content and approved it for publishing, we do tests as an email and as an article page on the website.
We send our DMC articles as an email to all the subscribers on our mailing list and we also publish a copy on the DMC section of the website.
The tests are conducted to make sure that the layout of the content is exactly how we planned it to look like—words that have to be in bold, words that have to be italicized, lines that have to be indentated, observing other right fonts sizes, making sure the images included are positioned properly, and more.
Quite the long process, right? But it works and it’s worth it!
This goes to show how much the team and the company as a whole puts emphasis and importance on the SOP of peer proofreading.
Not only will you be able to address overlooked errors, but you would also be able to get constructive feedback that can make your content better!
Proofreading, although tedious, has a whole lot of advantages.
- Content that is clean, clear, and concise
- Provides you with peace of mind and certainty that your work is fit for publishing and the best that you and the team can make it to be
- Saves time by preventing any additional back and forths on revisions and changes after publishing
- Saves you and the brand you’re writing for any embarrassment, negative feedback, or bad press on grammatical errors, typos, and bad layouting on valuable content you’ve published
- And MORE!
According to GatherContent.com:
“Think of proofreading as the last line of defence before facing the world. You have showered, brushed your teeth, put together a great outfit, and eaten a healthy breakfast.
Proofreading is the last look in the mirror to ensure you don’t have anything stuck in your teeth or a coffee stain on your shirt.”
Why not include this week’s tip as part of your publishing process?
It will give you a whole new perspective on your next writing assignment!
About The Dynamic Marketing Communiqué’s
“Tuesdays: Write with the Pen of the Masters”
Who doesn’t find content writing to be a skill that requires a lot of practice and effort?
In fact, many people may even find copywriting very intimidating.
However, you can be a good writer as long as you have the right tools. You won’t always get things right the first time, but with enough time and practice, you’ll get the hang of it!
When you write a copy for any brand or for your company, your aim is to make an impact and…
…to get people to remember.
Getting people to remember means getting consumers to buy your product or to avail of your service.
And when you get your content to deliver the results you want, THAT is a great copy!
Every Tuesday, we publish content based on tips and insights from the masters of content writing, copywriting, and storytelling.
Become more familiar with ways to write great copy that helps you gain ROI from your efforts, drive profitability, and achieve your business goals.
Learn time-tested tactics that better capture the attention of your target audience, and maximize the benefits of great copywriting.
Hope you found this week’s insights interesting and helpful.
Stay tuned for next Tuesday’s “Write with the Pen of the Masters!”
Head of Marketing
Valens Dynamic Marketing Capabilities
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