Does grammar affect credibility in your eyes?

220 replies
I know everyone gets sick of people complaining about and correcting grammatical errors, but how do YOU feel about them?

Here's what I'm talking about:

When you are reading someone's sales copy and they have grammatical or spelling errors, do you automatically think less of them and/or their product?

What about when they have such errors in their guides or videos?

If you're watching a video and the instructor says, "I seen this one other place," do you take less faith in what he/she is saying?

I don't automatically discount a person or product because of this, but I definitely do take them into consideration.

I'm just curious as to how others feel about this.
#affect #credibility #eyes #grammar
  • Profile picture of the author stevedevane
    It drives me crazy, but I've been a writer/editor for years. If I see 1-2 mistakes, it probably won't influence my buying decision, but much more than that I certainly take it into account.
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    • Profile picture of the author Chase Shelby
      I do take a big notice for grammar. A few errors does not bother me one bit though. I know I have many errors even though I try to be as correct as possible. It happens.

      If the sales copy has a lot of errors though, I do tend to frown on that. If their sales copy isn't good enough then what will their product look like? You would think that at the very least they would make sure their sales letter is flawless.

      In videos I tend to give more leeway, since they are doing it "live" and I'd rather see a small mistake rather than a big edit taking a chunk of content out.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jeff Burritt
    Bad grammar and punctuation may be nothing. Or, it may be a reflection of the author's commitment to quality and thoroughness. I can't help but think the latter. I may give an artist or genius some lenience for a sloppy presentation; but not a marketer.
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    • Profile picture of the author cyberdenizen
      I wouldn't make a big deal out of a few mistakes (unless I wrote the article or the copy). However, if the article or the sales page is replete with grammatical errors and/or misspellings, I'd navigate away from the web page.
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  • Profile picture of the author WiFi
    100% reflects poor intelligence/professionalism personally speaking.
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  • Profile picture of the author jamesrich1
    If there is only a couple of errors I look past it. If every sentence has a spelling and grammar error then it turns me off. I look at the intent of the content. If it helps me but has a few errors I am still impressed.
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  • Profile picture of the author stevet563
    I think that you must do everything in your power to make good copy so people will want to buy your product or service. It doesn't take that much time to get it right the first time. The time it takes to make sure everything is right will be time well spent.

    It may also be a distraction to your prospect and get them to wondering if your product will have flaws as well. Just my opinion.
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  • Profile picture of the author wiggleofjudas
    I agree with a lot of people here. Maybe my standards are high, but nothing annoys me more than someone using poor grammar/spelling/usage, especially when they are trying to sell me something.

    Your language use is how you present yourself to the world. Much more important than a nice suit or good haircut in my opinion.
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    • Profile picture of the author The Content King
      Originally Posted by wiggleofjudas View Post

      I agree with a lot of people here. Maybe my standards are high, but nothing annoys me more than someone using poor grammar/spelling/usage, especially when they are trying to sell me something.

      Your language use is how you present yourself to the world. Much more important than a nice suit or good haircut in my opinion.
      Exactly how I would have put it.
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  • Profile picture of the author AlexRyan
    Bad grammar is a turn-off, and it counts against the salesman, in my eyes.
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    • Profile picture of the author JiuJitsuSweep
      Originally Posted by AlexRyan View Post

      Bad grammar is a turn-off, and it counts against the salesman, in my eyes.

      came in to post this

      if they are sloppy with their presentation, then what does that say about the product in question?
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      • Profile picture of the author billyme
        If the grammar is really bad, it makes it so much easier to look at the other 1000 products on a subject. I'm not a stellar writer, but if the selling page has poor quality (and likely outsourced) content, then why would the product be any different. Those are just my two cents though.
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  • Profile picture of the author Willie Crawford
    I can't help but notice it.

    Whether or not it affects my buying decision depends
    upon what they are selling.

    For example, if they are a programmer and have spelling
    mistakes, I might assume there are mistakes in their code
    too... then again, I may assume that they outsourced the
    programming.

    The copy and professionalism has to basically fit the
    product/image, or I probably won't buy. That decision
    is probably even made at the subconscious level.


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  • Profile picture of the author Jacqueline Smith
    As a proofreader and editor, I always notice.

    Does it bother me? Depends on the severity.

    If the grammar is extremely poor, I will definitely wonder about the quality of the product.

    Minor mistakes.....I can live with those.

    In my opinion....don't take any chances....hire a proofreader
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  • Profile picture of the author Webpromotion
    Personally, it drives me nuts.

    But when purchasing a product, when looking at a sales page, I force myself to forgive them.
    Why?
    Because..... at the end of the day, it's not about the grammar. It's about the information that is important.
    The grammar is not going to make me money, the information is.

    I cannot tell you how many gold nuggets of information I have acquired from cr@ppy sales pages and posts. Sometimes the person writing the information is from another country---English not being their language.
    You might argue that they should of hired a translator, but maybe they did.
    There are some very bad translators.

    Bad sales page grammar does not mean a bad product.
    I have seen products with top notch grammar that turned out to be total cr@p.
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  • Profile picture of the author BridgetSielicki
    I always cringe when I see bad grammar and my gut reaction is to bypass the product. Sometimes I'll still buy depending on the product, but not always. Bad grammar definitely starts you out on the wrong foot with a lot of buyers.
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  • Profile picture of the author Richard Phillips
    Although I hate do be a judge of character, it really does bother me for some reason. I see the errors and then the next thought in my mind is "What else is wrong with the product?"
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    • Profile picture of the author kiwiviktor81
      It bothers me a lot. If I'm in a rush, I just scan the text and see if any errors jump out at me. If they do, I assume the vendor has the same commitment to quality service and product creation as they do to spelling/grammar, and I move on.
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    • Profile picture of the author nellterry
      Drives me nuts. But then, I'm a writer, so I notice. Advertisements on TV and in print are error-free, so why should we expect less from sales copy on the internet?

      The easy solution is to hire an editor to review your copy. If the budget doesn't allow for this, revising after letting your work chill for awhile usually does the trick.

      I am OCD about checking my copy before I send it out the door, so I guess I expect people selling to me to take the same time with their written products...
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  • Profile picture of the author Lee Murray
    I hate to sound crass, but I really have no tolerance for excessive grammatical errors. One or two slip-ups amidst otherwise excellent content is okay. Especially on the internet, however, where you can very quickly check spelling, punctuation, and definitions on the fly, it really reflects an overall lazy mindset when errors abound on a sales page.

    Seriously, if the page selling the product looks like garbage, how can you expect the product itself to be any different?
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  • Profile picture of the author NetLadyUSA
    I use to feel that way but being on the internet for a while, I see a lot of people from other countries that use English as a secondary language. I just learn to cut people some slack. At the same time, it does make it hard to understand and relate with them at times. An english speaking, uneducated entrepreneur isn't all that bad either but it makes it hard to give credibiltiy so I definately see where you might have a problem with that. It's something that does get my radar up.
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      I don't worry much about grammar or spelling mistakes, unless the person is selling their services as a writer or going on a wombat-spree.

      Busted and badly confused syntax from someone who seems to speak English as a first language bothers me, though. Makes it very difficult to be sure you're understanding what the author is trying to convey. And it's very often a sign of careless and sloppy thinking.

      If the author speaks English as a second language, my only concern is, "Can I understand this without the price in time overshadowing the claimed benefit?"

      Interestingly, a smart person writing in a second language may mangle the syntax, but they will usually do so in a consistent pattern. That makes figuring their message out a simple process in most cases.


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  • Profile picture of the author P.Sharma
    To be completely honest it does put me off to bad and makes me realise that
    the guy is probably losing money because he could not get someone to proof
    read it.

    Then again I have a few coders who can code flawlessly but write bad english,
    in those cases I would buy the product anyway.

    But overall, I think that bad grammar is a big NO-NO for me
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  • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
    So many ironic posts, so little time.



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    • Profile picture of the author Nightengale
      Poor spelling and grammar drive me NUTS and yes, it definitely makes me think less of the marketer. (Disclaimer: I'm a writer so I'm especially sensitive to such mistakes.)

      That said, it does depend on the person, the product and the context.

      Poor grammar and spelling in a sales letter or article is completely unacceptable, although I understand that a few typos may slip through and I take that into account. Hey, it happens (although the person SHOULD have had enough time to proofread their work or have someone else do it for them).

      Poor spelling and grammar is more understandable in forums or social networks since people are posting on the fly and don't always see their own mistakes. Forums and social networks are less formal, more relaxed. Goodness knows, I make my share of spelling/grammar mistakes on forums and social networks!

      Again, the occasional typo is more forgivable and it's fairly easy to distinguish a typo from truly bad grammar. So yes, context is important and I take it into account.

      But using "your" instead of "you're" or "effect" instead of "affect" -- even on forums -- is hard to forgive. Unless it's a non-native English speaker, it just shows sheer laziness, along with a lack of professionalism.

      I see a lot of people defending their lack of proper grammar. "Hey, if the information is good, why does it matter?" It's the wrong question.

      The better question is: "Why is proper grammar important?" Answer: Bad grammar reflects a lack of professionalism, which reflects poorly on you and whatever it is that you're selling.

      Whether you agree with me or not is irrelevant. It's not a question of personal taste. It's a BUSINESS DECISION. The point is that poor grammar/spelling DOES affect your credibility negatively in most people's eyes. So if you're trying to make a buck on the Internet, why on earth would you make it harder on yourself to do so by using bad grammar???

      People who make fun of others who point out bad grammar, calling them "grammar cops" and such, are missing the point. It's not really about the grammar per se. It's about professionalism.

      Are you a business professional? Or not?

      Michelle

      P.S. And don't even get me started on text-speak in places OTHER than texts! It's like nails on a chalkboard!
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  • Profile picture of the author Istvan Horvath
    When you are reading someone's sales copy and they have grammatical or spelling errors, do you automatically think less of them and/or their product?
    I am not a native English speaker and I may not write perfect sentences... however, as a linguist I am extremely annoyed by spelling and/or grammatical errors (the one that I recognize, of course!). And yes, usually, I think less of the author, especially, if I know English is their first language.

    For me it comes down to respect toward your own culture and mother tongue; to professionalism and exigence. But I am old school...
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    • Profile picture of the author HeySal
      Originally Posted by Istvan Horvath View Post

      I am not a native English speaker and I may not write perfect sentences... however, as a linguist I am extremely annoyed by spelling and/or grammatical errors (the one that I recognize, of course!). And yes, usually, I think less of the author, especially, if I know English is their first language.

      For me it comes down to respect toward your own culture and mother tongue; to professionalism and exigence. But I am old school...
      I've also got a linguistics background. Conversely, it has made me more tolerant of mistakes in spelling and grammar in social context such as forums. If someone uses the wrong form of "to" "too" or "two" in a sentence, I just take it that they were thinking more about what they were saying than watching their typing. Expecting clean copy in a conversation is just plain over the top.

      However, there are certain mistakes that subconsciously register a person's social class and education as being low. Sorry about that, it's just the way it is. When I see "I done" instead of "I did" or "I seen" instead of "I saw" it makes me wince because what is being conveyed is poor education and that's not a good way to stake your position as an authority in anything.

      People also will forgive a couple of minor mistakes in sales copy or within a product, but repeated mistakes will lessen credibility, whether someone consciously admits that or not.

      Even if you think that clean copy in sales material doesn't matter - ask yourself this.......
      How many truly successful people do you see who have business materials with hella mistakes in it? You don't. Nuff said.
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  • Profile picture of the author Marvin Johnston
    If I see a misspelling or two, I'll take note of it and keep that in mind while reading the rest of the sales pitch.

    But if I see more bad "grammer" coupled with misspellings, the chance of my buying anything is close to zero.

    A lack of attention to spelling and grammar is probably an indicator that the material is not worthy my attention.

    Marvin

    PS - I am excluding bad spelling and grammar done on purpose ... those are sometimes a joy to read.
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  • Profile picture of the author officer_iron
    I'm glad to see that I'm not the only one that notices these mistakes. I thought I was going crazy for a while because I noticed so many errors in products and copy. I never noticed anyone mention it.

    P.S. Is everyone that posts on this thread rereading their posts a million times before submitting like I am?
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  • Profile picture of the author timpears
    Poor grammar drives me crazy. If someone doesn't know the difference between their and there, and other simple crap like that, then why should I pay them to inform me about what ever it is they are trying to sell me.
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  • Profile picture of the author UMS
    I used to do a lot of programming in the past. To be a good programmer, you need a good eye for detail and be a little bit anal.

    I tended to notice that my work colleagues that wrote sloppy documentation or emails, generally had the same approach to their programming. I can assure you that there's nothing worse than having to read through sloppily written code.

    Same applies to sales pages. If there are lots of spelling and grammatical errors, I make the assumption that the same lack of attention and care applies to their product.
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  • Profile picture of the author Joshua Rigley
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    Jeez, and here I was thinking it would be a minority of people who are bothered by poor grammar and spelling. Then again, maybe we're just a vocal minority.

    Still, it doesn't make sense to alienate a minority of your potential customer base, especially if you're just being lazy to begin with.

    It drives me nuts, but if I really, really want the product, I may just ignore the mistakes and get the product. Then again, every spelling/grammar mistake distracts me from the message, on both a conscious and subconscious level, so that can ruin the desire for the product if there's a lot of errors.

    Then again, I have an excellent eye for proof reading, and I HAVE noticed spelling/grammar errors in the sales copy of some very well established Warriors (I'm looking at YOU Paul ), but these tend to be few and far between. So it does happen, even to the best and most careful of writers. I do keep that in mind.
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  • Profile picture of the author richjr72
    Grammar and punctuation, in my opinion, reflects on your credibility.

    When I see typos and errors, I just make a mental note of it. I do not go around and criticize other peoples mistakes. I think it is even more tasteless, and that, is even worse for your credibility too.
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  • Profile picture of the author Karen Connell
    Bad grammar or spelling on a sales page and I click the 'x'.

    If someone is trying to sell me something, the least they can do is to have their sales page checked.

    I have lost count of the number of times I have seen 'there' instead of 'their', 'hear' instead of 'here' and, my personal favourite:rolleyes:, 'your' instead of 'you're'.

    I was recently asked to review a product and the vendor was not happy that I pointed out his bad spelling. In fact, he was quite offensive when I refused to provide a positive review for him to use. The spelling mistakes still appear on his sales page in big red letters. That speaks volumes about his commitment to provide a good product for his purchasers.

    Regards

    Karen
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  • Profile picture of the author MiFortuna
    With a video I am more lenient. We unconsciously have habits when speaking that may be due to the area or country someone is living in. Even someone from the UK speaking correctly may sound strange to someone from the US. However, in a sales copy I tend to be somewhat more critical to grammar mistakes.
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  • Profile picture of the author StevenJones
    Dos thise lok profesionael? No it doesn't. Always do your best when it comes to grammar.

    Someone told me to stage grammar error to make it look more human. Don't know the psychology behind that though. Wouldn't go that route!
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  • Profile picture of the author MartinWinWeb
    Isn't it all about the message ?

    Aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn’t mttaer in waht oredr the ltters in a wrod are; the olny iprmoetnt fatcor is taht the frist and lsat ltteres be at the rghit pclae. The rset can be a total mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed? ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Petrty amzanig, huh?
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    • Profile picture of the author John Coutts
      Originally Posted by MartinWinWeb View Post

      Isn't it all about the message ?

      Aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn’t mttaer in waht oredr the ltters in a wrod are; the olny iprmoetnt fatcor is taht the frist and lsat ltteres be at the rghit pclae. The rset can be a total mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed? ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Petrty amzanig, huh?
      Yes, that is pretty amazing, but if I found that in a sales letter, I certainly would not hit the buy button!

      Communicating with others on a forum like this doesn't require perfection every time, but I do feel that anyone running a serious business should present themselves in the most professional light they can, and that surely includes the spelling and grammar found in a sales letter.

      John.
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  • Profile picture of the author barbling
    For me, it depends.

    A few mistakes, I'll let pass, but massive amounts of chatspeak/etc/ and I'm out of there.

    I have very little tolerance for dumbing down.
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  • Profile picture of the author Eduard Stinga
    We're marketers, everything that we present should be high quality. Of course, a few mistakes is OK, we're humans, we make mistakes. But as someone said above as well, if the grammar, spelling, punctuation, etc. are 100% correct it shows that the marketer has a high standard for quality.
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    • Profile picture of the author John Coutts
      When I read sales copy, I expect to find good writing that has no grammatical or spelling errors. Finding one or two here or there is probably acceptable most of the time, but when they come thick and fast, I walk away.

      Let's face it, the only way we can judge the marketer and his or her product online is through the sales page. We read the sales page seeking a reason to buy, and when we find careless errors it simply puts obstacles in the way.

      John.
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  • Profile picture of the author Robert Puddy
    im with Paul...it doesnt bother me at all. In fact it doesnt bother the majority of people. just the ones it does bother are most vocal about it.
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    • Profile picture of the author Martin Avis
      Originally Posted by Robert Puddy View Post

      im with Paul...it doesnt bother me at all. In fact it doesnt bother the majority of people. just the ones it does bother are most vocal about it.
      I'm not sure that's true anymore. Those of us who are bothered by it know that the merest hint of criticism for someone's spelling or grammar invokes howls of protest. I've seen everything from suggestions of copy-naziism to outright accusations of racism when someone has dared to point out that poor spelling and mangled grammar can adversely affect sales, so it is unsurprising that most of us keep quiet.

      Whether the majority or the minority of folks act on their dislike of a poorly written sales page is immaterial. What should matter to us as marketers is that some people will use it as an excuse to close the page.

      Even that means only 10% of potential sales are lost, it seems to me a very good reason to sort it out.

      The odd typo is one thing - and I doubt any of us are free from that. It is endemic ignorance that jars.

      Yes, many of us do judge books by their covers, rightly or wrongly.

      Martin
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      • Profile picture of the author Robert Puddy
        Originally Posted by Martin.Avis View Post

        I'm not sure that's true anymore. Those of us who are bothered by it know that the merest hint of criticism for someone's spelling or grammar invokes howls of protest. I've seen everything from suggestions of copy-naziism to outright accusations of racism when someone has dared to point out that poor spelling and mangled grammar can adversely affect sales, so it is unsurprising that most of us keep quiet.

        Whether the majority or the minority of folks act on their dislike of a poorly written sales page is immaterial. What should matter to us as marketers is that some people will use it as an excuse to close the page.

        Even that means only 10% of potential sales are lost, it seems to me a very good reason to sort it out.

        The odd typo is one thing - and I doubt any of us are free from that. It is endemic ignorance that jars.

        Yes, many of us do judge books by their covers, rightly or wrongly.

        Martin
        Its about communication not the syntax...if your good at telling the story then people will just read right on past grammar foopaas without even noticing them

        ITs the way you tell em that counts
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  • Profile picture of the author OO
    Grammar affects credibility so much. Who trusts a guy to teach them something if they cannot even master the basics of language?
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  • Profile picture of the author Davee
    When mistakes are on sales pages, then I can't stand it, however I have bought plugins in the past where the developer has had communication issues, but I didn't mind it as much as the actual plugin itself was superb.
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  • Profile picture of the author braincandy7
    In sales copy yes. Something that important needs to be done correctly and if thats a worry for anyone it needs to be proof read before completion.

    In forums and other places you "speak" to others it's fine within reason. No need to be perfect all the time. More so of course if English is not the first language of the individual.
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  • Profile picture of the author Lucian Lada
    Originally Posted by officer_iron View Post

    If you're watching a video and the instructor says, "I seen this one other place," do you take less faith in what he/she is saying?
    No, if it's just one or two, and something not that obvious, no. Think of it this way: people are making more and more grammatical mistakes as days go by because of this "internet chat language".

    English is my 2nd language and I remember that on my first English test paper at school, I wrote "Hy" instead of "Hi" because that's how we were chatting on mIRC back then (you know, the "asl pls" period).

    Of course if they make serious errors and lots of them, than their credibility definitely plummets.

    It also depends on who the person claims he/she is. If it's a 50 years old man selling books about how to write then even the smallest mistake would be a turn off.

    If it's a 20 years old dude selling fashion ebooks than it might not be so bad, because just by trying to make a living selling something he's good at, he's miles ahead of his (and mine also) generation.


    Originally Posted by officer_iron View Post

    I don't automatically discount a person or product because of this, but I definitely do take them into consideration.
    Me too, but as said above, depends on who sells (or pretends) to sell the product.

    I've not read the whole thread, but I hope nobody mentioned this before :p
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  • Profile picture of the author bobcarlsjr
    it affects me quite a bit because i cannot stand bad grammar..

    but on the other hand.. it depends. if i am looking for a copywriter, etc then i expect nothing less than perfect grammar.

    if it pertains to seo/backlinking, etc, then grammar wouldn't really affect the performance of the supplier, right?
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  • Profile picture of the author ShuffleBot
    It's very important, absolutely. It's indicative of their overall intelligence.
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    • Profile picture of the author packerfan
      I didn't bother reading the thread but here's the truth. Grammar matters very little unless you are talking about non-natives writing. Think about how we talk compared to who we write.

      I guarantee you our speech is much less correct according to some definition of what is proper grammar. But we connect so much better with real conversation.

      Copywriters (the pros writing real sales letters) have been saying the same this for literally 100 years. Write using small words, in short sentences, in the style that connects with your prospect. It's really that simple.

      So if your market is selling to high school girls, then fill the sales page up with their slang, regardless of it's grammatically correct.

      There is no excuse for spelling errors though. I could probably forgive one or two, but if you can't take 30 seconds and run your sales letter through ms word's built in spell checker, then why would have any faith in your product.

      Take some time to read the best converting advertisements of all time. There are filled with fragments, and other things our high school English teacher's were against the rules.

      But you know what... it connects with people and at the end of the day that's all that matters.
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      • Profile picture of the author ShuffleBot
        Originally Posted by packerfan View Post

        I didn't bother reading the thread but here's the truth. Grammar matters very little unless you are talking about non-natives writing. Think about how we talk compared to who we write.

        I guarantee you our speech is much less correct according to some definition of what is proper grammar. But we connect so much better with real conversation.

        Copywriters (the pros writing real sales letters) have been saying the same this for literally 100 years. Write using small words, in short sentences, in the style that connects with your prospect. It's really that simple.

        So if your market is selling to high school girls, then fill the sales page up with their slang, regardless of it's grammatically correct.

        There is no excuse for spelling errors though. I could probably forgive one or two, but if you can't take 30 seconds and run your sales letter through ms word's built in spell checker, then why would have any faith in your product.

        Take some time to read the best converting advertisements of all time. There are filled with fragments, and other things our high school English teacher's were against the rules.

        But you know what... it connects with people and at the end of the day that's all that matters.

        you're right that connecting to people is ultimately more important but you can't deny that someone who doesn't know the difference between your and you're doesn't make you wonder about them?
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        • Profile picture of the author packerfan
          Originally Posted by ShuffleBot View Post

          you're right that connecting to people is ultimately more important but you can't deny that someone who doesn't know the difference between your and you're doesn't make you wonder about them?
          My point is if the reader is engaged they won't even notice. I have 1 grammar pet peeve... not now when to use then and when to use than. Nothing drives me crazy faster.

          But I was reading a post on SEO the other day on a blog, I can't remember which one... anyway, it was an awesome post, and the writer goofed up the then/than thing 3 times. I didn't care though. But only because the article was so good.

          That's all I'm trying to say.
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        • Profile picture of the author jardi
          Banned
          i think that people that speaks more than 2 laanguages can make mistakes sometimes, but people take it personally! it also depends on what youre selling, imagine this topic: articl righting for $5 <--- imagine that will affect a lot in my opinion!!
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        • Well now I gots to say that it don't bother me too much. See, I understand that most folks ain't as edumucated as ole Thad so I jest don't pay no mind to it!

          Really, I be guessin that it would all be dependin on what the context of the writin was! If it was some business correspondence, I would probably be ignorin it unless it could live up to the standards I have set myself!

          If it was somethin else, I probably just wouldn't be carin. There is just too much shine to be drinkin to worry bout other people's writin!

          Just my edumucated opinion though!
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      • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
        Originally Posted by MartinWinWeb View Post

        Isn't it all about the message ?

        Aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaer in waht oredr the ltters in a wrod are; the olny iprmoetnt fatcor is taht the frist and lsat ltteres be at the rghit pclae. The rset can be a total mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed? ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Petrty amzanig, huh?
        Petrty amzanig, indeed. Also only five short sentences.

        Imagine having to wade through pages of that stuff...

        Spelling and grammar mistakes bother me when they interfere with my ability to get the message.

        Bottom line, if the message seems like more work than the promised value, I won't make the effort.
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        • Profile picture of the author myob
          Polished grammar and perfect spelling seem contrived and make me highly suspicious, particularly when syntax follows elements of style too closely with known practices of neuro-linguistic manipulation.
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          • Profile picture of the author packerfan
            Originally Posted by myob View Post

            Polished grammar and perfect spelling seem contrived and make me highly suspicious, particularly when syntax follows elements of style too closely with known practices of neuro-linguistic manipulation.
            This deserves a high-5, so slap!
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            • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
              Joshua,
              With all due respect Paul, I disagree. I think they're referring to writing errors as it pertains to sales letters.

              And in my humble opinion, you hardly need to be a proficient writer yourself in order to recognize and care about the spelling/grammar mistakes in other people's writing.
              You're disagreeing with something I never said.

              I did not say what other people should or should not consider important. I suggested that bashing people for lacking skills you yourself lack may not be the best approach.

              Do you think it's wise for someone to claim that a person with less than perfect grammar is unprofessional and their products to be avoided, while leaving a trail of busted syntax, shoddy grammar and "casual" spelling throughout their own complaints?

              Anyone who wishes to believe that anything short of perfection is a sign of stupidity, carelessness, or some ill-defined standard of "unprofessionalism" is welcome to their belief. That's none of my business. However, if they choose to insult others based on such standards while failing to hold themselves to same, I feel quite at ease with pointing out the pomposity and illogic of the allegations.

              "That bothers me" is an inarguable statement. It's a personal preference.

              Claiming that lack of skill in one area is evidence of a similar lack of skill in another, unrelated, area is just ridiculous. And more than a little self-important.

              And, given the horribly ineffective methods often used to teach spelling, suggesting that someone is stupid based on no other evidence than some misspelled words is outright abusive.


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              • Profile picture of the author Joshua Rigley
                Banned
                Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

                Joshua,You're disagreeing with something I never said.

                I did not say what other people should or should not consider important. I suggested that bashing people for lacking skills you yourself lack may not be the best approach.
                Em...I never said that you said that people should or should not consider certain factors important. That wasn't what I was trying to say, at least.

                Do you think it's wise for someone to claim that a person with less than perfect grammar is unprofessional and their products to be avoided, while leaving a trail of busted syntax, shoddy grammar and "casual" spelling throughout their own complaints?
                I don't recall seeing too many people stating that one or two errors would be a cause for avoiding someone's products, but okay.

                Honestly, I don't see anything wrong with it. This is a forum, after all. If they are not selling any products of their own, or if their sales letters completely lack the grammar and spelling mistakes found in their general forum posts, I don't see any conflict in their arguments. I certainly don't see why it should render their arguments to be invalid, at any rate. Most people seem to agree that excessive errors is a cause for concern, and honestly I don't see what it matters that the presentation of these complaints have "less than perfect" spelling and grammar themselves.

                A couple of posters are obviously being lazy. But some are making an honest effort. Like me. I dislike grammar and spelling mistakes, yet my own posts often contain mistakes of their own. Should I keep my mouth shut then, since I am incapable of producing content that is 100% error free?

                It seems to me that you're holding these people to an unreasonable standard. They are not trying to sell anything in their posts, they're just stating an opinion.

                Anyone who wishes to believe that anything short of perfection is a sign of stupidity, carelessness, or some ill-defined standard of "unprofessionalism" is welcome to their belief. That's none of my business. However, if they choose to insult others based on such standards while failing to hold themselves to same, I feel quite at ease with pointing out the pomposity and illogic of the allegations.
                I agree. One should not be insulting towards others when pointing out faults, but stating that it is "unprofessional" for a person to not have a high level of standards for the quality of their English is hardly what I'd call an insult. More of a opinion.

                If someone was selling an English dictionary, and they had one or two errors in their copy, suppose someone pointed out those errors, and stated that it was unprofessional? Yet, in their review, they have one or two errors of their own. It's not that they were being lazy, they just made an honest mistake. And, unlike the seller, they did not have the option of getting a proofreader to go over their content (you can hardly expect someone to even proofread a product review, can you?).

                There are different levels of acceptable standards, in my opinion, in different mediums. Since a sales letter is meant to persuade people, we tend to hold a higher level of standard for them. We expect people to put plenty of time and effort into them. Not so with forum posts criticizing them.

                So why are you expecting the critics in this medium to adhere to the same standards of an entirely different medium? Doing so would require people to spend hours on their posts, and maybe even going as far to hire a proofreader. That's just plain silly.

                Claiming that lack of skill in one area is evidence of a similar lack of skill in another, unrelated, area is just ridiculous. And more than a little self-important.
                I disagree. I don't think that's what people are saying. If a sales letter has plenty of grammatical errors that could have easily been fixed if the seller had simply ran their copy through a spell checker, then that is a fair indication that they could have been equally lazy with the creation of their product. And this doesn't just pertain to grammar errors within the product itself (which in and of itself can detract from the consumer's experience), but also the research (or lack thereof) put into the product too.

                Effort matters. If a lack of it is found in a highly important piece of content (the sales letter), does that mean the seller doesn't even care about the product?

                One or two errors is understandable. I find errors in your own ebooks and sales copy, Paul. That's not because you're incompetent or didn't try, it just happens. I understand that.

                And most of the people who posted in this thread feel the same way. They're not talking about one or two errors, but lots of obvious errors.

                And, given the horribly ineffective methods often used to teach spelling, suggesting that someone is stupid based on no other evidence than some misspelled words is outright abusive.


                Paul
                I agree.
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                • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
                  Joshua,
                  It seems to me that you're holding these people to an unreasonable standard.
                  I am holding some of them to the standard they themselves claim to apply to others.

                  If they're not making allegations about the competency or intelligence of someone based on that person's writing, while leaving noticeable errors in their own, I am not even talking about them.

                  For example, I strongly disagree with Ken Caudill's conclusion earlier in this thread, but his grammar and spelling are consistently of high enough caliber that it's his stone to throw. He holds himself to the same standard he applies to others.

                  My objections aren't directed toward him. Or toward the folks who say things like "I find it distracting," or "I won't buy if I see them." Just the folks who make claims about the writer based on those errors. They're particularly silly when the content is about something for which talent in writing is irrelevant. Graphic design, for example. Or most techniques for SEO. Or auto repair.

                  How does one look at a person's writing and decide anything about their skill at any of those topics?
                  I find errors in your own ebooks and sales copy, Paul. That's not because you're incompetent or didn't try, it just happens. I understand that.
                  And I believe I have thanked you for pointing them out to me, and fixed them. I appreciate that sort of correction.

                  However, since I'm not saying errors are a sign of incompetence, my mistakes aren't in the category of hypocrisy. Just occasional sloppy typing. And I don't really care what people conclude about me based on those errors. Someone who would dismiss anyone's experience over a few typos isn't the kind of customer I want to deal with anyway.

                  I've said that often enough that it's become somewhat repetitive.

                  That doesn't mean I don't consider the effort to reduce errors to be important. Just that it should be secondary to communicating a useful message in an easily understandable form.
                  Effort matters. If a lack of it is found in a highly important piece of content (the sales letter), does that mean the seller doesn't even care about the product?
                  Nope. That is a conclusion based on insufficient evidence.


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      • Profile picture of the author Joseph G Spiteri
        It do not effect my buying decision. Because i have met many peaple in my life and a lot of them i still know. A two of them are not that great when it come's to spelling and grammar but they are two of the most intelligent people i know OH no spelling error above.
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      • Profile picture of the author bobcath
        Opinions such as 'yes it matters', 'no it doesn't', 'its condescending', 'it's funny', in reply to this question are fine to have I guess, but the OP wasn't, as some have inferred, being condescending or picking fault with anyone who writes bad grammar.

        He asked a question..."do you automatically think less of them"?

        The answer to this is based in attribution theory.

        This basically states that we form opinions of others based on the information in front of us. We subconsciously assign characteristics such as a person's ability in other areas based on what we see.

        So whether or not you think that bad grammar makes a difference to your perception and subsequent interpretation of what you see, it does!

        It may be that you choose to ignore your 'internal voice' and weigh up the fact that the product may be good either way, however there is no doubt that all other things being equal, we will give preference to the grammatically correct pitch.

        If you see two pitches promoting the same product and the first reads: -

        "Buy this product from me, you can depend on me for grate customer servis and a hi quality products".

        The second reads:-

        "Buy this product from me; you can depend on me for great customer service and a high quality product".

        Which would you buy from, be honest!

        Happy noo year to all!
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        • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
          Originally Posted by bobcath View Post

          The answer to this is based in attribution theory.

          This basically states that we form opinions of others based on the information in front of us. We subconsciously assign characteristics such as a person’s ability in other areas based on what we see.

          So whether or not you think that bad grammar makes a difference to your perception and subsequent interpretation of what you see, it does!
          Thank you! That is what I'm trying to say. I had no idea there was a term for it.

          As I mentioned in an earlier post, it's the same thing with testimonials on a sales page, or post counts here on the forum. We may pretend that those things don't influence us, but they do.

          All the best,
          Michael

          p.s. My phrase for 2011 was 'confirmation bias', and it looks like my phrase for 2012 will be 'attribution theory'. Time to do some reading!
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          • Profile picture of the author bobcath
            Originally Posted by Michael Oksa View Post

            p.s. My phrase for 2011 was 'confirmation bias', and it looks like my phrase for 2012 will be 'attribution theory'. Time to do some reading!
            Michael I can cornfirm that I have always been bias to agreeing with your opinions, and any attributions I've made as a result are no doubt well founded! Good luck with your 2012 phrase!
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      • Profile picture of the author hardraysnight
        i include usa spelling as bad grammar but feel no need to use capitals as normally would be required
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      • Profile picture of the author Danny McConnell
        Do those mistakes bother me? A bit. Usually it is just a twinge. I am sadly aware of the number of errors that slip through even when I go over my writing several times.

        What blows me away though is how some marketers can have copy so impossible to read that even several attempts to suss out a meaning fail. I have seen sales pages that have left thousands of dollars on the table, all for want of a quick proofread.
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      • Profile picture of the author Keepinitreal
        obviously... screams unprofessional and a bit untrustworthy. You can only hope the reader's grammar is worse off than the writer's lol
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      • Profile picture of the author bacolod
        It depends on the degree of error. There are simple and basic grammar and spelling errors which I don't mind at all. But major mistakes will definitely affect the credibility.

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      • Profile picture of the author unoentremil
        Bad grammar => Bad Professional => No sales

        Yes, It's very important. I came from Spain and I must confess that I'm worried about how the most basic spelling skills have been dropping over the last years. I get petrified almost every day, really. I haven't notice it to to such extent in English (in general).

        Best Wishes
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      • Profile picture of the author bt
        One or 2 grammar mistakes Is ok, but more than that and I lose trust In the author.
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  • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
    Oh, please, stop!

    You guys are cracking me up. I vote this thread "Most Unintentionally Funny Thread of 2012, So Far".

    Nearly all of the people who say poor grammar would prevent them from buying happen to have mistakes in their posts.

    Also, while a forum post doesn't need to be up to the same standard as a sales page or article, if you claim to be a writer or proofreader (notice it's one word, not two), then every forum post you make is a reflection on your skill.

    Do I think spelling and grammar matter? Yes, in the same way that testimonials and post counts matter. We may think they don't matter, but they have an influence on all of us at some level.

    For the record, there are only two times I point out grammar and spelling errors:

    1. When I am paid to do so.

    2. When somebody else goes off on how they don't like bad grammar, and then proceeds to make mistakes in their comments. THAT'S why this thread is so funny.

    Anyway, thanks for the laugh! It looks like 2012 is going to be business as usual.

    All the best,
    Michael
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    • Profile picture of the author Joshua Rigley
      Banned
      Originally Posted by Michael Oksa View Post

      proofreader (notice it's one word, not two)
      I always make mistakes like that. And honestly, without a software spellchecker, I'd be doomed (yep, I cheat).

      It's interesting how we can easily notice mistakes in other people's writing, yet be oblivious to our own mistakes.
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  • Profile picture of the author rooze
    It depends on the source and the type of mistakes. I have little tolerance for spelling errors, since it's so simple to run everything through a spell checker.
    Grammatical errors is another thing, init?
    We live in a multicultural society where for many, English is a second or even third language. Grammatical artistry indicates a certain level of education but certainly not intelligence. How can you be critical if a person is not communicating in their primary language? Can you speak and write Russian fluently?
    There are other instances of poor grammar where I know the writer is not English, yet it still annoys the heck out of me. You know for a fact that certain businesses have the money to spend on having their technical copy professionally re-written for English speaking customers, yet they continue to churn out information written in a very slap-bang manner.
    All in all there are more important things to worry about.
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  • Profile picture of the author JWImarketing
    gramer aint no big big thang yall. ecspressd truly from me

    Just kidding, we all make mistakes but there is a line. Do not cross it

    Jim
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  • Profile picture of the author tropvik
    Originally Posted by officer_iron View Post

    I know everyone gets sick of people complaining about and correcting grammatical errors, but how do YOU feel about them?

    Here's what I'm talking about:

    When you are reading someone's sales copy and they have grammatical or spelling errors, do you automatically think less of them and/or their product?

    What about when they have such errors in their guides or videos?

    If you're watching a video and the instructor says, "I seen this one other place," do you take less faith in what he/she is saying?

    I don't automatically discount a person or product because of this, but I definitely do take them into consideration.

    I'm just curious as to how others feel about this.
    I think one can notice when there's some careless mistakes that are normal.

    But nowadays, with some many tools as far as grammar check (i love Best Grammar Checker and Proofreading Software by Grammarly), + the ability to hire copywriters for grammar check purposes, IMO makes mistakes INEXCUSABLE.

    If its your 1st product fine, but you should include grammar/check and copywriting into your "IM assembly line".

    Money is scarce as it is, and we owe it to our costumers to give them a polished product, and we should also polish sales letters/funnels in order for them not to feel like they are wasting their time.

    My 10 cents
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  • Profile picture of the author Karen Connell
    I love how everyone is writing their posts like a Unversity thesis.

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  • Profile picture of the author julianna
    I definitely, am bothered by grammatical errors. Sure no one is perfect but it makes me think that the author didn't care enough to proof read & at the very least run a spell-check. I see "to" being used quite a bit instead of "too"
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  • Profile picture of the author HypeText
    Grammar and Articulation are key to projecting a professional image.

    If a person can write or speak well then they are generally regarded as being more professional, intelligent, and educated.

    Conversely, If I had posted "I ain't got no problem with it", I would have been regarded as ignorant and uneducated.

    I think my biggest pet peeve is when people misspell "Intelligent", especially when they are trying to relay how "Intelligent" they are! lol
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    • Profile picture of the author nik0
      Banned
      I don't think we should jugde people on there grammar, especially at online forums that attracts people from all over the world. Chosing a service based on that would be hugely flawed as it says nothing about there skills. There are tons of millionaires who didn't even finish there high school. The fact that there are still people who get annoyed by it shows that it would be smart to outsource a sales letter. Let's take the representive of a piece of software called ZennoPoster, I believe he/she is russian, and writes pretty terrible English, however I've never seen anyone complain about it cause there product rocks, so I guess it doesn't matter really as long as you offer true value to your customers.
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      • Profile picture of the author benlydenver
        Originally Posted by nik0 View Post

        I don't think we should jugde people on there grammar, especially at online forums that attracts people from all over the world. Chosing a service based on that would be hugely flawed as it says nothing about there skills. There are tons of millionaires who didn't even finish there high school. The fact that there are still people who get annoyed by it shows that it would be smart to outsource a sales letter. Let's take the representive of a piece of software called ZennoPoster, I believe he/she is russian, and writes pretty terrible English, however I've never seen anyone complain about it cause there product rocks, so I guess it doesn't matter really as long as you offer true value to your customers.

        yeah, we are talking about Article SEO "grammar" writing.
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      • Profile picture of the author ERPLeadsWriter
        Originally Posted by nik0 View Post

        I don't think we should jugde people on there grammar, especially at online forums that attracts people from all over the world. Chosing a service based on that would be hugely flawed as it says nothing about there skills. There are tons of millionaires who didn't even finish there high school. The fact that there are still people who get annoyed by it shows that it would be smart to outsource a sales letter. Let's take the representive of a piece of software called ZennoPoster, I believe he/she is russian, and writes pretty terrible English, however I've never seen anyone complain about it cause there product rocks, so I guess it doesn't matter really as long as you offer true value to your customers.
        Yeah well I buy Japanese video games, read translated Japanese comics, and use electronic gaming devices by a certain Japanese company a lot of people know and love.

        The creators of those products may not speak English themselves but even they know the importance of being clearly understood. I can't say I can see myself enjoying those same products if they didn't find a way to translate their instruction manuals or tailor a different website for their non-Japanese fans.
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  • Profile picture of the author DoubleOhDave
    Bad grammar really bugs me!! I think it just shows a lack of attention to detail...
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  • Profile picture of the author adammaxum
    It depends on the situation.

    For any sales copy, website text, copywriting, product reviews, it makes a huge difference. I won't buy anything if the grammar is terribly off. I can always forgive a vowel here or there, but when words are completely wrong, it's a deal breaker.

    Now when it comes to posts on a forum, or text messages, I could care less. People who feel the need to correct someone on a forum post that has nothing to do with writing is stoopid.
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    • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
      Originally Posted by adammaxum View Post

      It depends on the situation.

      For any sales copy, website text, copywriting, product reviews, it makes a huge difference. I won't buy anything if the grammar is terribly off. I can always forgive a vowel here or there, but when words are completely wrong, it's a deal breaker.

      Now when it comes to posts on a forum, or text messages, I could care less. People who feel the need to correct someone on a forum post that has nothing to do with writing is stoopid.
      I agree with the gist of what you're saying, but there is an exception: if you offer writing services, then every single post you make has an impact on how people perceive your writing ability.

      I'm not saying that people should correct you in the forum, but rather to remember that every post is, in effect, an ad if you are a writer or proofreader.

      Other than that, I couldn't care less about other people's posts.



      All the best,
      Michael
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  • Profile picture of the author Amy Harrop
    As a former high school English teacher, I think grammar is important when writing is used to communicate on a business or a professional level.

    When writing for a more casual audience, I don't think perfect grammar is always essential.

    I'm not part of the grammar police, and I'm sure I make errors from time to time, but I do think consistent errors are often a reflection of a person's writing ability. Poor grammar can often be distracting and detract from the overall message.
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    • Profile picture of the author HeySal
      Originally Posted by Amy Harrop View Post

      As a former high school English teacher, I think grammar is important when writing is used to communicate on a business or a professional level.

      When writing for a more casual audience, I don't think perfect grammar is always essential.

      I'm not part of the grammar police, and I'm sure I make errors from time to time, but I do think consistent errors are often a reflection of a person's writing ability. Poor grammar can often be distracting and detract from the overall message.
      Okay - right there. You nailed it. Our eye will continue over text and we will absorb it pretty matter of factly until we see something that sets off an alert as being unusual. I'm not talking different and innovative, which can excite good emotions - I'm talking about "strange, not right, not normal" which triggers apprehension and takes a moment of thought to overcome the negative flag. We start to think more about what is being said and becoming actively aware of discrepancies in logic. The more often the eye is stopped, the more those alerts compound, the more aware the customer becomes and the more consciously they start registering everything said. The sway of emotion is lost. The automatic acceptance is lost. You can't stop a person's eye too often before you have them just rejecting everything because of the flags that keep going off in their heads. That is how credibility loss works with mistakes. You raise enough flags that the emotional trigger turns negative no matter what else is going on in the material. It just becomes subconsciously too unusual to have any trust level attached.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rod Cortez
    I'll admit that poor grammar and spelling does annoy me, but having admitted that, it very seldom keeps me from purchasing. It all depends on the context if it affects their credibility. If my business (or I) need something, I'm still going to buy it. However, if I go to someone who is selling writing services and their sales page has errors in it, well, that's going to have impact. If I'm buying a book how to grow my own Goji berries? Not so much.

    In fact, one of my best converting sales letters has a few spelling errors in it and I left them on there because after testing a lot of transactions some of the feedback I got from my customers was that they actually liked the spelling mistakes because they knew a person wrote it and not some software.

    When I tested it against the control sales page that had no spelling mistakes, the one with the few spelling mistakes actually converted better (yes, everything else was equal). So I left the better converting sales page up and yes, those spelling mistakes are still on there.

    There is a universal truth that I've learned in over 11 years of being online:

    1). If you don't test something with enough transactions to be statistically significant, then any opinions you have about your own marketing is speculation.

    I still hire people to proof read my e-books and reports before they go live, even my sales copy, but we don't always catch them all.

    RoD
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  • Profile picture of the author richfit
    I think when posting content to your site you should make sure grammar is proper.
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  • Profile picture of the author Scott Lambency
    The thing about grammar and punctutation is that there is a place for it. You want a professional product, then your grammar and punctuation should be correct.

    I spend a lot of time checking Dictionary.com to make sure my spelling is correct. It's simple, quick, and it helps you look like a credible source of information. A lot of programs also have spell checkers now, so there really isn't a good excuse for spelling errors.

    And punctuation affects us all; at least on a subconsious level. This is why there are some killer sales letters with punctuation marks that would drive an English teacher crazy.

    A period at the end of a sentence signals a complete thought. However, if you want your reader to keep reading

    A fragment might better accomplish this.
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    • Profile picture of the author Shaun OReilly
      As we're all human, sometimes we make mistakes.

      I can tolerate some mistakes from anyone.

      However, too many mistakes and I'll label you (rightly
      or wrongly) as careless, sloppy and apply the same
      labels to whatever you're selling.

      If you care about your prospects and customers then
      you'll spend some time minimizing simple mistakes so
      your content is easier for them to consume.

      (Some mistakes will occasionally slip through the net).

      If you don't care enough to eliminate most of your avoidable
      spelling and grammar mistakes, then you don't deserve my
      time and money. Period.

      Dedicated to mutual success,

      Shaun
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  • Profile picture of the author Thatgirl
    Definitely affects credibility in my eyes. Minor mistakes are OKAY. However, if it starts to become unbearable I am forever turned off.
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  • Profile picture of the author CDarklock
    Originally Posted by officer_iron View Post

    When you are reading someone's sales copy and they have grammatical or spelling errors, do you automatically think less of them and/or their product?
    It depends on the presentation and positioning.

    I know a lot of smart people who suck at grammar and spelling. So if you're selling me something you made in your basement at an "I made this in my basement" price, like most WSOs, I'm totally cool with this.

    Stick a $97 or higher price tag on it, and I'm going to think you should probably have hired a proofreader. That's about the level where I start wanting to see higher production values.
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  • Profile picture of the author write27
    Yes, to me it does. For example, there was a great WSO from Craig Mako. Not a single spelling or grammatical mistake. Very professional looking. That enhanced the credibility in my eye.

    That doesn't mean that spelling and grammar is the most important aspect- just that it does enhance the writer's creds.

    Of course, I also have to understand not everyone is a native English speaker and cut them some slack.

    But for native English speakers, there really is no excuse.
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      Martin,
      Whether the majority or the minority of folks act on their dislike of a poorly written sales page is immaterial. What should matter to us as marketers is that some people will use it as an excuse to close the page.
      And very few people are offended by proper grammar and spelling.

      What I find amusing about these discussions is the number of errors in posts by people who insist that mistakes are signs of stupidity or "unprofessionalism." As Michael noted, this thread is riddled with them. Including posts from writers and editors.

      We all have our preferences, but we ought to ask before we start bashing people over such things: Is this my stone to throw?


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      • Profile picture of the author CyberSorcerer
        Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

        What I find amusing about these discussions is the number of errors in posts by people who insist that mistakes are signs of stupidity or "unprofessionalism." As Michael noted, this thread is riddled with them. Including posts from writers and editors.

        Paul

        Now I'm not the best writer myself but I have to agree with Paul. I don't mind taking sarcasm or criticism from people about my writing, spelling, grammer, etc. But if you're going to take it upon yourself to correct someone in a certain area, it is my belief that you should be perfect in that area.

        Especially if you want me to take your advice because you're positioning yourself as an expert in the field. I mean after all you find it necessary to go out of your way to correct someone.
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  • Profile picture of the author PaulyC
    Absolutely! If I'm trusting somebody to improve my life/business with their knowledge, but they can't even take the care to use proper spelling or grammar (or pay someone to proofread it), then I'm not going to take the time to give them my hard earned money.
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  • Profile picture of the author ezmystic
    I think all spelling and most grammer, unless it is really complex grammer that you might not know is correct or not needs to be correct or how can I trust them to have good content if they haven't even used a spell check or proof reader.
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      I think all spelling and most grammer, unless it is really complex grammer that you might not know is correct or not needs to be correct or how can I trust them to have good content if they haven't even used a spell check or proof reader.
      Perfect example of someone who's lobbing stones that aren't his to throw.

      The single most common mistake among amateur wombats: Misspelling "grammar."

      The mangled syntax is just dessert topping. (Or is that a floor wax?)


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  • Profile picture of the author JimMichael
    off corze itt duz. bade grammur ande spalling iz note ay gud waye two mayke ay furst impreshun withe potentul cutumurz.

    Iye mene thiz gowt yor attenshun bute ay amm ownly doowing itt two mayke ay poynt!!

    Hope that helps
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  • Profile picture of the author Ben Gordon
    My thoughts are the same as many, grammar does affect credibility because it presents the quality of the product that the seller is offering. Those who have bad grammar should speak with a professional and get their text translated from a professional. Doing this will increase credibility and trust with the vendor. In my eyes, if a vendor has a poorly written sales letter in terms of grammar, I will likely not purchase their product.
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  • Profile picture of the author rooze
    Since we're getting all philosophical and waxing lyrical over dots and dashes, something rather odd just occurred to me. I don't know if it's valid or not, so I'm going to reflect on it over a beer -
    For us to be able to grade a person's use of grammar, either consciously or by attribution theory, we only have our own level of grammatical proficiency to use as a benchmark. In other words, my use of grammar (even when I'm writing something of importance for a client perhaps) is far from perfect, so I'm able to detect errors in others' writing only up to the point of my own level of proficiency. Beyond that, grammatical mistakes may still be present, but they pass undetected. So when I'm reading the written word, the acceptance level for grammatical proficiency is a standard equivalent to my own and beyond, but not below. Where I might (consciously or subconsciously) consider a text below par, a person with a lower capacity for grammar and articulation than myself might consider it perfectly acceptable.
    If this theory were true, the target demographic for our written work might determine the necessary quality and accuracy of our writing. I believe, generally speaking, that the IM community is far more tolerant of poor grammar in a sales pitch than say.....ornithologists. Before you start flapping your wings in defiance, I did say 'generally speaking'

    Or that could be a complete load of BS, which I'm leaning towards at the moment

    In fact, strike everything I've just said...
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  • Profile picture of the author Victoralexon
    If I was looking to buy a product, and there were spelling and grammar errors in the copy, then that would certainly make me think twice about buying the product.

    Other than that, I'm not really annoyed when other people make spelling mistakes, etc.
    I do try to hold myself to higher standards however, and I always try to make sure that my spelling and grammar is perfect, regardless of whether if I'm writing an article for a client or if I'm just chatting with a friend on Skype.

    This is a bit of a challenge for me however since English isn't my first language. So the great irony is that there are probably a few mistakes in this post.

    I will have to run it through a grammar check software before I post it so that you won't make fun of me.
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    • Profile picture of the author write27
      Originally Posted by vicalexan View Post

      If I was looking to buy a product, and there were spelling and grammar errors in the copy, then that would certainly make me think twice about buying the product.

      Other than that, I'm not really annoyed when other people make spelling mistakes, etc.
      I do try to hold myself to higher standards however, and I always try to make sure that my spelling and grammar is perfect, regardless of whether if I'm writing an article for a client or if I'm just chatting with a friend on Skype.

      This is a bit of a challenge for me however since English isn't my first language. So the great irony is that there are probably a few mistakes in this post.

      I will have to run it through a grammar check software before I post it so that you won't make fun of me.
      No, I don't think it's proper to ridicule anyone for their grammar mistakes, especially non-English speakers. That is why we all need a good editor to have a truly professional looking product.
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      • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
        rooze,
        I'm able to detect errors in others' writing only up to the point of my own level of proficiency.
        Really, really important point.

        A couple of examples from this thread...

        Ken Caudill said "Grammar, usage and spelling mistakes make the writer look like a moron." Some moderately competent wombats would argue that a comma is required after the word 'usage.' However, since the absence of that comma doesn't create a likelihood that the last two elements of the list will be mistaken as a single entity, it is optional, and Ken's construction is correct.

        I don't agree with his conclusion, but that's another matter entirely.

        Michelle, a professional writer, posted the following paragraph: "Poor spelling and grammar is more understandable in forums or social networks since people are posting on the fly and don't always see their own mistakes. Forums and social networks are less formal, more relaxed. Goodness knows, I make my share of spelling/grammar mistakes on forums and social networks!"

        A more experienced writer would cringe at the violation of style guidelines in her use of the phrase "forums and social networks" three times in such close proximity.

        Also, that first sentence should have started "Poor spelling and grammar ARE more understandable." Spelling and grammar are separate entities, and thus treated as a group, rather than a single item.

        Lots of misappropriated stones flying about today...


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        • Profile picture of the author Joshua Rigley
          Banned
          Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

          Lots of misappropriated stones flying about today...

          Paul
          With all due respect Paul, I disagree. I think they're referring to writing errors as it pertains to sales letters.

          And in my humble opinion, you hardly need to be a proficient writer yourself in order to recognize and care about the spelling/grammar mistakes in other people's writing.

          Sure, it's ironic. But like the person you quoted said, this is a forum, so you shouldn't (again, in my opinion) discount what a person is saying as being hypocritical simply because they're making mistakes of their own.

          It drives me nuts whenever I see a person type as though they have a broken shift key. Or misspell "you're" (by far the most common mistake I see on the Internet), or do a number of other things that I'd personally consider "being lazy".

          With that said, I know I constantly make mistakes of my own. So while it annoys me, I do try to refrain from criticizing them, unless I feel that doing so would actually be helpful.

          And now, something to lighten the mood: Adorable baby wolf howl. [VIDEO]
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        • Profile picture of the author Nightengale
          Well, there ya go! Color me guilty. :p

          A lot of good points have been made in this thread, in spite of the mistakes flying around.

          I'm not the grammar police and I did NOT claim to be a perfect writer/grammarian. (For my own articles/books/client copy, I DO invest in a proofreader to look at my work, which is good business practice.)

          However, I stand by what I said:

          1. I DON'T expect perfect spelling/grammar from most people. I DO take the product/person/context into account. As I stated, standards on forum and social networks are more flexible. (Hence, my all caps when normally, the words would be italicized.)

          2. By the same token, I don't think that anyone's grammar needs to be perfect by academic standards for most people. (Unless you're in a field that requires it. Even most business circumstances don't.) (And yes, I know that's grammatically mangled.) Spelling SHOULD be perfect, unless there's a specific reason to misspell a word. Again, typos happen and the occasional typo is understandable.

          3. The OP's question was "Does poor grammar/spelling affect credibility in your eyes?" My answer is yes and I stated why. I think basic good grammar and spelling is important, in spite of the relaxed standards of today's communication (especially online communication).

          Common spelling and grammar mistakes (like the misuse of words like "your" vs "you're", "their" vs "they're" etc.) is just sheer laziness. (Unless it's deliberately done for a specific reason.) And yes, it DOES affect that person's credibility in my eyes. The occasional typo is one thing. But typos are usually easy to distinguish from simple, poor grammar.

          As someone else pointed out though, our grammar skills and how much poor grammar bothers us from other people will depend upon 1) our own level of skill and 2) our personal tastes (how much such mistakes bother us).

          I'm not the grammar police. My entire post was geared to proper grammar/spelling in a business context. Others had good points also, but I stand by what I said: if common spelling/grammar mistakes lower your credibility in your customers' eyes, why wouldn't you do your best to make your work as error-free as possible?

          I have NO interest in your spelling/grammar outside of business.

          Michelle

          P.S. And yes, I know I have mistakes in this post!





          Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

          Michelle, a professional writer, posted the following paragraph: "Poor spelling and grammar is more understandable in forums or social networks since people are posting on the fly and don't always see their own mistakes. Forums and social networks are less formal, more relaxed. Goodness knows, I make my share of spelling/grammar mistakes on forums and social networks!"

          A more experienced writer would cringe at the violation of style guidelines in her use of the phrase "forums and social networks" three times in such close proximity.

          Also, that first sentence should have started "Poor spelling and grammar ARE more understandable." Spelling and grammar are separate entities, and thus treated as a group, rather than a single item.

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        • Profile picture of the author HeySal
          Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

          rooze,Really, really important point.

          A couple of examples from this thread...

          Ken Caudill said "Grammar, usage and spelling mistakes make the writer look like a moron." Some moderately competent wombats would argue that a comma is required after the word 'usage.' However, since the absence of that comma doesn't create a likelihood that the last two elements of the list will be mistaken as a single entity, it is optional, and Ken's construction is correct.

          Paul
          Well gee, Paul - you couldn't have slammed my pet peeve harder if you had been aiming for it. Technically, in a simple construction, yes, in some formats, the lack of the comma before the "and" in the series is correct. AP style is one that actually calls for the comma to be left out.

          It makes me grit my teeth. LMAO. "And" is supposed to join with equivalence. If you have one item set off from the other two joined by the conjunction, subconsciously that item loses some of its equivalence. If the second comma is placed before the "and", subconsciously all items in the series register subconsciously as having equal value in the statement.

          The only time you will ever see me drop that comma before the "and" if I am not being forced to write AP style (which I avoid like the plague whenever possible), is when I am purposely trying to set up an inequality within the series that the majority of readers won't register consciously. It's actually a quite popular covert tactic in propaganda construction - which I sometimes feel was the whole point of the AP style in the first place even though intellect tells me it was for spacing in newsprint columns.

          Ah crap. I really need to get out more.
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          • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
            Sal,
            Ah crap. I really need to get out more.
            [chuckle]

            That's one of Caliban's big issues, too, when it comes to grammar. Or at least it seemed to be when we discussed it. The way you and he prefer (with the "serial comma" before the 'and') is the most reliably understood. I picked that comment from Ken to highlight how some wombats will insist their way is the only right way, when there are exceptions that are considered equally proper.


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            • Profile picture of the author HeySal
              Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

              Sal,[chuckle]

              That's one of Caliban's big issues, too, when it comes to grammar. Or at least it seemed to be when we discussed it. The way you and he prefer (with the "serial comma" before the 'and') is the most reliably understood. I picked that comment from Ken to highlight how some wombats will insist their way is the only right way, when there are exceptions that are considered equally proper.


              Paul

              Well, if you want to have real fun with it -- most of our grammar rules are more descriptive than they are proscriptive anyway. It has to be somewhat proscriptive in an attempt to keep the evolution slow enough that it doesn't completely whack our ability to communicate, but descriptive will always win in the end over time - which is why I dreamed last night instead of drempt.

              In copy, the main concern is not stopping the eye. It doesn't matter a rat's patoot what way you write something as long as it doesn't make the eye stop. The easiest way to avoid that is to follow the rules of grammar.
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  • Profile picture of the author charto911
    if its a forum posting I dont care at all but if its a press release or supposed authoritative commentary on a subject like CNN.com or a blog that is ranked high up in the serps for a query I make than yes all credibility goes down the draino.
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  • Profile picture of the author hustlinsmoke
    My websites are always checked for grammar and spelling. Forum posts and blog post as well as fb hardly ever. Just like Paul Myers quoted we post on the fly. Does not both me here if one or two words are mispelled.
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    • Profile picture of the author wordwizard
      Originally Posted by stevedevane View Post

      It drives me crazy, but I've been a writer/editor for years. If I see 1-2 mistakes, it probably won't influence my buying decision, but much more than that I certainly take it into account.
      Originally Posted by Jeff Burritt View Post

      Bad grammar and punctuation may be nothing. Or, it may be a reflection of the author's commitment to quality and thoroughness. I can't help but think the latter. I may give an artist or genius some lenience for a sloppy presentation; but not a marketer.
      I agree with Steve and Jeff (and others who expressed similar sentiments.

      Now here's one note though: Some definitions consider casual language "bad grammar" - and I don't agree with that.

      Most effective sales letters require colloquial language - and that's just fine!

      So I'm not a stickler, but a number of BAD grammar mistakes and seriously misused words make can definitely affect the credibility of the writer/offer-maker.
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  • Profile picture of the author Amelle
    I usually forgive the odd grammar or spelling mistake. However, when a page is littered with them, I think it's plain carelessness, unless English is not the writer's language or has not had the privilege of education.
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  • Profile picture of the author jinmin
    For small mistakes (few mistakes for a 3-4 pages sales letter), I don't take it personally. I focus more on what the product can do..the demo must be able to illustrate the product clearly.
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  • Profile picture of the author MatthewNeer
    I personally believe it takes more of an effect in the written word, because me makes that person seem a little "stupider" if you will. It shows unprofessionalism.

    However, in audio or video, you can hear tone and accent. This means if someone has a southern accent for example, (sometimes associated with lower intellect, even though its a stereotype) will be understood and most likely accepted.

    Bottom line: Practice good grammar, it can never hurt to sound politically correct, but it can hurt to sound like less intelligent.

    Have fun, be spontaneous and say crazy sh!t, but do it with taste!
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  • Profile picture of the author Targeted Traffic
    its a sales copy...something that should have undergone thorough thought and review...for me its going to get a frown and a thumbs down...
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  • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
    If the mistakes are sufficient enough to slow down my reading and comprehension, then it matters. Otherwise, I'm pretty tolerant of grammar mistakes.

    Being able to communicate your ideas effectively is the most important factor in writing, in my opinion. I almost flunked English in high school. I know precious little about the "rules" of grammar, but I'm told I'm a good writer. If that's true, it's probably because I communicate my ideas effectively more so than me having wonderful grammar skills.

    So, if I slay one or two of your precious grammar rules you're going to have to overlook it . . . or look away. I'm too damn old to worry about it now.

    By the way, how do you like my ellipsis in the previous paragraph? Is it wrong that way...and not using spaces is the right way to use an ellipsis in the middle of a sentence? If so, I like it better my way. It seems like a longer pause to me, and that's what I'm after when I use it. Doing a few things "my way" doesn't mean I have no pride in my writing skills. It just means I do not feel compelled to follow convention in every instance.

    Here's some food for thought . . . don't let your quest for grammatical perfection keep you from making money. Perfection takes time. I can crank out two products that are well written for every one product that has perfect grammar. Guess which way I make more money?

    When I'm laying on my deathbed, I think I'll be more likely to say, "I wish I could have written one more book," rather than saying, "I wish I could have been more grammatically correct."

    Having said all that, write well, but be tolerant of others. It's usually a mistake to judge someone else by your own reality.
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  • Spelling and grammar mistakes can be considered by some people to be reflecting someone's inefficiency. Reading such sales pages is certainly going to take more of your time because to understand them your have to correct them first, and again, what if the seller's message is distorted? With such uncertainties many buyers will opt not to look at your sales pages which in turn reduces your sales.
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  • Profile picture of the author Aha moment
    grammar error? I think if an expert in IM sent me email with grammar error, it'll give me more feeling like it's a personal email .. I like that ...
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  • Profile picture of the author meaghandrina
    A bad example of bad grammar is "I went the store to get some fruit at the store." or "I like to eat fish because seafood is good and i like to eat it often and its never enough so I want to go to Red lobster
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    • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
      Originally Posted by meaghandrina View Post

      A bad example of bad grammar is "I went the store to get some fruit at the store." or "I like to eat fish because seafood is good and i like to eat it often and its never enough so I want to go to Red lobster
      What's wrong with that? I write like that all the time when I write like that.
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  • Profile picture of the author Karen Connell
    Where is Thaddaeus T. Hogg when you need him?

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  • Profile picture of the author athanne
    It does affect very much. Many people in Internet Marketing want to use their time well and so if spelling and grammatical errors appear on sales page it means they have to take in their extra time to correct and then try to understand the message. Such mistakes indicate inefficiency and can become the sellers undoing.
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  • Profile picture of the author Cool Hand Luke
    Wel I'm a spellig bee champiun so I knoo that gramar andd spellig iz importint
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    • Profile picture of the author benlydenver
      Originally Posted by Cool Hand Luke View Post

      Wel I'm a spellig bee champiun so I knoo that gramar andd spellig iz importint
      that's to obvious mate.
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  • Profile picture of the author bikramksingh
    Being too strict with grammar may kill your copy, but committing obvious mistake is indeed a downer. One need to keep it as grammatically correct as possible, but do not sacrifice style for grammar.
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  • Profile picture of the author TV Destroyer
    Some really interesting responses here. When I studied copywriting certain experts suggested dropping in a deliberate error. Personally, I dislike it as it shows a lack of attention to detail (and it stops the flow of the reader reading)

    In my mind grammatical mistakes display an unprofessional approach.
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  • Profile picture of the author chrislangley
    I think grammar certainly affects credibility, many people once they notice spelling and punctuation errors are automatically turned off everything the site is trying to sell
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    • Profile picture of the author mounds
      When it comes to internet writing, I consider proper grammar and punctuation to be the polish. I don't mind a few scuffs when the material is engaging.

      Remember that grammar and punctuation are used for clarity and not for making your writing more interesting. If your material is a snooze to begin with, no one is going to care about your perfect clarity.

      -Tim
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  • Profile picture of the author Robert Puddy
    When you have had personal experience of a sales letter converting at 11% then handing it over to a proof reader who corrects all the run ons, commas and grammar crap.

    It then converts at 0.05%

    You will soon throw the grammar rules in the bin where they belong
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  • Profile picture of the author funkynassau
    As someone who was a magazine editor for 17 years, spelling and grammar errors jump out at me, and if someone has some or lots of both and they are trying to sell me something, it does indeed turn me off from them and their product. I think if they can't be bothered to spell check their spiel and get help with grammar if they need it, then what kind of merchant are they? I tend to turn away from those who can't even get their advertising right.
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  • Profile picture of the author Dave Matthews
    A couple of mistakes is OK but more than that....... I start to think hhhhmmmmm....
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  • Profile picture of the author barickiza
    Of course grammar is important, otherwise you look as an amateur and not educated, and that makes a visitors go a way.
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  • Profile picture of the author herrador
    Yes, spelling and grammar matter ...

    It puts me off but it is not the be all end end all
    particularly when there are so many marketers who
    do not claim English as their native tongue.

    However what with spellcheckers most mistakes should be avoided.

    As far as speech on a video goes, there are so many
    forms of speaking these days that you have to be forgiving
    ...heck I might not have the best way of speaking but I still
    hope to get my message across.
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      Originally Posted by Robert Puddy View Post

      When you have had personal experience of a sales letter converting at 11% then handing it over to a proof reader who corrects all the run ons, commas and grammar crap.

      It then converts at 0.05%

      You will soon throw the grammar rules in the bin where they belong
      Just for kicks, some years ago, I took what was offered as one of the most successful sales letters ever and pasted it into MS Word. Then I clicked 'check grammar and spelling'...

      By the time I finished 'correcting' it, the language had changed so much that and gotten so watered down that I would not have bought the product despite the ostensibly perfect grammar and spelling.

      Fortunately, my ideas about 'fun' have expanded considerably.
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  • Profile picture of the author Raydal
    When a poet breaks the rules of grammar we say that he has
    "poetic license" to do so. When a (copy)writer does the same
    we say that she lacks professionalism?

    Or maybe I misunderstood the whole issue. Maybe we are not
    talking about "sales talk" just writing in general.

    -Ray Edwards
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    • Profile picture of the author HeySal
      Originally Posted by Raydal View Post

      When a poet breaks the rules of grammar we say that he has
      "poetic license" to do so. When a (copy)writer does the same
      we say that she lacks professionalism?

      Or maybe I misunderstood the whole issue. Maybe we are not
      talking about "sales talk" just writing in general.

      -Ray Edwards
      Sure the rules can be broken. It's not just poets that do so. Technically, a sentence is never supposed to start with "and" or "but. BUT, there are instances in which it actually emphasizes what is being said. Because it is done so much in casual speech, it doesn't register subconsciously as "abnormal" in the average person's head. The only person who will be stymied by it is an absolute grammar Nazi, and they aren't as bright as they like to think anyway.

      We end sentences with prepositions. That's a grammatical no-no, but some of the sentence structures you end up with are either exceedingly formal or just plain awkward if you follow that rule. If you are trying to sound earthy and one to one - following that rule can break your efforts. To partially quote a famous and brilliant man - that is a situation "up with which I will not put".

      Don't know if you've ever noticed, but I can get pretty unorthodox with my punctuation. It's an idiosyncratic style preference and it works for me - but it ain't hoyle, if you get my drift.

      If you know the rules, you can break them for style and actually be more effective. Some alterations can work for you and some will tank you. It's up to the writer to be educated enough to know which is which.

      Robert -
      When you have had personal experience of a sales letter converting at 11% then handing it over to a proof reader who corrects all the run ons, commas and grammar crap.

      It then converts at 0.05%
      If that was your experience, then your editor didn't understand that some corrections can change semantic impact. When you correct mistakes in sales material - or any persuasive writing - you have to read back over to make sure semantic impact has not been altered.
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  • Profile picture of the author TopKat22
    Since I have found poor grammar and misspellings on sites of the most successful multi-millionaires and billionaires, the famous news sites and even in famous newspapers---NO-- it does not immediately hurt the credibility.

    It I am really engaged emotionally in what is being presented, I miss it entirely.

    Of course, I do all I can to get it right but I have had myself and 10 other people proof read articles and ebooks and sales copy, only to go back some weeks later and find another error.

    The only people who have EVER pointed it out to me are paid proof readers or people in those type professions.

    The most successful business people I have known have NEVER mentioned it.

    It is important but I wouldn't sweat it, especially after you've had some success and have a good reputation.
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  • Profile picture of the author mgreener
    Absolutely. Lately you can even find grammar and spelling errors in newspapers and books. If a person can't be bothered to pay attention to their copy, what other details are they overlooking?
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  • Profile picture of the author Karen Connell
    Read this out loud and see how reliable your spell checker is...

    Eye halve a spelling chequer
    It came with my pea sea
    It plainly marques four my revue
    Miss steaks eye kin knot sea

    Eye strike a quay and type a word
    And weight four it to say
    Weather eye am wrong oar write
    Is shows me strait a weigh

    As soon as a mist ache is maid
    It nose bee fore two long
    And eye can put the error rite
    It’s rare lea ever wrong

    Eye have run this poem threw it
    Eye am shore yore pleased two no
    It’s letter perfect awl the weigh
    My chequer tolled me sew

    “Anon”

    Karen
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  • Profile picture of the author stpphilly
    Bad grammar and spelling absolutely affect a seller's credibility in my eyes. If they didn't take the time to spellcheck or proofread, what else didn't they take the time to do? When it comes to audio/video, my ears actually feel irritated when people don't use proper English. It's a huge turnoff to me.
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  • Profile picture of the author Tim Franklin
    Wow, some "serious replies to this question"

    Over all, I think it has to have some effect, on Native English Consumers, how much depends on how much "error" is in the copy, if it is just an accidental typo, it might just be a mistake, I can over look that, but if there are multiple errors, that effect what is being said,
    example,

    "You can be doing this in just a matter of time"

    instead of a more proper sentence structure.

    "In a short amount of time you can be successful"
    Personally it would not prevent me from making a purchase just because they do not have perfect English or they made a mistake, but if they are selling a product that requires the use of Good English skills, like an Article product, then yes, I have a problem buying from someone that does not have good English sales copy, because that to me is a representative opportunity for them to show me, what they can do in terms of skill, that is just a logical thing to do.

    So I think it depends on the product and what they are selling.

    No one is perfect, not even the best authors or writers, no one walks on water, around here either, LOL,
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  • Profile picture of the author damasgate
    lol so much!

    I lose credibility in my own eyes when I don't edit my emails and I see them later having horrible grammar!
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  • Profile picture of the author kencalhn
    if you can't even spell right, why the heck would I trust you to get the more important things right?

    bad grammar and typos will kill sales. we've all made them, especially in the heat of new product launches; but fortunately there's a lot of spell checking capability built into much of what we do. clear, easy to understand, correctly-spelled stuff counts.

    having said that, I just screwed up an email, using "firstname" type tag not properly formatted, so my list saw "firstname" instead of their name. sigh. we all screw up. well I'll just resend it, fixed, in a minute.

    what matters big picture is the 'story' your readers see; over time... what are you saying to them? a rare typo can be forgiven in the life of a handful of emails/sites... but regular/frequent typos will likely kill sales/credibility.
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  • Profile picture of the author Torreylee
    When I see grammatical errors in sale copy I cringe, especially when it's in MY sales copy! LOL... But seriously as long as it few and far between I don't discount the message.

    Being in this business, I realize that human error is unavoidable. If I see a bunch of grammar errors, then yes, I am turned off. That shows that person doesn't care much about their sales pitch, so why should I?
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  • Profile picture of the author BIG Mike
    Banned
    I didn't read the entire thread...just hopped to the end to add my comments as this topic has come up numerous times over the years.

    Except for published books and magazines, poor grammar or use of a language doesn't bother me at all, provided the message itself is communicated.

    You have to remember that we live in this global village where English seems to predominate on the web and yet it is not the native language of many well-educated, talented people.

    I don't think you can fairly judge someone because their writing or speaking isn't perfect. Even the grammar nazis out there make mistakes from time-to-time , which is why we have editors.

    In today's world, what matters most is effective communication
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      Ya know, I am absolutely fascinated by the people who preach about grammar while typing in all lower case, or who don't leave blank lines between paragraphs.

      The function of grammar is to provide a set of conventions that make things easy to read and understand. Line indents or blank lines between paragraphs make a huge difference in readability.

      And the whole lower-case thing?

      It wasn't clever when e e cummings did it. These days it's just rude and pretentious. You're allowed to be that kind of inconsiderate if you want, but don't kid yourself that it's anything but that.

      How is it rude? You're deliberately choosing to make your messages more difficult for others to read. A small rudeness, but the casual kind that I find particularly offensive.

      Pretentious? You're doing it for attention. It serves no other purpose but laziness.


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      • Profile picture of the author Nightengale
        Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

        And the whole lower-case thing?

        It wasn't clever when e e cummings did it. These days it's just rude and pretentious. You're allowed to be that kind of inconsiderate if you want, but don't kid yourself that it's anything but that.

        How is it rude? You're deliberately choosing to make your messages more difficult for others to read. A small rudeness, but the casual kind that I find particularly offensive.

        Pretentious? You're doing it for attention. It serves no other purpose but laziness.
        Amen! What he said.

        Michelle
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      • Profile picture of the author MikeTucker
        Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

        And the whole lower-case thing?

        It wasn't clever when e e cummings did it.

        Paul

        to be fair
        paul

        e e cummings wrote all over the
        page


        quite clever actually

        because his writing was not that good



        yet people still remember
        him
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        • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
          Mike,
          yet people still remember
          him
          True. People also remember the Hindenberg disaster and the wreck of the Titanic. That doesn't mean they're efforts worthy of imitation.


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  • Profile picture of the author Cool Hand Luke
    What chu all sed iz relly importint, that's whie I uze huked-on-phonix to maak sur my spellig and gramer iz gudder then evrywon els.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mary Wilhite
    Grammar is crucial. It shows the seriousness and thoroughness of the writer. Whatever the product someone is selling, one should aim to write error free.

    If just one person will stop buying your product because you missed a comma after the word 'however', why not make sure you have it.

    That said, some errors are serious while others may not. An error in the headline has more impact than one deep in the sales letter. A punctuation error in 4000 words is forgivable, but a grammatical error every 100 words is certainly a turnoff.

    Some errors change the meaning and intention of the writer.
    Consider this headline from a furniture store:
    ''Our Motto Is To Give Our Customers
    The LOWEST POSSIBLE Prices
    And Workmanship.''
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    • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
      Originally Posted by Mary Wilhite View Post

      Grammar is crucial. It shows the seriousness and thoroughness of the writer. Whatever the product someone is selling, one should aim to write error free.

      If just one person will stop buying your product because you missed a comma after the word 'however', why not make sure you have it.

      That said, some errors are serious while others may not. An error in the headline has more impact than one deep in the sales letter. A punctuation error in 4000 words is forgivable, but a grammatical error every 100 words is certainly a turnoff.

      Some errors change the meaning and intention of the writer.
      Consider this headline from a furniture store:
      ''Our Motto Is To Give Our Customers
      The LOWEST POSSIBLE Prices
      And Workmanship.''
      That reminds me of an episode of The Simpsons (as many things do).

      The family is in need of legal representation, so they go to Lionel Hutz. He asks for a retainer of $1000 which makes Marge(?) point out that his newspaper ad says:

      Works on Contingency
      No Money Down

      Upon seeing the ad, Lionel claims they messed up the ad and quickly uses a pen to correct the ad, which then reads:

      Works on Contingency?
      No! Money Down.

      That's about as fine of an illustration of the power of proper punctuation as I have ever seen.

      All the best,
      Michael
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  • Profile picture of the author Absolute Logo
    I think it makes a website lose credibility for sure. Especially when sentences don't make sense!
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  • Profile picture of the author Randall Magwood
    Grammar doesn't affect much. I've had my fair share of grammatical errors, yet the sales continued to come thru - cause the people buying it just wanted the information i was selling. But there's this guy name Jeff Paul (legendary offline marketer) who used to use curse words in his sales letters, and his customers enjoyed his originality. He's a millionaire by the way, but lately his name has become synonymous with "scam". Still an excellent marketer tho.
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  • Grammar is very important. I manually spell check everything I do before sending/uploading.
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  • Profile picture of the author NickSway
    If it's on a sales page then yes. It's like if I picked up a book and it had numerous grammatical errors... I'd put it down. It's their job to proof read and make it professional.
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  • Profile picture of the author Will Washington
    Banned
    I don't like sales pages that are gramatically incorrect. If they are making so much with their method, they should be able to afford an editor.
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      I don't like sales pages that are gramatically incorrect. If they are making so much with their method, they should be able to afford an editor.
      This post is so rife with unsupportable assumptions it's just silly. Let's look at the big one, though: What if the product isn't about making money?

      Example: Uncle Booger's Bumper-Dumper.


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  • Profile picture of the author Emily Meeks
    They're going There with Their friends. Grammar makes a difference.

    Improper grammar shows a distinct lack of care. If you have perfect grammar, you've got nothing to worry about - so why even put yourself up for that?
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    • Profile picture of the author NicheMayhem
      This thread reminds me of when my mother wrote her first novel. She still hired an editor even though she had tediously combed the entire eighty some thousand words numerous times prior to the hiring. About 5 days later the manuscript comes back edited. I helped her, we went over the notes and I tried to devise a way for her to begin implementing the corrections.

      I'm not sure how she had gotten in touch or what their first correspondence was but a couple of days later the editor sent an email explaining how she was going to be away for a few days. The email wasn't very long but was full of blatant errors and was essentially one big run-on sentence. Not only was this editor fired and most of the corrections painstakingly questioned but mom has since written three other novels and never went back.

      One email made all the difference and their was no consideration for it being a casual message. That email reflected poorly and for me personally, it changed my opinion of the editor entirely.

      Very important to come off as professional as humanly possible. Truthfully, as far as buying and selling online goes, spelling and grammar are essential aspects of the buying process. For me though, it is more about misspelled words then it is sentence structure. Even if it is just a letter out of place that still conveys to me the copy wasn't re-read enough times which makes me question the quality I can expect.

      Let's face it, with all the choices we have online and all the crap we have to wade through to find something worthy of buying...good spelling and grammar are definitely fundamental necessities for making as much money as you can if you have something to sell.
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  • Profile picture of the author ERPLeadsWriter
    For me, I can excuse the bad grammar if I can, at the very least, understand what I'm reading. Regardless of what I buy, bad grammar only turns me off if I can't extract even the most basic information from the content.

    However, that happens more often than not which is why I don't think you should neglect grammar entirely either. You should definitely work on it if you can.
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  • I am probably shooting myself in the foot here. I have a better tolerance for errors if the person does not speak English as their primary language. As long as their message is clear. Other than that, I expect the message to be clear and to the point. If the ad copy is full of typos and the speaker is talking like they would to their friends I do tend to question their commitment to quality and their commitment to my success with whatever they are teaching or selling. When someone is buying from a sales person offline they expect quality communication and professionalism. Why should it be any different online?
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  • Of course grammar affects credibility.

    If a product creator is too lazy/reckless/stupid to not care about the quality of his texts, why would I expect otherwise about the quality of his products?
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  • Profile picture of the author jeffsmith1
    Banned
    [DELETED]
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      Marianne,
      Because "hitch mounted" wasn't correctly hyphenated (hitch-mounted)
      Here's the point: Do you honestly believe people who need that product care about the guy's hyphenation? Or any of the plethora* of other sins of grammar on the page?

      No. No, they don't.

      Does the lack of grammatical purity mean Ol' Booger don't know his stuff?

      No. No, it doesn't.

      That site has been selling bumper dumpers since 1999, at least. In February of 2000 I used it as an example to prove Declan Dunn's thesis that, "If it's ugly as hell, it will sell."

      Tain't'nny purtier now'n it wuz thain. But they keeps own sailin'!

      Jess imajinate own wut they'uns could did if'n they hahred ol' Thad to writes 'em up some fantsy sailin' copy!


      Paul

      * ('Plethora?' Yuck. What's the "group" word for sins? Like a 'gaggle of geese' or a 'murder of crows?' If there's no word for it, I nominate 'pride.'

      A pride of sins. It just sounds right.)
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      • Profile picture of the author NicheMayhem
        Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

        Marianne,Here's the point: Do you honestly believe people who need that product care about the guy's hyphenation? Or any of the plethora* of other sins of grammar on the page?

        No. No, they don't.

        Does the lack of grammatical purity mean Ol' Booger don't know his stuff?

        No. No, it doesn't.

        That site has been selling bumper dumpers since 1999, at least. In February of 2000 I used it as an example to prove Declan Dunn's thesis that, "If it's ugly as hell, it will sell."

        Tain't'nny purtier now'n it wuz thain. But they keeps own sailin'!

        Jess imajinate own wut they'uns could did if'n they hahred ol' Thad to writes 'em up some fantsy sailin' copy!


        Paul

        * ('Plethora?' Yuck. What's the "group" word for sins? Like a 'gaggle of geese' or a 'murder of crows?' If there's no word for it, I nominate 'pride.'

        A pride of sins. It just sounds right.)
        You make a good point Paul and that is truly one of the ugliest sites I have ever seen.

        ...although...

        It is relevant to consider how important it would be for Ol' Goober to up his game and pay attention to his presentation if he had any kind of competition. Apparently though there aren't many other manufacturers of toilet seats bolted to a truck hitch....go figure.

        So, wouldn't you admit that in a saturated market things like grammar and spelling would likely play a factor in a buying decision?

        Also, in my opinion, if English is not your first language but you want to sell your product to English speaking customers, you should take extra steps to effectively convey your message. Otherwise, it's just as lazy as not taking the time to spell check sales copy.
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        • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
          So, wouldn't you admit that in a saturated market things like grammar and spelling would likely play a factor in a buying decision?
          For that kind of product? No.

          I know this guy's customers. I grew up with them. They do not give a rat's fuzzy backside about the finer points of grammar when they see something they want that fits a rabid interest.

          And isn't that who you want to be marketing to in the first place?


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  • Profile picture of the author cyberws
    To me, poor grammar and spelling indicates carelessness and disrespect for the customer. Lots of very smart and capable people don't write well, but it's just not that hard - or expensive - to have someone check spelling and grammar. It's just plain dumb to turn off customers this way.
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    • Profile picture of the author John Coutts
      While grammar and punctuation are certainly important to get right, they will never compensate for bad, pretentious writing, the kind you get from companies that haven't a clue what's going on, or so it seems.

      Some good phrase examples I have come across include:

      "organizational facilitation in incremental flexibility"
      "a blue-sky approach to total organizational paradigm shifts"
      "getting on-message about our four-dimensional organizational contingencies"
      "contemporary reimagining of remote asset time-phases"
      "time to revamp and reboot our systemised policy concepts"
      "our exploratory research points to synchronized strategic resources"
      "implementing compatible logistical options to complement a congruent time-phased approach"


      ???

      John.
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      • Profile picture of the author John Coutts
        I suppose I shouldn't do this, and everyone who tries it will definitely get it 100% correct (who is going to admit otherwise?), but here's a little grammar quiz:
        Quiz
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  • Profile picture of the author JasonParker
    Considering most people read at an 8th grade level, I think that's why it doesn't matter.

    Also I know it doesn't matter in my own testing.

    It doesn't alter conversions whatsoever.

    Unless you're selling to a crowd that prides themselves on being the smartest, like Volvo owners for example, then it'll probably matter.

    If you're selling something about grammar then you better have your grammar right.

    Otherwise what matters is this...

    That you get your message across as clearly as possible.

    Being simple and direct... That's all that matters.

    Rules in grammar can be shattered.

    Read the Elements of Style for a practical guide on writing with clarity.

    Communicating in the most clear and concise way possible is what matters.

    Not technicalities.
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      Originally Posted by John Coutts View Post

      While grammar and punctuation are certainly important to get right, they will never compensate for bad, pretentious writing, the kind you get from companies that haven't a clue what's going on, or so it seems.

      Some good phrase examples I have come across include:

      "organizational facilitation in incremental flexibility"
      "a blue-sky approach to total organizational paradigm shifts"
      "getting on-message about our four-dimensional organizational contingencies"
      "contemporary reimagining of remote asset time-phases"
      "time to revamp and reboot our systemised policy concepts"
      "our exploratory research points to synchronized strategic resources"
      "implementing compatible logistical options to complement a congruent time-phased approach"

      ???

      John.
      John, they all mean the same thing...

      "Our top managers went to another management seminar on the company dime."

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      • Profile picture of the author John Coutts
        Originally Posted by John Coutts View Post

        While grammar and punctuation are certainly important to get right, they will never compensate for bad, pretentious writing, the kind you get from companies that haven't a clue what's going on, or so it seems.

        Some good phrase examples I have come across include:

        "organizational facilitation in incremental flexibility"
        "a blue-sky approach to total organizational paradigm shifts"
        "getting on-message about our four-dimensional organizational contingencies"
        "contemporary reimagining of remote asset time-phases"
        "time to revamp and reboot our systemised policy concepts"
        "our exploratory research points to synchronized strategic resources"
        "implementing compatible logistical options to complement a congruent time-phased approach"

        ???

        John.
        Originally Posted by JohnMcCabe View Post

        John, they all mean the same thing...

        "Our top managers went to another management seminar on the company dime."

        Phew! Thanks for clearing that up. At least I won't have to implement a total organizational paradigm shift.

        Of course, it's not only companies that do this kind of thing. I came across a British government directive that said this:

        "High-quality learning environments are a necessary precondition for facilitation and enhancement of the ongoing learning process."

        Because of confusion, it was later changed to this:

        "Children need good schools if they are to learn properly."

        John.
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        • Profile picture of the author LBspeaks
          Originally Posted by John Coutts View Post

          Phew! Thanks for clearing that up. At least I won't have to implement a total organizational paradigm shift.

          Of course, it's not only companies that do this kind of thing. I came across a British government directive that said this:

          "High-quality learning environments are a necessary precondition for facilitation and enhancement of the ongoing learning process."

          Because of confusion, it was later changed to this:

          "Children need good schools if they are to learn properly."

          John.

          hahaha

          But the MBA's dig the former kind, don't they?

          I recently did a seminar for top executives... and some of them thought my ideas would never work. Why? They were too simple.:rolleyes:
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  • Profile picture of the author BirtieB51
    Typos are one thing - I overlook occasional mistakes because we all make them. However, lousy grammar, spelling mistakes and poor word usage make me cringe. I would steer away from the products being sold. I also steer away from the TV station that has hired incompetent reporters. And I almost fell down when I overheard an elementary school teacher saying to a line of first-graders, "Y'all squeeze against the wall so's y'don't git runned over!"

    Happy New Year!
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      Paulette,
      I almost fell down when I overheard an elementary school teacher saying to a line of first-graders, "Y'all squeeze against the wall so's y'don't git runned over!"
      Okay. Consider the function of grammar when answering this question:

      Do you believe any of those students had any difficulty at all understanding the message that teacher was communicating?


      Paul
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      • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
        Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

        Paulette,Okay. Consider the function of grammar when answering this question:

        Do you believe any of those students had any difficulty at all understanding the message that teacher was communicating?


        Paul
        Nah, I think the more important thing to do in this specific case is consider the function of the teacher.

        All the best,
        Michael
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        • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
          Michael,
          Nah, I think the more important thing to do in this specific case is consider the function of the teacher.
          The two are rather closely tied together.

          The average American rarely, if ever, travels more than 50 miles from their home. If the culture in their area adopts a variant on the rules of grammar, who are we to tell them they're wrong?

          Let's keep in mind that grammar is nothing more than a social convention. When a teacher operates within her students' social environment, it's appropriate to use that society's grammar.


          Paul
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      • Profile picture of the author ERPLeadsWriter
        Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

        Paulette,Okay. Consider the function of grammar when answering this question:

        Do you believe any of those students had any difficulty at all understanding the message that teacher was communicating?


        Paul
        Personally I see your point and I say this not really as a business person but one who had to take up linguistics back in college. There's a good case against so-called Grammar Nazism but (and I'm seriously stressing this) function and grammar still have some ties.

        A few examples I can think of range from telemarketing to blogging. Now I share the same office space with telemarketers and I'm very impressed whenever I overhear them speak on the phone with someone. Is there grammar perfect? I can't tell because I can understand them very well.

        However, I'm not surprised either when I read about other telemarketing groups who end up humiliating themselves by hiring agents with thick accents. Not only did these types strike me as hard to understand but they sorely tempted me to start stereotyping (seriously, you do NOT want me to go there).

        The same with blogging. 40-50% of the time I'm doing some research, I stumble upon a blog so badly written, I can actually recognize an 'accent' there as well. Not only do I NOT understand what I'm reading, the stereotypes start actually reciting what I'm reading in my head. Seriously, not cool.

        The thing is even if your sense of grammar is loose by the standards of Grammar Nazis, it shouldn't be THAT loose.
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  • Profile picture of the author timb98133
    Of course it does. It's a fact of life, first impressions are everything. You can have the best product in the world, but it doesn't mean anything if you don't present yourself well.

    I understand we have a lot of people on here where English isn't their native language. In cases like this it's important to get a native English speaker to review materials before they are posted.
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  • Profile picture of the author waywrite
    I agree with most of the replies about the degree of errors being a determinate factor. I do purchase products where there are errors in the script or dialogue.

    If a product is full of errors, I don't purchase it. I think anyone who wants to be successful owes their audience a certain amount of respect regardless of their reading level.

    I also think it is good practice to upgrade our skills in every area online, rather than add to the trash out there that gives marketers a bad name.
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  • Profile picture of the author Matt Banks
    What people say and what people do are 2 different things. This is like the study everyone said they did not care how a salesman dressed but in the university study they did, but sub-consciously.
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  • Profile picture of the author Drizlek
    Personally, I do feel that grammar and spelling mistakes do take away from the legitimacy of any email, sales page, etc. Thankfully we are in a world where spell check is widely available. If you are unsure how to spell something correctly, Google it... chances are you will be provided with the correct spelling of the word. What actually surprises me is that your average person picks up on spelling mistakes any more. With the way most of us just skim the information available instead of actually reading it we are lucky we catch any errors at all.


    Now proper grammar I am a bit more flexible on. I understand the use of slang or shortened words (even though I feel it is just lazy English) so I give that some slack. But there are times where the grammar of someone is so bad that it gives you a headache. I have found this personally true especially when having articles written from places outside the US. Now not every write outside the US is bad... there are plenty of good ones out there. But if I were to post some of the examples I have you would either fall out of your chair laughing or end up drooling on your keyboard from the brain damage it caused trying to decipher the text. And I refuse to be legally responsible for any injuries it may cause.
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  • Profile picture of the author jotNscribble
    What a great question!

    The replies have been so useful.

    My thoughts:
    I tend to write in stream-of-consciousness style on forums and to friends. When I read back what I've written, I sometimes see gaping errors. That's a bit of a problem, but I let it go for the most part. When I write for clients or write to promote myself, you can bet I'll go over my work with a fine-toothed comb! I expect the same of others who are trying to sell or promote something. Minor mistakes can be forgiven, somewhat. When it goes beyond minor, I walk away.

    Words might be the ONLY thing a prospect can evaluate when forming an opinion about worthiness.
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  • Profile picture of the author mimi k
    A few typos are one thing, but I tend to think it looks rushed and not proofread when there are too many blatant grammatical errors, but then English is my subject so I'm pickier than most
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  • Profile picture of the author mrtreyk
    Oversights in grammar are acceptable to some degree, but it's definitely not acceptable if it's a recurring constantly (and I don't mean the same word being misspelled over and over again)...
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  • Profile picture of the author Robert X
    Me not two affected by grahmmmers. U no,, i not perfect
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  • Profile picture of the author ibmethatswhoib
    I could care less, it's about the content of their character/post not their errors jk. No really, I could care less to a point. I grew up in an urban area with not the greatest schools but learned decent grammar. My girlfriend grew up in a wealthy area and hates it and doesn't trust or like people with tons of grammar errors. Truth is, for some it doesn't matter and some they instantly disregard what you say, so ehh. Do what you do, who cares.
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  • Profile picture of the author swirly
    I feel it can make an impact it really depends on the industry you’re in, for SEO it is becoming more and more important to ensure all articles and website text is spelt correctly and doesn’t contain grammar errors
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    • Profile picture of the author GregT
      Banned
      Originally Posted by swirly View Post

      I feel it can make an impact it really depends on the industry you're in, for SEO it is becoming more and more important to ensure all articles and website text is spelt correctly and doesn't contain grammar errors
      You are right about not just the conversion part of good grammar, but also Panda may kick your butt too!
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  • Profile picture of the author isimrikasharma
    Bad grammar will not disturb your credibility but a nice grammar will surely help in enhancing it.
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    • Profile picture of the author kiwiviktor81
      I think that another thing to consider is that we don't buy stuff in a vacuum - there are also dozens of competing products out there. If I don't know how good any of them are, the ones that have bad spelling/grammar are easy to weed out from the rest.
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  • Profile picture of the author chansgrose
    The simple answer is yes! Why should I even take what they are saying into consideration if they cannot use proper grammar
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    • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
      Originally Posted by trexpro View Post

      The simple answer is yes! Why should I even take what they are saying into consideration if they cannot use proper grammar
      Should I not consider what you are saying because you forgot a question mark?

      Like I said...this thread is very funny.

      All the best,
      Michael
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  • Profile picture of the author abugah
    Grammar matters, here is why... in a recent AOL survey, 68 percent of respondents said E-mails with spelling and punctuation errors annoyed them.

    That tells me that though to the writer it may not matter, readers get riled with punctuation, spelling errors; poor sentence structure and lexical errors.
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  • Profile picture of the author officer_iron
    Here's an extremely disturbing trend I'm noticing all over the internet (and I apologize if it has already been metioned): Adding an apostrophe before the 's' when pluralizing a word.

    I keep seeing "video's," and "report's." What's the deal with thi's?
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    • Profile picture of the author John Coutts
      Originally Posted by officer_iron View Post

      I keep seeing "video's," and "report's." What's the deal with thi's?
      Stupidity maybe? Who know's ...
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  • Profile picture of the author lof111
    Grammar matters! I have had some tests, and in case of bad grammar i had bad CTR but in case of "water content", but gramatically correct, the CTR was much higher
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  • Profile picture of the author AndreasJacobsen
    They lose credibility to me... Less professional
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  • Profile picture of the author officer_iron
    Hahaha

    Too much shine to be drinkin'...

    Hilarious
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  • Profile picture of the author MrOfferz
    I just think you put less trust in the message or results of whatever is being written about when there is bad grammar. The reason is that in this day and age, its really just not that hard to make sure that its correct.
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  • Profile picture of the author hustlinsmoke
    When I am pumping out emails. I pump. I don't spell check or anything out. The more mails I get out the more money I make, I usually get a handful of so called perfect people. I usually find its a Teacher or just a critic. I always write them back and speak rednect <--
    did that on purpose. to them.

    In Forums, I try to spell right and slow down but still I do not spell check. Not worth the time. Money is helping people so the more posts I can reply to the better.

    Blogs a little different, I think people read blogs at a slower pace and so I try to make my spelling count.

    I am more careful with content. Website and Sales Content I am pretty careful. Although I can have a great product and go back over the sales page to see why and see blatant errors in there, even paragraphs missing.

    Seriously unless you have mistake after mistake I do not think people mind except for the critics and such.

    Money is time and I try to manage it as fast as possible.
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    • Profile picture of the author pbrite
      My spam mail is always full of bad grammar. If spammers don't care then does a legit website care about the details?
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  • Profile picture of the author MattCatania
    Personally, if somebody is trying to sell me an information product, and it's clear to me that they haven't really grasped the English language quite well - well then, in my eyes, it does discredit them.
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    • Profile picture of the author hustlinsmoke
      Originally Posted by MattCatania View Post

      Personally, if somebody is trying to sell me an information product, and it's clear to me that they haven't really grasped the English language quite well - well then, in my eyes, it does discredit them.
      I can show you sales copy after sales copy of million dollar products that have spelling errors. I think what you are talking about are the ones that are blatant. Or the ones that add no conjunctions or things like that. I will hardly ever keep reading if it is written in proper english form. I need my slang to get with it.
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  • Profile picture of the author Peru101
    Being a writer, poor grammar is a reflection of the product it is on.
    If I'm reading an article from a directory, I push it aside because I know that it's just a directory link and give the writer the benefit of the doubt.
    If I see it on a website, I cringe because this is your own asset we're talking about here; you can at least proofread your work or get it proofread.
    And if I see it on a sales page, red flags start rising, especially if there's a few. If you didn't take the time or effort to proof your work, why should I trust you? Presentation is everything! It's all I have to judge whether or not you will give me the product you say. If the copy is good besides, I will still buy. And if I already trust the marketer, I will let it slide because I know regardless of the mistakes, the product will be good.
    In short, if you're new, better build trust and credibility first, especially when selling to people.
    But if you've been around, you get a little more leeway.

    On another but similar note, a warrior's WSO once apologized for the spelling mistakes up front, saying he didn't have time to go back and double check. Are you kidding me?
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  • Profile picture of the author hustlinsmoke
    No offense to Peru101, If I was a writer and saw my craft as being kicked in the dirt. I would probally be upset too. But this is why my sales copy and website content is usually always done by a writer and not myself.
    Like I said about the only ones that get annoyed are Teachers writers or people just looking to cause annoyance. For the average person they do not know the difference between, to, too, have, had ect. And as far as I know, Most people my age who have been out of school for 25 years, can not spell worth a darn anyways.

    I will add a disclaimer again, if its blatant and alot it will annoy me. Like yoou peple ect.
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  • Profile picture of the author Doris8888
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    • Profile picture of the author CDarklock
      Originally Posted by Doris8888 View Post

      If I see 1-2 mistakes, it probably won't influence my buying decision
      Yet on the other hand, you think cookie stuffing is perfectly acceptable.
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  • Profile picture of the author jerzykaz
    Grammar is big. If you can't spell and you are offering a course on how to write sales copies, how did you make money in the first place?
    That being said, I have seen some great products, that people really liked even though grammar was crappy, since the value was bigger than inappropriate grammar.
    Thanks
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  • Profile picture of the author FormerWageSlave
    On a forum it matters less to me... it's casual in here and responses happen quickly, sometimes too fast to bother checking.

    In a sales letter, or an article... spelling and grammar absolutely matter. If your grammar is poor or you're misspelling words, I think you're stupid, you lose credibility with me and I really don't buy info products from people who appear stupid.
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    grrr...

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  • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
    ...and the beat goes on...and the beat goes on...
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    "Ich bin en fuego!"
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  • Profile picture of the author DavidTT
    yes it does. I mean think about it, if the potiential customer is reading your stuff and see's you as the industry professional but see's a lot of grammar mistakes, I think it kinda removes a bit of their confidence in you.

    If you have a more personal approach and talk to the person as if he's your buddy (usually gives a better connection), they I think it's okay though
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