WARNING: This tip is so embarrassingly simple, it will probably make you angry that you don’t already do it. Unless, of course, you DO already do it, which will make you even angrier because, by making you read this, I’m completely wasting your time.
Please promise that you will not allow the aforementioned anger to manifest itself in any form of self-inflicted physical bodily harm (i.e. kicking one’s self, slapping one’s forehead, etc.).
We good? Good.
Because this one tip WILL help you improve your marketing messages.
Here it is:
Once your message is ready,
- Before you go to press…
- Before you push “send”…
- Before you approve it for production…
- Before you pass it on to the graphic designer…
- Before you publish that blog post…
- Before you tweet, pin, post, or blast…
Read it. Out loud.
The way your marketing message sounds in your head as you write will oftentimes take on a whole new tone when translated into the spoken word. So when you read it aloud, you have an auditory opportunity to catch and tweak awkward phrases, redundant words, typos, grammatical errors, copy-killing clichés, and extraneous, stuffy fluff that you didn’t notice when you were meticulously crafting the message.
It’s worth the extra time. Find an audience. Or duck into an empty room.* Use your own voice. Or workshop a silly one.
Just read it. Out loud. Then fix whatever sounds wonky.
“Wait. That’s it?!? That’s your tip? That’s way too easy! I’m angry! I want to kick myself!”
BONUS TIP: Ask someone close to you (proximity or relationship, your choice) to also read it out loud. This enables you hear another person’s performance of the message, which could totally change the way the message is interpreted. This could prove to be important because if one person is reading it that way, your customers may be reading it that way, too.
* Public restrooms tend to offer the best acoustics.