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Associate Editor

Mike's Blog

By Michael Cornnell

About Michael

Michael Cornnell is Associate Editor for Promo Marketing Magazine.

 

Kiwi's Coaching Corner

Paul  Kiewiet
How Much Do You Care?
Dec 18, 2014

If you don’t care enough to figure out their pain, why should they care about you? Are you tired of...



Lights, Camera, Promotion!

Brittany Hahn
New-fashioned Writing Instruments
Dec 17, 2014

Writing helps me remember things way better than typing does. In "Write It Down, Make It Happen," author Henriette Anne...



Not So Technically Speaking

Dale Denham
Top Blogs of 2014
Dec 16, 2014

I have thoroughly enjoyed receiving emails and seeing comments on my different blogs in 2014. Hopefully, I have delivered some...



Compliance Chat

Jeff Jacobs
For Apple, It May Not Be the Money
Dec 12, 2014

You’ve probably heard the buzz created when Apple's attorneys contacted promotional products distributors last week. The issue is aftermarket charging...



Jeff's Rant

Jeff Solomon, MAS
I Could Have Slept In Too
Dec 11, 2014

Sleeping in may not be the most refreshing thing I could do early on a Saturday morning. In my first commentary, I...



Selling Smarter

Rosalie Marcus
Year-end Tips to Increase Sales Now!
Dec 9, 2014

While some may be slacking off this time of year, savvy promotional products sales professionals know that it's not too...



Million Dollar Mindset with Greg Muzzillo

Greg Muzzillo
New Year's Revolutions
Dec 1, 2014

You’ve heard many times that the definition of insanity is to continue to do the same things and expect different...



Quick Thoughts by Cliff Quicksell, MAS

Cliff Quicksell, MAS
Athletics and Business Intertwine to Show Life Lessons: Thoughts from an Athlete Parent
Nov 24, 2014

As I was growing up—and even to this day, I am very involved in athletics. As a high-schooler and through...



Beyond Words

Rebecca Kollmann, MAS+
Taming the Monster
Nov 17, 2014

Today, we’re going to look at something very small, but also very important. It’s unseen by many, lurking in the...



Be Bold, Be Different, Be Memorable

Rick Greene, MAS
Setting Annual Sales Goals are a Waste of Time II—Sales Goals Strike Back
Oct 29, 2014

For some people, setting sales goals is not a waste of time. It's all about perceptions, really—perceptions that empower and...



Guest Blogs

Guest Contributor
How Can a 3D Printer Make You Money?
Oct 24, 2014

One of the most difficult parts of getting the sale is showing the customer exactly what they want when they...



Editor's Notes

Nichole Stella
The Perfect Match
Mar 5, 2013

The Super Bowl has also become the Ad Bowl, where brands duke it out to see who has the funniest,...



Embellished

Kyle Richardson
The Best Laid Plans
Jul 11, 2014

Why it's always smart to keep a planner with your schedule and important documents, and why it's never smart to...



Promotional Fashionista

Colleen McKenna
5 Soccer Promotions for After the World Cup
Jul 1, 2014

Studies show that Americans prefer soccer to NASCAR. Here are five items to sell to soccer fans....



The Hot Button

Mary Ellen Sokalski, MAS
"How It's Made" Can Make You More
Jun 11, 2014

The show "How Its Made" is celebrating its 22nd season on television. How can we be a hit, season after season,...



Be Dazzled

Elise Hacking Carr
Got Control Issues?
May 14, 2014

Does chaos define you? How you respond to certain situations says a lot about your character. Here are five quotes...



Big Picture Promo

Matt Kaspari, CAS
Meeting Clients Where They Are
Oct 24, 2013

Promotional marketing is at its best when it empowers a client’s brand, meets his or her objectives and fits within...



My Two Cents

Rick Brenner
For Promotional Product Sales, Protect Your Client's Brand
Jun 3, 2013

Whether you are selling to a global brand like Nike or to your local YMCA, no single asset is more...



Friday Sales-thought of the Week!

Dale Limes, MAS
Reverse Engineer Your Sales Success
Mar 18, 2013

Steven Covey reminds us that when setting goals ... "Start with the end in mind." That is to visualize the...



The Sales Challenge

Bill Farquharson
Think and Succeed
May 29, 2012

What would happen if you woke up in the morning and your first thought was, "I am never going to...



Creating More Purposeful Sales Conversations

Lisa Leitch, CSP, MAS
Under 100 Days to Achieve 2011 Goals
Oct 20, 2011

It's hard to believe, but there are fewer than 100 days left to achieve 2011 goals! Are you on track...



How to Not Send 8,000 Misspelled Bags to Missouri State University

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Last Friday's newsletter ran one of our biggest stories ever, "Missouri State University Misspells Name on Over 8,000 Promotional Bags." Either you guys are really into schadenfreude, majorly concerned with proofreading, or maybe just HUGE Missouri State fans (obviously the most likely answer. Go Crazy Beavers! Or whatever their mascot is! I don't really follow college sports! Because they're so boring! Unlike exclamation points, which are the best!!! See?!?!?!)

Anywho, the story brought in a huge amount of traffic for us. And while I don't have much to say about schadenfreude ("It's great" pretty much covers it,) or college sports (see above), I can talk a little about proofreading (it's partly how I make my living after all.) So, if you're worried about ending up like the poor souls who let a relatively big typo slip by their eyes, indulge and absorb yourself of my proofreading advice below.

1. For the Love of God and Kittens, Use Spell Check On Every Single Thing You Write
Your computer's spell check is not perfect, but that doesn't matter. Spell check is where your proofreading starts on every bit of copy you write. It doesn't matter if you're working in a word processor or not. Take the text you write, copy and paste it into Word or TextEdit or whatever, then look for the red squiggly lines. If there are red squiggly lines, either you or your computer is dumb. Figure out which of you it is, then make the necessary corrections. Green squiggly lines also aren't good, so you should look at correcting those as well.

I can't tell you the amount of third-party copy I look at every day that obviously hasn't been spell-checked. It's horrendous because it takes roughly two clicks to spell-check something, and it's a really efficient and painless way to remove 9/10 of the errors from your piece. I'm not sure why more people don't do it, other than arrogance and gross sloth, but I think we can agree, those aren't palatable excuses. ("Sorry Mr. Client, I didn't proof that thing because I didn't feel like it, and also who cares?") So please, just spell-check every single line of copy you write. It takes like 4 seconds and you'll be surprised by the number of errors you catch.

2. Proofread in Pairs—Or Triplicate
Before a piece goes out, have two-to-three people proofread the copy. Even the strongest proofreader is fallible, so having extra eyes on something is an easy way to reduce your chances of an error slipping past. People get tired, careless or accidently miss stupid little mistakes all the time, but it's not usually the same error, hence the value of multiple proofers.

3. Keep a Hawk's Eye Over Art Changes
If I had to guess how the Missouri State Bag error happened, I'd say someone called for a font or text change last-minute, and no one bothered to check the new version. If my experience in the magazine business is any indication, this is how 4,000 percent of errors make it to print. It's so easy to trust your art person to make a small change without error, but it's also a preposterously easy way to get slammed with typos. Copy and pasting the wrong text, using an old file, or simply careless typing, there are so many ways an art change can go wrong, it's critical that you closely proofread after each one.

I'm not saying art people are careless or otherwise prone to error, I just mean that at the ends of projects, where people are getting tired and rushed, that's where mistakes start happening. So it's not an art-person thing, it's a deadline-stress/fatigue thing. It's just human error, there's a chance for it in everything we do, which is why every art change should be thoroughly proofed, even the simplest, smallest change.

That's it for this week guys! Thanks for reading and see you all next week!

Like my blog? Why not follow PM on Twitter or Facebook (or just me on RSS or LinkedIn) so you never miss a post? Thanks!

Monday Mike Fact: Saw Skyfall over the weekend. It was awful, a weird mix of The Dark Knight and Home Alone. I'm sure that sounds awesome, but in actuality it was terrible, boring and embarrassing. A man is eaten by a CGI komodo dragon in a busy casino, and no one reacts, screams or even says "hey, uh, did that security guy just get eaten? Maybe we should tell someone? Like a manager or a doctor or something?" Nope! Just keep playing craps and let James Bond happily walk out with a huge briefcase of money! Makes perfect sense, and by perfect sense, I mean I should have rented Wreck-it Ralph.
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COMMENTS

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Most Recent Comments:
Jerry Duke - Posted on February 19, 2013
What I don't understand is how could they have gotten half the order right and the other half wrong. Looks like someone caught the error and fixed it., but why didn't they stop right there and fix the entire order? This order doesn't pass the smell test.
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Archived Comments:
Jerry Duke - Posted on February 19, 2013
What I don't understand is how could they have gotten half the order right and the other half wrong. Looks like someone caught the error and fixed it., but why didn't they stop right there and fix the entire order? This order doesn't pass the smell test.