marketing via grammar

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Proper spelling and grammar is incredibly important in marketing because it conveys professionalism, attention to detail and subconsciously allows a potential client to rest easy in the knowledge that you know what you are doing and that you will do it correctly. The English language can be tricky with all of the homonyms we have, so here are some common errors wedding professionals make in their copy writing. Check over your website and blog to ensure that what you are presenting is correct: this is one of those areas that sets you apart from your competition in your client's mind, even if they can't put their finger on it.

The definitions below are via and the terms that apply to the wedding and event industry are in bold:

Stationary: adjective
1. standing still; not moving.
2. having a fixed position; not movable.
3. established in one place; not itinerant or migratory.

Stationery: noun
1. writing paper.
2. writing materials, as pens, pencils, paper, and envelopes.

A simple memory trick for this one is to remember that it has an "e" for engagement ring.


Isle: noun
1. a small island.
2. any island.

Aisle: noun
1. a walkway between or along sections of seats in a theater, classroom, or the like.
2. Architecture.
a. a longitudinal division of an interior area, as in a church, separated from the main area by an arcade or the like.
b. any of the longitudinal divisions of a church or the like.


Alter: verb (used with object)
1. to make different in some particular, as size, style, course, or the like; modify: to alter a coat; to alter a will; to alter course.

Altar: noun
1. an elevated place or structure, as a mound or platform, at which religious rites are performed or on which sacrifices are offered to gods, ancestors, etc.

This one is tricky because both variations apply to weddings. The first, spelled with the letter "e" refers to having a dress or a tux altered or changed. The second, spelled with the letter "a" is the sacred area in a church or house of worship.


Desert: noun
1. a region so arid because of little rainfall that it supports only sparse and widely spaced vegetation or no vegetation at all: The Sahara is a vast sandy desert.
2. any area in which few forms of life can exist because of lack of water, permanent frost, or absence of soil.

Dessert: noun
1. cake, pie, fruit, pudding, ice cream, etc., served as the final course of a meal.

An easy way to remember the tasty treat versus the Phoenix landscape is that the letter "s" appears twice in dessert because it is super sweet.


This one is not a homonym; it is simply a very common misspelling that I frequently see in wedding literature and on websites:

Engagment vs Engagement

The second "e" is what turns the pronounciation from "gag" to "gauge". Hopefully no one is gagging over the fact that your clients are planning to get married!


For more common wedding related misspellings and grammar mistakes, check out this post on DIY Bride.

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