If you ever needed more evidence of the disease being spread by the content marketers, just read a typical content marketer’s content or “curated” online publication.
The mistake these cyber-hustlers perpetuate is summed up by this phrase “I type, therefore I am….a copywriter”. The “experts” peddling content marketing claim “everybody writes”. Well sorry to state the obvious, but it’s simply not true.
Everybody types, but not everybody writes.
Here’s a headline running today, in the curated online “news” site The Daily Mail.
Parents ‘disgusted’ after finding swear words on books candles and beach towels in popular stationary shop on display in front of children
I’m no grammar dude, but any primary school child knows the word stationary means “standing still, not moving”. Just like the brain of the article’s author.
Anything referring to writing materials, books, pens etc is known as “stationery“. The easy way to remember it is “e for envelope”.
Here’s a clanger by BigW – sent to me by a colleague who wants anonymity. And the company wonders why it’s standing still in terms of growth?
And here’s another typo I noticed in the Qantas magazine last week.
The subhead says “Epson have it in the bag“.
The last time I looked Epson was singular, while have is plural – in layman’s terms.
The subhead should read: “Epson has it in the bag”.
Mistakes like this are everywhere. An application I read for a marketing role requiring writing skills, included the following: “Unfortunately, motor accidents do happen, with thousands hospitalised in Queensland due to road traffic crashes each year.”
The subject of this sentence is “motor accidents”. How do thousands of motor accidents end up in hospital each year?
Maybe Confucius should be taught in schools? Here’s what he had to say about communication:
“If language is not correct, then what is said is not what is meant; if what is said is not what is meant, then what must be done remains undone; if this remains undone, morals and art will deteriorate; if justice goes astray, the people will stand about in helpless confusion. Hence there must be no arbitrariness in what is said. This matters above everything.”
This gives me an idea. Given the B.S. being peddled by the content marketers, maybe content marketing should be rebranded. Just call it “helpless confusion” as that’s how it makes most intelligent marketers feel…