Are you looking for a boost in book sales? You posted your book’s sales letter months ago. You double checked your easy ordering process. Yet, people visit your book’s web site and leave empty handed.
Don’t be discouraged. You may be making the simple mistakes many make before selling. This could be the trigger you’ve been looking for. Simply put, professionalism inspires confidence. Whether you’re writing an article, a brochure or your web site sales letter, your words work powerfully for you or against you.
In the same way professionalism inspires confidence to purchase your book, grammatical errors and misspelled words may cost you in lost sales. Correct these writing mistakes and translate your professionalism to more book sales.
1. Failure to check for spelling and grammatical errors. Don’t be lazy; use spell check. Also, look for singular nouns coupled with plural verbs and vice versa. Check for homonyms correctly spelled but misused words like to, two, and too or effect and affect. Correct punctuation errors like the symbol Em dash to indicate duration instead of two dashes.
2. Failure to check all dates, times, prices. Assign someone else to verify dates, prices and times. It’s embarrassing and may drain profits to send out information then retract it because it’s incorrect. Before distributing a newsletter, posting web content or submitting a proposal, call telephone numbers, visit websites, send emails and faxes requesting return confirmation.
3. Failure to slash passive structures. Passive sentences slow and dull your writing. Get rid of the passive voice sentences. Give your sentences a clear subject and a verb to avoid the passive voice. “The writer found fame and fortune through marketing her books online.” instead of “The writer’s books were instrumental in leading her to fame and fortune.” Avoid connecting verbs like ‘was’, ‘is’, ‘had’, and ‘seemed’. Replace passive voice verbs with active verbs.
4. Failure to cut selfish constructions containing ‘I’. Minimize the “I” in your writing. Your audience wants to know what you can do them. Answer their questions. Solve their problems with each solution. During the editing process, circle each “I” and replace as many as you can with a “you” centered sentence.
5. Failure to shorten your sentences. Slash your sentences to under 15-17 words. Don’t bog your readers with complex sentences. Remember multiple phrases slow your reader’s comprehension. Make it easy. Get to the point fast.
6. Failure to write compelling copy. Write for the 8-10 grade level. Reward your readers with benefits for them. Clear, easy to understand copy makes your reader want to read your piece to the end. Fill your writing with what’s in it for them. They’ll come back for more and tell all their friends.
7. Failure to avoid pompous language. The shortest, most well known words are best. The more syllables in a word, the less compelling it becomes. Cut all unnecessary adjectives.
8. Failure to be specific. Avoid generalities. Engage your reader’s emotion with specifics. Let them experience color, size and shape. Instead of, “Complete your degree online fast to increase your income.” Say, “Complete your master degree online fast so you can upgrade your lifestyle, get vacations, health insurance and other corporate benefits.” Specific benefits create a stronger pull than the general benefit of increased income.
9. Failure to slash adverbs. Go through and cut words like openly, suddenly, very that tell the reader instead of show the reader. Circle all the (ly) and very words. Pull out your thesaurus and replace them with power words that show emotion or describe.
10. Failure to check the flow of information. Check your paragraphs for good harmonic flow and understanding. Meaning, make sure you don’t drop off suddenly and change the subject. Clear writing creates compelling copy. Compelling copy leads to more book sales.
Are you ready to translate your professionalism to profits? Correct the above mistakes and watch your sales soar from the minute you publish. Remember to check for spelling and grammatical errors, check all dates, times and prices, slash the passive voice, cut the selfish constructions containing “I”, shorten sentences, write compelling copy, avoid generalities, slash the adverbs and check your flow of information. Implement these ten tips to begin proofreading for profits!