Where to turn

Today, Sunday 8 September, is International Literacy Day. The issue of literacy is a key component of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. Adopted by world leaders in September 2015, the goals promote universal access to quality education and learning opportunities throughout people’s lives.

We are fortunate in this country to have free, universal education and most people leave school able to read and write. So it’s easy to think that we can all write to promote the organisations we work for. But no doubt you can think of an example of poor writing in a professional context. An apostrophe in the wrong place, a key word that’s missing or a spelling mistake. All these things make an organisation seem unprofessional and leave us wondering if they’re competent. This is why it is important to make sure your writing is professional. First impressions count.

After first impressions have been made then the next thing is to get across your message. Clear writing makes sure your readers know what you’re offering and how you can help them. While you know your organisation inside out and can probably think of a dozen ways you improve your clients’ lives, you need to take a step back when it comes to promotion. Potential clients won’t remember all 12 ways you could help them – so what’s the most important one thing for them to take away? Don’t forget your clients may not be au fait with the industry language, they may not know the hundreds of acronyms which make your working life easier, so keep language simple. You need to get your message across clearly so clients can understand how you can help them.

Once your have covered the first two points you will be on your way to winning new clients, donors or volunteers. But to really close the deal you will need to persuade them to join you and convince them of the benefit of working with you. These two really are the holy grail of good business writing. They take time to be cultivated and refined. But of course, if you don’t have time to cultivate and refine, or you want to make sure your message is simple and your writing is professional then that’s how Comma can help.