“Don’t sweat the small stuff.” We’ve heard that adage a million times. And there is some truth to it. But in my experience, the small stuff does deserve sweating over; because often it is the small stuff that will trip you up. Let me explain!
First impressions count. Without a good first one, there is little chance for a second one. If you come off sounding like a buffoon to the prospective client, that client will continue looking. And that also applies (perhaps even more) to the written word.
We live in an industry based on details. Payment dates, complex itineraries, airline routings, credit card numbers, confirmation numbers, GDS codes, and more fill our days; and being accurate is critical for success. Screw it up and send a client to Panama City, Panama without a passport because they were looking for Florida and you are toast!
People have so many choices when planning travel. Finding solid and loyal clients is not as easy as it was in pre-internet days. We need to give them a solid reason to trust our expertise and us!
Book Now. Special Rates End September 31!
That subject line is NOT one of them. And yes, that is a legitimate subject line of a promotional email from a travel professional. For those that missed it, thirty days hath September, April, June and November. All the rest have thirty-one, excepting February.
I see them all the time.
- Effect/Affect (this one gets me often… I am likely to just use “impact”)
And my personal peeve… “ect.”
As a consumer, when I see these types of errors I automatically question how serious the seller really is. After all, I am parting with my hard earned cash.
Many people will not notice it; but what if the one that does, happens to be your golden client? Is it worth the risk?
When I write anything for publication, I scour it several times. I run through spell check (which can be dangerous itself—be certain to get every letter in the word “public” or you could change the entire meaning. I often will send it to a friend that will give it a quick read and offer a tip or catch a mistake. It is well worth the extra effort!
You only get one chance for a first impression—don’t blow it.
And as we move to more casual forms of communication, I understand that we can loosen up the rules for a text response or one on social media. I don’t like it, but I also understand it.