How bad grammar may be damaging your brand

A Forbes columnist has argued that ‘Internet speak’ and brands trying to sound like their customers could be eroding reputations.

If you watched “Weird Al” Yankovic’s video for his new song “Word Crimes” this week, you saw a pretty great summary of grammar’s sad state. Your brand, it seems, might be in danger as well. It’s easy to blame the Internet’s hyper-speed culture for creating some super annoying shorthand, but for some of us, grammar is still valued. Writing for Forbes, Jason DeMers asks an important question: Is bad grammar killing your brand? He writes:

For business owners, advertisers, and marketers, the effect of the internet on grammar and spelling reaches further than many expect. It goes beyond personal communications and being slightly irked at random typos and errors that one may come across while perusing the web; how a brand communicates and connects online is a reflection of the company itself, and that includes using certain types of languages on various social and digital platforms.

When developing a brand voice, there’s always the question of how conversational you should be in what you say and how you say it. It’s a delicate balance—and one that can make or break a brand’s image. The need to be “authentic” is often mistaken as the need to sound like your audience. Sound too much like your audience, though, and you can end up coming across as just as roughly as they do. How do you strike a balance?


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