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Punctuation Is Critical In B2B Marcom

Category:
  • B2B Marcom
  • Knowing that I am a stickler for proper punctuation, a colleague shared with me a link toNationalPunctuationDay.com. How fortunate that the message arrived on National Punctuation Day!

    I like this site. I don't particularly like the "cutesy" nature (though I understand they are trying to appeal to a certain demographic). What I do like is their passion and their recommendations, rules, and guidance.

    One key issue with my B2B Marcom practice is complexity. Our technological messages often include both sophisticated terms, lists, and process step discussions. Things can get confusing - comprehension can be affected. Therefore, I am a staunch advocate of the "serial comma". Guess what? NationalPunctuationDay.com boldly endorses the serial comma! Yay!

    Site manager, Jeff Rubin (aka "Punctuation Man") offers, "Punctuation counts. A misplaced comma can alter the meaning of a sentence." I add that, when dealing with complicated messages, it is critical to make the reading as easy as possible for the audience. Of course, this means a great amont of effort must be spent in the construction phase - to design simplicity and clarity into the sentence. Still, any and every tool that further adds to the ease of reading is valuable. This is especially true when communications is your business.

    This site lists the 13 punctuation marks (see image), defines each, provides examples of use, and extols the value of each. There are even links, provided for each punctuation mark, to style books and other resources.

    For example:

    ELLIPSIS

    The ellipsis consists of three evenly spaced dots (periods) with spaces between the ellipsis and surrounding letters or other marks.

    The omission from a sentence or other construction of one or more words understandable from the context that would complete or clarify the construction. A mark to indicate the omission of letters or words. The ellipsis can also be used to indicate a pause in the flow of a sentence and is especially useful in quoted speech.

    This site is fun AND practical. For my B2B Marcom practice it will serve as a point of reference. But here's the real application (for me). Since content is king, and since I have many individuals generating and delivering content to our target audience, I need to be sure that we, as a company, look professional and that our target audience gets the message clearly. So, I plan to use this website to augment the education and practice of all the people who create tech papers, blog postings, case studies, presentations, presentations, etc.

    Image: nationalpunctuationday.com