If you are a marketing, PR or advertising professional, words are a big part of your working world. Actually, they are probably an integral part of who you are as a person, and that means that more than once you have cringed over a misused “your/you’re” in a social media meme or secretly wanted to erase the extra apostrophe from the grocer’s sign proclaiming “Farm Fresh Bean’s.”
If those scenarios rang true, you might be a grammar nerd. Grammarly.com recently described the anatomy of a grammar nerd. They have the credentials to recognize one: 5 million Facebook fans follow the grammar-focused blog, which looks at both the serious and the humorous sides of proper writing etiquette.
So, how do you match up?
Some grammar gaffes grate more than others. I hate seeing a company referred to as if it were a person. Do not write: The company celebrated their 50th anniversary. The company celebrated its anniversary.
And, remember, it has been in business more than 50 years, not over 50 years. “More than” refers to quantity; “over” is a position, as in “over the moon.”
While Grammarly says most grammar nerds are Oxford comma fans, I lean toward the AP style of comma usage. Blame it on my journalism degree. No matter which side of that debate you fall on, you have to agree that a firm grasp of the rules is essential in creating engaging and useful content. It is one of five basic criteria to look at when evaluating the content you and your staff create. You’ll find the other four, and suggestions for improving your content, in our Content Quality Report Card.
What makes your fingers twitch and your skin crawl as you search for an editing pen? There, they’re, their … we understand. I think you might be a grammar nerd, too.