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15 Grammar Disasters Everyone But the Brand Noticed

15 Grammar Disasters Everyone But the Brand Noticed Blog Feature

Ramona Sukhraj

Associate Director of Content, Strategized Initiatives That Increased IMPACT’s Website Traffic From ~45K to ~400K

September 3rd, 2015 min read

It's amazing how often big brands go to print (or in the inbound case, publish) with copy that wouldn't make it through a simple spell-check.

But let's be real: It's also hilarious.

Now, before you cry "Grammar Police," I feel it's important to make the case for good grammar.

According to a study of 1,000 UK consumers, the number one thing that people hate about your brand in social media is poor spelling or grammar. This was by far the biggest complaint, with "sales-y updates" coming in at second. Shocker, right?

That doesn't mean that one mistake is going to destroy your brand's credibility -- we all make mistakes, but consistently poor grammar can make your brand look unprofessional and careless.

Brands today don't have to follow every grammatical rule in the book (it's better to speak the language of your buyer persona than that of a college English professor), but there's also a difference between using poor grammar on purpose and not knowing any better.

And believe me, everyone can spot the difference.

Here are 15 examples of grammar mistakes that everyone seemed to notice, except the brands themselves. 

1. Old Navy

It's amazing to me that this shirt design made it all the way to a public release before anyone realized the apostrophe was missing. Old Navy ended up replacing the shirt in all of their stores and online.

old_navy_grammar_mistake

2. Creative Kids Software

I'm not sure which retailer this is, but I'm just glad they're the ones selling educational software and not actually creating it.

learning_software_grammar_mistake

3. Mitt Romney

If you're applying for a job, and you misspell the name of the company you want to work for, you most likely won't get that job.

mitt_romney_grammar_mistake

4. Cincinnati State

It's extra embarrassing when a university makes grammatical mistakes. At least the billboard was advertising a science degree and not writing or literature.

cincinnati_state_grammar_mistake

5. Miller Beer

The only excuse I can come up with for the team behind this billboard is that they might have sampled too much of the product when brainstorming this groundbreaking slogan for their client.

miller_grammar_mistake

6. Stratford Hall

Let's just hope that they uphold a higher standard to detail for their customers' cards than they do for their own ads.

stratgord_hall_grammar_mistake

7. Kmart

Stay in school kids. 

kmart_grammar_mistake

8. Reebok

Reebok's right. Not everything needs to be done in a New York minute, especially not editing.

reebok_grammar_mistake

9. John McCain

I'm starting to notice a correlation between grammatical errors and presidential candidates that didn't win.

There's gotta be a lesson in there somewhere.

mccain_grammar_mistake

10. Stella Artois

I'm guessing that price is less than what it costs to hire an editor.

stella_artois_grammar_mistake

11. H&M

Since this is H&M, I'm going to give them the benefit of the doubt and assume the genius behind this design was trying to be ironic. 

HM_grammar_mistake

12. Lush Cosmetics 

While it's good that Lush is making use of their 404 page to be helpful to customers, it makes them look pretty silly having an obvious grammatical error in the headline of their "Error 404" page.

lush_grammar_mistake

13. Valley News

The first thing I thought when I saw this is: shouldn't they be using a template? Why do they have to type their name in each issue and how could this possibly make it past the editor?

The editor's note is a nice touch. We all make mistakes.

valley_news_grammar_mistake

14. Original Juice Co.

Well, one out of three right isn't that bad? This seems like another one that should be templated over at Original Juice. 

original_grammar_mistake

15. Madison Pediatric Dental

This is what happens when dental offices are short-handed -- there's no one around to spell-check!

madison_pediatric_dental_grammar_mistake

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