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Style Writing

M7 Terminology

M7 Services

The correct spelling is “M7 Services.” Not “M7 services”, “M7 Service”, “m7 services”, or “M7Services”.

 

To form the possessive “M7 Services”, place an apostrophe after the final “s”.

 

  • M7 Services’

Other Terminology & Style

Voice

We use the active voice and American English is the company-wide preference for word usage. We also use correct grammar and follow AP Style. We do not use profanity of derogatory language of any kind.

 

The M7 Services voice is smart, clear, helpful, inclusive, and jargon-free.

 

Technology users are our primary audience. Bult and run by entrepreneurs themselves, we at M7 Services understand the complexities of understanding technology and its’ interactions and how to resolve the conflicts and issues involved.

 

We explain complicated issues in ways that are easy to understand and useful to our customers.

 

We are inclusive in our language, topics, and audience, because we know questions can come from anywhere. We are committed to ensuring an inclusive work environment that values the diversity of people and culture.

 

We check our sources and if we make a mistake, we say so.

Mechanics

The M7 Services Global Writing Style Guide is based on the writing guidelines established in the 2020 Associated Press Stylebook (AP). When in doubt, default to AP Style. Good resources are Google or the AP Stylebook FAQ.

Purpose

M7 Services is two words. The first letter ‘M’ should always be capitalized and followed by the numeral ‘7’ immediately with no spacing. This should then be followed by one space and then the word ‘Services’ beginning with a capital ‘S’ and ending with a lowercase ‘s’. No other spellings are acceptable.

 

Boilerplate

The boilerplate (a brief description of the Company that is added to the end of press releases but can be used for other purposes) is updated on a monthly basis. There is one version, no other can be used. The up-to-date version can always be found in the M7 Services Fact Sheet.

Language

The designated business language of M7 Services, including spelling and grammar, is American business English. If an author or speaker from outside the U.S. is writing or speaking in the first person, use their native English grammar.

Style

We use the following fonts and sizes across email and presentation slides.

Email Body & Signatures

Calibri Light 11 pt font

Presentation Slides

Avenir Light 11 pt font

Formatting​

Abbreviations and Acronyms

Do not use symbols in text unless they are a part of a title. Spell out &, +, @.

 

Acronyms and initialisms generally do not have periods between the letters.

 

Plurals

 

Form the plural of an abbreviation or acronym by adding a lowercase s, without an apostrophe.

 

  • Use KPIs, MDs, PMs and SMEs – not KPI’s, MD’s, PM’s or SME’s

 

Possessives

 

To form the possessive of an acronym or an initialism, add an apostrophe ‘s’ to the plural word of the acronym and always add ‘s, even if the acronym or initialism ends in S (for example, VC’s).

Bolding

Use bold fonts for emphasis to highlight important points but use them as little as possible. Use restraint when using bold type.

Copyright Marks

Copyright marks should be placed in small print and placed conspicuously at the bottom of documents.

Currency

Use digits and currency symbols ($, etc.) instead of spelling out.

 

  • We invest $120k

 

For a dollar amount that is to be published outside of the local country, indicate the country whose dollar you are referring to. There are no spaces between country and currency symbol, or symbol and number.

 

  • US$120,00, CA$120,000 (for Canada), etc.

Dates

Always use Arabic figures (i.e. 0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10) without st, nd, rd, or th.

 

When a date refers to a month, day and year, set off the year with a comma.

 

  • Feb. 14, 2021, is our demo day.
     

Capitalize the names of months in all uses. All months with five letters or less should be written out. Abbreviate only the following months: Jan., Feb., Aug., Sept., Oct., Nov. and Dec.

 

When a phrase lists only a month and a year, no not separate the year with commas. When a phrase refers to a month, day and year, set off the year with commas.

 

  • We joined the conference in January 2016. Feb. 2 was the opening date. We received billing on March 30. We then applied to attend the following year Aug. 1, 2016.

Years

 

Do not use the term “over” when expressing number of years, use the term “more than.”

 

  • He has more than 15 years of experience.

Decimals

 

Precede decimal fractions less than 1 with a 0.

 

  • 0.888

 

Exclamation Marks

 

Exclamation marks should be used sparingly to express excitement, surprise, astonishment, emphasis of a point, or a strong emotion.

 

Headlines and Subheads

 

Capitalize the first and last words, prepositions of five or more letters, all nouns, pronouns, adjectives, adverbs, and subordinating conjunctions. Lowercase articles (a, an, the), coordinating conjunctions (and, but, for, or, nor), prepositions of four or fewer letters, and the word to.

 

  • M7 doubles Down on Hiring Commitment

  • M7 Hits Milestone of Revenue Growth

 

Do not use acronyms in headlines.

 

Lists

 

Stacked Lists

 

In technical articles, when body text introduces any type of vertical list, do not terminate the introductory text with a colon unless it is a complete sentence. If it is not a complete sentence, use nothing at all.

 

Otherwise, introduce lists in one of the following ways:

 

  1. A complete sentence followed by a colon. If the introductory statement is a complete sentence, use a colon if the sentence includes words such as the following are as follows.

 

  • The title page includes the following elements:

 

  • List Item 1

  • List item 2

  • List item 3

 

  1. A complete sentence followed by a period. If the introductory statement is a complete sentence, use a period if the sentence doesn’t’ include words such as the following or as follows.

 

  1. A clause or phrase not followed by any punctuation. If the introductory statement is clause or phrase that would not require a comma in running test, do not use punctuation.

 

Bulleted Lists

 

Use bulleted lists to stress the parallelism of several options, elements, rules, or instructions that have no particular order.

 

Within a list, make all bulleted items parallel, and begin each item with a capital letter.

 

  • This award-winning font

  • Is sans serif

  • Has many extreme angles

  • Is highly condensed

  • Costs more than similar fonts

 

Numbered Lists

 

Use a numbered list when you want to stress the sequential nature of steps, rules, or instructions, or when you want to stress that the list has a specific number of items.

 

With a list, make all numbered items parallel and begin each item with a capital letter.

 

  • Use the file conversion utility in the following way:

 

  1. Copy the email attachments onto your desktop.

  2. Drag the file icon onto the utility’s icon.

  3. Set the destination folder for the converted file.

  4. Click the Translate button.

 

Measurement

 

Use numerals with measurement, even if the number is below 10 (time units, and therefore for ages, are not considered measurements), rounding up fractions to the nearest hundredth.

 

  • The M7 Services sign is 9 ft long.

  • Our training program is 13 weeks long.

 

Nouns

 

Common nouns name any person, place, thing, or idea. They are not capitalized unless they come at the beginning of a sentence. Proper nouns are the names of specific people, places, thinks, or ideas. Proper nouns should always be capitalized. See Spelling & Glossary section for company proper nouns.

 

Numbers

 

Addresses

 

When possible, represent an address exactly as the party does.

 

Check official documents or website to see if the party uses ‘Third Street’ or “3rd Street,” West Sixty-Seventh St” or “W. 67th St.”, and so on.

 

Commas when Writing Numerals

 

Always put a comma between the hundreds place and the thousands place.

 

  • 300, 4,500, 30,00

 

Large Numbers

 

Spell out million or larger numbers, unless referring to a monetary amount where letters ‘M’ and ‘B’ may be used (see monetary amounts). Always use numerals with these numbers.

 

  • 6.3 million

  • 7 billion

 

Numbers Under 10 and Over 9

 

If a number under 10 and a number over 9 apply to the same category and appear in proximity whether in a sentence, a paragraph or a series of paragraphs- default to numerals. This is an exception to the spelling out rule.

 

  • Company’s range in size from 1 employee to more than 10.

 

Ordinals

 

Numbers used to indicate order (first, second, 10th, 25th, etc.) are called ordinal numbers. Spell out first through ninth. Use figures starting with 10th. Do not use ordinal numbers when referring to dates of the month.

 

  • First place

  • Ninth company

  • 12th year

 

Percentages

 

In written communications, spell out the word percent in narrative; use the % symbol in tables and headlines. Always use a numeral to represent percentages even at the beginning of a sentence.

 

  • 40 percent of the class is from Chicago.

 

Plurals

 

Add an s only, not apostrophe s.

 

  • 2000s

 

Ranges

 

In narrative, use the word to.

 

  • Mentor madness is 2 to 3 weeks.

 

Spelling Out

 

Always spell out numbers at the start of a sentence (except percentages and years).

 

  • Twelve employees were logged into the time clock.

 

Zero through nine: Spell out zero through nine, inclusive unless the number is being used to enumerate rather than quantify.

 

  • We are hiring for three new positions.

  • Step 3 is the trickiest.

 

Two Separate Numerals Together

 

When two separate numerals appear together, use an alternate style for each, observing the rule to spell out zero through nine if applicable, or recast the sentence.

 

  • Six 8-cent stamps

  • 112 eight-cent stamps

  • Five books of eight-cent stamps

 

Punctuation

 

Comma

 

We use the Oxford, or serial, comma. The Oxford coma is the final comma in a list of things.

 

  • “I have a book, computer, and table in my bag.”

 

In the above example, the Oxford comma comes right after ‘fun.’

 

Use commas in a sentence to set off clauses, phrases, and words that are not essential to the meaning of the sentence.

 

Use a comma to introduce a direction quotation of one sentence that remains within a paragraph.

 

  • Managing Director Kevin Smith said, “Training Day was a huge success.”

 

At the end of a quote that is embedded within a sentence, a comma goes inside the quotation mark.

 

Use a comma instead of a period at the end of a quote that is followed by attribution.

 

  • “Training Day was a huge success,” said Kevin Smith.

 

Dashes and Hyphens

 

em dash (---)

 

Use an em dash with spaces on either side to offset an aside or emphasize a key point.

 

  • M7 Services and Aimbridge go way back to when founder Jessie McMahon began the company in 2010 – prior even to the company’s official launch in 2013.

 

en dash (--)

 

Use an en dash without spaces on either side to indicate time and number ranges. If you would use the word “to,” then use an en dash.

 

  • 2020-2022, March 17-21, and 11:00 am-12:30 pm

 

hyphen (-)

 

Use hyphens to avoid ambiguity or to form a single idea from two or more words. Use them only when not using them causes confusion (small-business owner, health care center)

 

Links

 

Standalone links should not be complete sentences and therefore do not use terminal punctuation. When a complete sentence includes linked text, the link should not appear at the end of the sentence.

 

  • Learn more about M7 Services

  • Apply today to M7 Services.

 

Not

 

  • Apply today to the M7 Services.

 

Period

 

Use one single space after the period at the end of a sentence before starting a following sentence.

 

  • M7 Services was founded in 2010. M7 has over 100 employees.

 

Do not put a space between initials.

 

  • J.D. Salinger, J.K. Rowling

 

Slashes

 

Acceptable in descriptive phrases such as 24/7 or 9/11, but otherwise confine its use to special situation, as with fractions or denoting the ends of a line in quoted poetry. No spaces are used between words or articles and the slash.

 

  • 24/7 not 24 /7 or 24/ 7

 

Quotations

 

Spoken Quotes

 

It is acceptable to edit and/or paraphrase spoken quotes, even when they are enclosed in quotation marks.

 

Do not edit quotes from published material, however – they must be rendered exactly as in the original, even if they contain errors.

 

Contractions may be used when directly quoting an individual but should otherwise be avoided.

 

Tense

 

Use present tense for the verb introducing or following a quotation, except when the statement was made at a specified time in the past.

 

  • Kevin Smith, managing director, says, “This year’s employee class is a group of smart, driven, individuals.”

 

In standard U.S. English, closing quotation marks come after commas and periods, before semicolons and colons and either before or after question marks (depending on the meaning).

 

  • “Increasingly, accelerators…. strategy,” said XX.

  • Thank you for your time and support of this important initiative which will further our strategy toward becoming the “Employer of Choice.”

 

Titles of People

 

Capitalize occupational titles that immediately precede a name.

 

  • We interviewed Managing Director Kevin Smith

 

In all other cases, lowercase titles.

 

  • Kevin Smith, managing director, announced the new accelerator class.

 

Underlining

 

Only links are underlined. Underlining is not used for emphasis.

Style

 

Capitalization

 

Proper Nouns

 

Capitalize nouns that constitute the unique identification for a specific person, place or thing.

 

  • John, Tel Aviv, the EU.

 

Don’t capitalize random words in the middle of a sentence.

 

Capitalize a job title when referring to a specific person.

 

  • Community Leader Jean Dupont

 

But use lowercase when referring to jobs generally.

 

  • Community leader, mentor, facilitator, organizer, founder, etc.

 

Some words are always proper nouns. Some common nouns receive proper noun status when they are used as the name of a particular entity.

 

  • Demo Day

  • Marketing (the department name)

 

Lowercase these common nouns when they stand alone in subsequent references.

 

Lowercase the common noun elements of names in plural uses.

 

  • Marketing (the practice/activity)

 

Corporate Titles

 

CEO, CFO, COO – no need to spell out

 

Departments and Team Functions

 

Managing Direction is abbreviated as MD, without any periods

 

Program Manager is abbreviated as PM, without any periods

 

General Manager is abbreviated as GM, without any periods

 

Monetary Amounts

 

You can leverage letters ‘B’ and ‘M’ to indicate in narrative, or spell them out. i.e. $10 Billion or $10B.

 

Referencing Cities/Countries

 

For consistency and to avoid confusion, include state names in references to all U.S. cities and use country names with references to all other cities. For non-U.S. city names, include city and country.

 

U.S. and State Names

 

United States is abbreviated as U.S., with periods after each letter, unless in the header of a press release when it is written US. It is not written as USA.

 

District of Columbia is abbreviated DC, without any periods. There is no comma after Washington (not Washington, DC). Spell out in text; in addresses, use the two-letter state abbreviations.

 

Times of Day

 

Use a.m. and p.m. in running text. In signage or visual design, us AM and PM.

 

Titles of People

 

Capitalize occupational titles that immediately precede a name.

 

  • We interviewed Managing Director Kevin Smith

 

In all other cases, lowercase titles.

 

  • Kevin Smith, managing director, announced the new accelerator class.

 

URLs and Websites

 

Capitalize the names of websites.

 

Do not include the www. For a M7 Services URL.

 

Use m7services.com rather than www.m7services.com. Do include the www. for sites outside M7 Services.

 

Test all URLs, including email addresses, before including them in text.

Text Formatting

 

We use the following fonts and sizes across email and presentation slides.

 

Email Body & Signatures

 

Calibri Light 11 pt font

 

Presentation Slides

 

Avenir Light 11 pt font

Formatting for Web Content

 

Use H1 for title cases (The First Letter of Every Word is Capitalized).

 

Exceptions that do not receive capital letters, even in title case:

 

  • Short conjunctions such as “and,” “as,” “but,” “for,” “if,” “nor,” “or,” “so,” “yet”

  • Articles (“a,” “an,” “the”)

  • Short prepositions (such as “as,” “at,” “by,” “for,” “in,” “of,” “off,” “on,” “per,” “to,” “up,” “via”)

 

Use H2 is for title cases.

 

H3 and beyond are sentence case (Only the first word is capitalized, just like in a sentence).

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