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Q. My question relates specifically to the term “world-class” and how it is used at my firm. Essentially, the term “world-class” is core to our value proposition, our products and deliverables, and our marketing material. Since this term is very special, we wonder if it is okay to capitalize in the middle of a sentence: “In order for a firm to achieve World-class performance . . .” Our inclination is to always capitalize the W and not the C. Finally, can we exercise our judgment, and just decide how it should appear in all instances regardless of common standards, given the special nature of this term to our business?
A. Chicago editors would not approve of capping a regular word midsentence (even such a very special one), but we’re not editing marketing copy. CMOS is not primarily aimed at that sort of content, and it’s not always appropriate for marketers to apply Chicago guidelines. You might put together a house style sheet so everyone’s on the same page with signature style decisions like the one you cite.