Getting It Right:
Increase Your Credibility With Scientific Names

Your prospects in the health-products market fancy themselves to be experts, so it's crucial to "get it right" when using scientific names.

Let's take the alga from the AWAI copywriting course final assignment as an example: Hydrilla verticillata.

The first word in the name (the genus of the plant or animal) is ALWAYS capitalized.

The second word in the name (the species) is ALWAYS lowercase.

Both words in the name are ALWAYS italicized (which, unfortunately, we cannot do here because of our email limitations).

One final tip: Even though scientific names may be complicated, SPELL THEM CORRECTLY. Double-check the spelling every time they come up in your copy.

[Source: Chicago Manual of Style]

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The Professional Writers’ Alliance

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Published: December 6, 2004

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