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I own a company called Find My Bus Ltd that brands itself as Find My Bus.

Yesterday we sat down and had a discussion regarding the name and all came to the agreement that it didn't represent the company as we originally wanted it to. Seeing three separate words in a name that when thought of without any context sounds quite funky, we decided it would be better to merge the words into one name.

We aren't the first to do this, in fact it is becoming a trend to merge words into one name. For example: DigitalOcean, StatusCake.

In my opinion both of those names look fine because they consist of two words. However, when you do this with Find My Bus you see: FindMyBus.

Is it just me, or does it look wrong having three words merged and capitalized? Would it be better to use Findmybus or perhaps FindmyBus?

Apologies if this seems like I'm running a poll, I'm not, I just simply would like to ask users with experience in the English language which looks the most appropriate for a company name.

closed as primarily opinion-based by Dan Bron, Matt Gutting, ScotM, Ellie Kesselman, anongoodnurse May 3 '15 at 1:30

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    I understand your objective with this question, and I particularly appreciate the courtesy you extended in your final paragraph; unfortunately, there are no standards or rules of English governing company name formation or "word squishing", so this question will inevitably end up becoming a poll (ie attracting nothing but opinions, because literally nothing else could be offered). Now, if you want my opinion: FindMyBus is perfectly fine, not weird, and the best option presented. But I can't understand how "FindMyBus" could represent your company but the original "Find My Bus" couldn't – Dan Bron May 1 '15 at 11:24
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    @Dan: Another one of those downvoted questions. I do wish that some person unknown would go out and get laid instead. I am compensating. – David Pugh May 1 '15 at 11:52
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    @DavidPugh I told you yesterday: do your best not to take the voting and reputation system here to heart. You're on the internet. There are spies and assassins everywhere. – Dan Bron May 1 '15 at 12:00
  • FWIW i'm quite active on UX stackexchange and although i agree this question is phrased inappropriately as a poll, it can actually be answered objectively as a design question rather than an English question. – tohster May 1 '15 at 12:03
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    It's your company and your name -- do whatever you want. (Nothing wrong with "FindMyBus", though.) – Hot Licks May 1 '15 at 12:29
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Don't do it

Rather than answer from a poll perspective (which doesn't work well with StackExchange), here are some design considerations related to your decision:

  • Your company brand/name is communicative because, in plain English, it communicates what the company does. By removing the spaces you are reducing the readability of the name, which makes it less communicative. Doing this for the sake of appearing modern is probably a violation of design priorities for most small/medium sized companies because it's typically more important for a company name to communicate clearly what a company does than for it to be eye catching.

  • Companies that have less communicative names such as PerkinsElmer and StatusCake have the opposite problem: by placing spaces their name, customers are more likely to perceive them as words, which can actually increase confusion because the words don't mean anything. By removing the spaces, the brand can become more communicative because it makes it clearer to customers that the words aren't there to communicate meaning.

You have a nice company name. It uses three monosyllabic words (easy to say), it's communicate (represents the company well) and imperative (i.e. it's dynamic/action oriented). On top of that, it's memorable. Those are all positive things for a brand.

If you want to be perceived as more modern, use color (my preference here for various reasons), font, or a logo to accomplish this...don't remove the spaces.

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    Hmm. After reading this, and thinking about this and your comment under OP's question, maybe it would be best to migrate this question to User Experience? You're active there - how do you think it would be received on that stack? – Dan Bron May 1 '15 at 12:31
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    I'm thinking startups stackexchange may be more appropriate (is there a marketing SE?). It's not really an English question, I agree – tohster May 1 '15 at 12:37
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I'm first to the mill here, as the Norwegians say (or I was when I started out, Dan beat me to the button), but I have no specific expertise, so as he says I am just a stat in the poll. FindMyBus doesn't bother me any, and is easier to read than Findmybus (what's a mybus, any relation to a rebus?). Demographic: British wrinkly.

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(a) Squashing words together like this is not "standard English", so there really are no rules about when you can do it or how to do it. Names of companies, products, etc, quite often don't follow normal grammar rules.

(b) I'd think "FindMyBus" is better than "FindmyBus" or "FindMybus" because it clearly marks where each word begins. I don't see any advantage in highlighting the start of two of the words but not the third.

(c) I don't understand why you think squashing the words together is an improvement. What does this gain? "It is becoming a trend to merge words into one name." Maybe so. But fads like that pass. What is the latest modern thing today becomes within a few years a dated fad from the past. Like in the 1950s, car companies thought it looked cool and modern to put tail fins on cars. Today people look at those cars and say, "Oh, tail fins, must have been made in the 1950s."

(d) When you said that you felt this name "didn't represent the company", I thought you were about to say that you were going to change to a fundamentally different name, like from "Find My Bus" to "Transportation Solutions" or "International Marketing Consultants". Bear in mind that this company is your life, but to your customers, it's probably a side note. They don't care about details of your name, logo, etc. I'd bet money that if you made this change, changed all your signs and advertising and web pages and so on, and then took a survey of your customers asking what they thought about the new name, a large majority would not notice that it had changed. "It's still 'Find My Bus', right? Oh, you took out the spaces? Were there spaces there before? Huh, if you say so."

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I suspect a good copywriter or graphic designer could direct you to possible solutions.

These are just a few iDeas that popped into my head.

  • FMbus
  • find.my.bus
  • findMYbus
  • findmyBus

Consider the fact that if you do hit on a snappy design, the company name becomes an instantly recognizable logo.

EDIT

The argument that a good company name has to obey some rule of grammar or orthographic convention is nonsense. Joining two words together (squashing is not the right term) is not particularly new in the world of commerce and advertising either. In the case of high technology, it's been proven to be hugely successful too. Did iPhone cause people to tear tufts of hair because they saw what some interpreted the singular subject pronoun written in lowercase joined to a noun that started with a capital letter? Only to pedants. The name itself got noticed immediately, it was and still is a very clever logo.

The words find my bus mean exactly what they say, but on the other hand they don't tell me that it's a brand, a product, a website—anything. Consider the following which do not comply to standard spelling conventions: WordPress; FedEx (federal express); Amazon.com; MasterCard; LiVEJOURNEL; and YouTube

In the end, the OP can choose however to spell, or ‘rite’ his company's name. But don't tell him to ignore trends or character spaces in the name of plain English. There are no rules where brand names are concerned.

related:
How do you capitalize a proper noun such as “iPhone”?
How do you spell wifi / Wi-Fi / WiFi?
How Should Trademarks be Written?

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