I don’t know what it is about the propeller heads who gravitate towards digital marketing that makes them love using and inventing jargon and abbreviations for relatively simple concepts. But I do know that they love to use them at every opportunity. The most popular time is usually in a meeting with a flock of other propeller heads, who are all trying to out abbreviate each other (you would think the meeting would be shorter in that case…).
Anyway, as a public service, I have scoured the internet to bring you a ‘field-levelling-jargon- busting-cheat-sheet’ for all things gobbledygook in the digital marketing realm:
Banner: The first widely adopted advertising medium in the digital space, banners seemed to be the easiest transition from print to digital that we could think of. Take a print ad, stick it on a website but with the added benefit of letting consumers click on it, thereby taking them to your website or similar. And subsequently a whole new industry was spawned.
Click: This is when someone actually clicks on your advert, BOOM! The click is one of the most commonly used metrics (excuse me) in Digital Marketing and is more often than not the basis of the negotiated price with the media owner.
Impression: They say that first impressions count. Well with digital every single impression counts! Simply put, an impression is when someone visits a page where your banner is loaded. Every time your banner is loaded it counts as another impression regardless if the user has seen it before or not.
Creative Matrix (CM): No, this has nothing to do with the movie; it won’t transport you to an alternate reality like Neo when he swallowed the red pill. A CM is just a chase list (a creative requirement list) for digital. Why they don’t call it a digital chase list is obvious… they’re trying to be difficult.
Next up, a few C words…
CTR: Click through Rate is the percentage of people who actually clicked on the ad versus those who saw it. The impressions divided by the number of clicks, provides a CTR.
CPC: Cost per Click is the investment per click. The cost paid for the campaign divided by the number of clicks equals a CPC.
CPM: Cost per 1000 impressions.
CPL: Cost per Like (cost per Facebook follower or like) or Cost per Lead (how much you spent converting someone into a bona fide lead for your business).
CTA: A Call to Action can be a number of things on an ad that asks the reader to engage or perform an action. Phrases like ‘click now to win’, ‘book here’, ‘enter now’ etc are often used as a CTA.
SEO: Search Engine Optimisation is an industry all on its own. In a nutshell, if you are a pumpkin wholesaler in Pofadder, SEO will help you get to the top of the list when someone searches ‘pumpkins in Pofadder’ on Google . This is something either your web developer or a specialist company will do. You do not pay Google for this.
Paid Search aka PPC (Pay per Click): This is where you pay Google to have your ad featured as high as possible on the list of any relevant searches. The process works on a bidding system for key words which, like SEO, are topics for another article.
SEM: Search Engine Marketing encompasses both SEO and Paid Search.
Cookie: Not like the ones your mother used to make, these are devious little pieces of code that hide on your computer, collecting data about you and your internet habits before reporting back to the mother ship you picked them up on. This is used to build individual profiles that allow advertisers to better target consumers, amongst many other applications.
ROS / RON: Run of Site or Run of Network is a media planning term meaning that the banner will run randomly across the chosen website or network of websites rather than in one specific location.
Remarketing: Did you ever notice that after checking out a particular pair of shoes on Zando those same shoes started following you all over the internet? That’s because Zando realised that they almost had a sale so they dropped a cookie on you and kept bugging you across all their RON buys till you bought that pair of shoes. Clear your cookies on your browser if you want to avoid temptation… or just buy the shoes.
IO: Insertion Order – a formal contractual order to book an advertising campaign, why they don’t they just call it a contract or CE like everyone else is beyond me.
Above the Fold: The assumption is that people are lazy and easily distracted. If your ad appears in the top section of a website that loads before you have to scroll down then you are ‘above the fold’. Ads appearing below the fold often have less clicks leading to a lower CTR and possibly a higher CPC.
Well, I think that’s enough for the first instalment. There is way too much jargon around to fit into just one article. Next time we will delve a little deeper and get a little more technical. In the meantime, hopefully you’ll be a little less lost in meetings and a little braver in the face of those propeller heads.
TTYS (talk to you soon).
For these and other definitions look at the Glossary section of our website – under the INFO tab.
Marino Sigalas is a media strategist at The MediaShop. This post was first published in the company newsletter.
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