Digital Advertising Glossary

A/B Testing
Comparing two versions of an advertisement, email or web page to see which one performs better.
Ad Recall
Measure of ad effectiveness in which a sample of respondents is exposed to an ad and then at a later point in time is asked if they remember the ad.
Banner Ad
Web ad typically featuring animated graphics and text available in various sizes and positions.
Measurement of the quality of an organization’s policies, products, programs, strategies, etc., and their comparison with standard measurements, or similar measurements of its peers.
Click-through Rate (CTR)
Ratio showing how often people who see your ad end up clicking it.
Content, especially that of a sensational or provocative nature, whose main purpose is to attract attention and draw visitors to a particular web page.
Content Marketing
Approach to create/distribute valuable and relevant content to attract and retain a clearly-defined audience and drive profitable customer action.
Contextual Marketing
Model in which people are served with targeted advertising based on terms they search for or their recent browsing behavior.
Conversion Rate
Percentage of users who take a desired action.
Cost Per Action (CPA)
Pricing model where the advertiser pays for each specified action. Also ratio of actions taken of those who click your ad.
Cost per Lead (CPL)
Pricing model where the advertiser pays for an explicit sign-up from a consumer interested in the advertiser’s offer. Also ratio of leads produced of those who click your ad.
Cost per Thousand Impressions (CPM)
The price of 1,000 advertisement impressions on one webpage.
Database Marketing
A form of direct marketing using databases of customers/potential customers to generate personalized communications to promote a product or service.
Direct Response
Designed to generate an immediate response from consumers, where each consumer response (and purchase) can be measured and attributed to individual ads.
Display Advertising/Display Media
Advertising on websites, including many different formats such as text, images, flash, video, and audio.
Drip Campaign/Marketing
A communication strategy that sends, or “drips,” a pre-written set of messages (usually via email) to customers or prospects over time.
Any type of business, or commercial transaction, that involves the transfer of information across the Internet.
The degree to which something is successful in producing a desired result.
Email Marketing
Directly marketing a commercial message to a group of people using email.
Often measured by observing and numbering the different consumer interactions beyond the “traditional” click for a given ad.
Growth Hacking
Process of rapid experimentation across marketing channels to identify the most effective, efficient ways to grow a business.
Hyperlocal Marketing
Marketing to a defined local geographic area, usually a small area such as a region, city, neighborhood, zip code or even a block.
Inbound Marketing
Activities that bring visitors in (e.g. providing high quality content), rather than marketers having to go out to get prospects’ attention.
KPI (Key Performance Indicators)
Set of quantifiable measures that a company or industry uses to gauge or compare performance in terms of meeting their strategic and operational goals.
Long-tail keywords
Three and four keyword phrases which are very, very specific to whatever you are selling.
Market Research
Any organized effort to gather information about target markets or customers.
Market Share
Percentage of a market (defined in terms of either units or revenue) accounted for by a specific entity.
Mobile Optimization
Process of ensuring that visitors who access your site from mobile devices have an experience optimized for the device.
Native Advertising
Material in an online publication which resembles the publication’s editorial content but is paid for by an advertiser and intended to promote the advertiser’s product.
Native Advertising
Type of advertising, usually online but feasibly elsewhere, that matches the form and function of the platform upon which it appears.
The art and science of injecting your ideas into a breaking news story so you and your ideas get noticed.
Paid Search/PPC (Pay per click)
Advertising model used to direct traffic to websites in which an advertiser pays a publisher when the ad is clicked.
Paid-Earned-Owned Media
Refers to company’s media: Paid = ads (e.g. PPC, display ads, social ads); Earned = sharing (e.g. organic social, shares, reviews); Owned = web properties (e.g. website, videos, blogs).
Online video advertisement that plays before the start of a video that has been selected for viewing.
Programmatic Advertising
Typically refers to the use of software to purchase digital advertising, as opposed to the traditional process that involves RFPs, human negotiations and manual insertion orders.
Reaching people who have previously visited your website or used your app.
Relationship Marketing
A facet of CRM that focuses on customer loyalty and long-term customer engagement rather than shorter-term goals like customer acquisition and individual sales.
Responsive Design
Web design providing optimal viewing and interaction experience—easy reading and navigation with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling—across a wide range of devices.
ROI (Return on Investment)
Measure used to evaluate the efficiency of an investment or to compare the efficiency of a number of different investments.
Search Engine Marketing (SEM)
Form of online marketing that involves the promotion of websites by increasing their visibility in search engine results pages (SERPs) through optimization and advertising.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Strategies, techniques, and tactics used to increase the amount of visitors to a website by obtaining a high-ranking placement in the search results page of a search engine (SERP).
Dividing a target market into subsets that have common needs, interests, and priorities, and then designing and implementing strategies to target them.
Social Media Marketing
Process of gaining website traffic or attention through social media sites.
Targeting/Target Customer
A group of customers a business has decided to aim its marketing efforts and ultimately its merchandise towards.
Web Analytics
Measurement, collection, analysis and reporting of web data for purposes of understanding and optimizing web usage.