Cheat Sheet: Advertising Terms Made Simple

Meredith Las Vegas About The Author

July 21, 2020 at 8:55 AM


Whether you're launching your first advertising campaign or your hundredth, it's critical to understand familiar advertising terms, what they mean, and how they impact your campaign. From the latest trends to established advertising methods, an ongoing understanding of those terms can make it easier to adapt your advertising efforts. You can create better marketing creative and improve your understanding of the results, enabling you to produce more effective campaigns in the future. 

  1. KPI: Key performance indicator, or the measurement used to quantify the overall success of your campaign
  2. ROI: The return on your investment, or the amount you make in return for your advertising spend. Usually, ROI is expressed as the benefit of the investment divided by the amount of the investment.
  3. Impressions: Impressions are the number of times an ad appears on a consumer's screen. Impressions do not require any action on the part of the consumer, and you may not know whether or not the user has actually taken note of the ad.
  4. GRPs: Gross rating point, a standard unit of measurement often used in advertising, measures how many people within an intended audience may have seen your campaign. GRP is calculated by the percentage of the target audience reached times the number of impressions per audience member.
  5. CPM: Cost per mille, or cost per thousand, is the cost per thousand views of an advertisement.
  6. CPP: Cost per point, a cost-efficiency measurement that allows you to compare the  between types of advertising medium. CPP is calculated by dividing media costs by GRP.
  7. Spots: Advertising commercials on television or OTT. Usually, spots last an average of 30 to 60 seconds.
  8. VO: A voice over used in the audio of a commercial.
  9. Reach: The number of people exposed to a specific ad over the course of a campaign.
  10. Frequency: The number of times a consumer is exposed to a specific ad.
  11. Product Placement: Your product or logo featured as a subliminal message in a movie or television show.
  12. Integrated Segments: Content based, interview style segments that allow advertisers to promote their products or services in a story like fashion. 
  13. Display Ads: Also known as “banner ads,” are a form of graphic ads embedded into a web page, typically using a combination of static/ animated images and text to convey an advertising message. These ads are embedded specifically on other websites, often those that are utilized heavily by your target audience.
  14. Pre-Roll Video: An ad that appears before the video or content that the user intends to view.
  15. ROA: Run of audience, these ads can run across all media platforms.
  16. Rich Media Ads: A digital ad that includes an enhanced feature like video, audio, or other elements that encourage the viewer to interact and engage with the content.
  17. OTT: Over-the-top television was originally used to describe devices that go "over" a traditional television setup. OTT is now used to refer primarily to streaming services.
  18. Email Blast: An email sent to a large group of recipients, usually one that has not been segmented.
  19. Programmatic Media Buying: A digital technology that allows advertisers to buy ad space automatically target consumers based on certain metrics obtained through algorithms.
  20. Retargeting: Targeting a customer who has already interacted with your brand or visited your website.
  21. SEO: Search engine optimization, or improving your website's visibility for search engines.
  22. SEM: Search engine marketing, or creating ads designed specifically for search engines.
  23. Keywords: The words your brand focuses on in order to raise search results for terms customers use most often when searching for information in your industry.
  24. Attribution: Determining the user outcomes that led to the outcome you wanted from an advertisement.
  25. Bounce Rate: How many customers leave after viewing a specific page of a website, rather than continuing their interaction with the brand.
  26. CTR: Click-through rate, or the number of clicks your ad has achieved versus impressions.
  27. Ad Tags: HTML code inserted into the ad. These facilitate ad placement and aid in retargeting, making ads visible to customers who have visited a specific page.
  28. URL: The address of a webpage.
  29. IP Address: The number assigned to a device, by which other devices can identify it.
  30. Backlink: A link back to your site from another source. Some brands build backlinks by partnering with other local businesses or creating content specifically for other websites.
  31. Social: Social media, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, and other popular social media sites.
  32. Engagement: Interaction with a brand. Engagement on social media might include likes, clicks, or shares.
  33. Cause Marketing: Marketing done that focuses on a specific cause that benefits the community as a whole.

By having detailed knowledge of top advertising terms, you can better understand your marketing analytics and the information provided by your media partner for your advertising efforts. If you're not familiar with a specific term, ask questions to ensure that you fully understand what your marketing efforts are accomplishing and how they can benefit your business. 

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