Key Digital Marketing Terms
Digital marketing is full of technological jargon which can be daunting if you’re new to marketing on the Internet. Here’s a quick guide to deciphering some commonly used terms.
3G – 3G or third generation is the name for the enhanced data communication services that allow video calling and rich media on mobile phones. The birth of the technology led to the setting up of mobile operator 3 in the UK.
Blogging – The act of creating a web log – a personal online web space where users can write their thoughts and anything else they want.
Cookie – A small text file on the user’s PC that identifies the user’s browser (and hence the user) so they’re ‘recognised’ when they re-visit a site. A cookie allows usernames to be stored and websites to personalise their offering.
CPA (Cost Per Action) – A metric for measuring the effectiveness of an Internet advertising campaign. Take the total cost of the campaign, divide it by the number of desired responses (actions), and the result is the cost of each customer action.
CPC (Cost Per Click) – One way to price Internet advertising. In the CPC model, the advertiser pays when a prospect takes an action and clicks an online ad, and not just when that ad is viewed.
CPM (Cost Per Thousand) – The standard unit for buying or selling Internet advertising. The ‘thousand (or M in Roman numerals in the abbreviation) stands for ‘thousand advertising impressions’, or views. To figure out what it costs to reach each individual viewer of an ad, divide the CPM rate by 1,000.
CTR (Clickthrough Rate) – The percentage of those clicking on a link from those to whom the link was displayed.
CYA (Cover Your Assets) – CYA simply means that you make a move in order to not ‘miss the party’. Use CYA to justify starting your Internet marketing effort and then use what you learn to find better reasons for maintaining and expanding your online presence.
FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) – A document provided by many websites (and sometimes email lists) with general information about a newsgroup or email list. Sometimes used with a press release to cover technical details of an announcement.
HTML (HyperText Markup Language) – The code, placed in special markers called tags, that’s added to a text document to make it function as a web page.
Hyperlink – Also called ‘Call-to-action’ links. Links in online marketing campaigns that take the reader to the next step in a process.
IE (Internet Explorer) – The most popular web browser in the world.
ISP (Internet Service Provider) – A company that provides dial-up or other kinds of access to the Internet to individuals and businesses. Online services have their own proprietary content but also serve as ISPs for their users.
JPEG (Joint Photographic Experts Group) – A standard for compressed pictures, widely used on the web. JPEG is best used for photographs and other images with many shades of colour.
Keyword – A word or phrase that potential customers type into a search engine to find a service or product.
Podcasting – Making audio or video files available over RSS to consumers for viewing or listening.
ROI (Return on Investment) – The percentage of profit or avoided costs generated by an expenditure. ROI is hard to calculate for marketing expenditures because tracing exactly which sales are the result of which marketing expenditures is very difficult. However, try to compare ROI for Internet marketing expenditures versus other marketing expenditures in order to help you allocate resources wisely.
RSS (Really Simple Syndication) – A technology that allows people to receive constantly updated content without having to revisit a website.
SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) – The process of making a site and its content highly relevant for both search engines and searchers.
SMS (Short Message Service) – The most widely available service on mobile phones other than voice. Often known as texting, it permits the sending of short messages between mobile phones, other handheld devices and even landline telephones.
Spam – Another word for unsolicited commercial email, bulk email or junk email.
TLD (Top-Level Domain) – The three letters at the end of an Internet domain name that denote the type of organisation that owns the website. Examples are .com for a commercial organisation or business or .edu for educational institutions.
URL (Uniform Resource Locator) – The technical name for a web address. The URL allows you to locate services via the Internet.
WAP or Wireless Application Protocol – WAP is an open international standard for applications that use wireless communication. The main function of WAP is to provide access to the Internet from mobile phones.
Web 2.0 – A collective name given to new technologies and consumer trends online including blogs, social networks, RSS and podcasting.
www (World Wide Web) – The number one vehicle for digital marketing efforts! (Also, www. is commonly found as a prefix to web site names.)