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12 Digital Marketing Acronyms Explained

Mar 26, 2018
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Do you know the meaning of CRM? How about CMS or COS? The digital marketing industry loves its acronyms. But one thing that I have found over and over again is that many people aren't really sure of the meaning behind them.  In the video below I explain the meaning of 12 of the most popular digital marketing acronyms used today. 



Video Transcript 

One of the things that the digital marketing industry loves is acronyms. The problem is a lot of people have no idea what any of these things actually mean. We're going to break down 12 of some very common acronyms to give you a little bit better insight into what they actually mean.


The first one we're going to look at is CMS and CMS stands for content management system. Now, a content management system is exactly what it sounds like. It's a system that manages your content. This is something like WordPress where you would put your blog posts in and your website pages and you are able to go in and access and manage your content without having to mess with any website code.


The next one is COS. This stands for content optimization system. This is a little bit different than a CMS. A content optimization system is a little bit bigger. It works to really personalize your content. It also stretches into email and social media marketing and some of those other activities that you might need to do. A content optimization system would be like HubSpot's marketing software platform where you're going to be able to access a number of different pieces of content that have different purposes.


The next is going to be CPC. This is cost per click. Now, this is related to the advertising industry online and this is what you would pay per click. When you're going in and buying an AdWord it says something like 2.50 CPC. That means every time somebody clicks on that ad, it's going to cost you $2.50.


The next one is CRM. CRM stands for customer relationship management. This is a piece of software again that you would load your customers into including their names, their address, their phone numbers and you'd be able to track them, track their behavior, and how often you've been engaging with them. It really allows your whole team to be on the exact same page to know who has talked to who, when and what they've talked about.


Next will be CRO. Now, CRO stands for conversion rate optimization. Again, this is exactly what it sounds like. This is about optimizing a site or a specific email or whatever you're doing, a marketing campaign for conversion. You would usually use a software, CRO software, that would allow you to either do some A/B testing or multivariate testing where you would have different options that you would show people and find out which one is going to really help you drive conversions the best.


Next is CTA. This stands for call-to-action. Now a call-to-action could be a link. It could be a button. It could be a phone number. It could be a number of different things. But a call-to-action is really just asking your website viewer to take that next step.


Next is KPI. Now KPI stands for key performance indicator. These are what we use or what we're tracking to see whether or not our business is headed in the right direction. KPIs are typically associated with analytics or business intelligence. It's the five to seven key performance indicators, key metrics that we need to track to help us know whether or not our business or our department is headed in the right direction.


Next, PPC. Now, we talked a little bit before about cost per click and cost per click would fall under PPC. PPC is pay-per-click. It's the type of advertising that you would find on Google or some of the other search engines and even some of the other social platforms where you're really paying every time somebody takes an action on the ad that you're delivering or that you're paying to show to people. PPC is pay-per-click.


Next is RSS and this is really simple syndication. This is your blog syndication or it's in what's called an XML file. That's basically a type of file that's going to decode or code your blog content that you can then send out to a number of sites or people can subscribe and maybe get it through an email. Basically, it takes all of your content. It smushes it down into a smaller file and then you are able to send it to a number of different locations quickly and easily. That's why it's really simple syndication. The funny part is that explanation didn't seem really simple. But when we're talking about a process of getting a lot of content out very quickly, RSS is actually a pretty simple way to do it.


The next is SEO. Now, this stands for search engine optimization. This is all the work that goes into helping your site rank organically. That's in the links that are not ads on Google or Bing or some other search engine. This is not having to do with ads, but this has to do with marketing to search engines and their users in order to show up for a specific search query.


SEM is search engine marketing. Now this is the act of marketing yourself on a search engine. PPC would also be a part of SEM. You can see some of this work together. Search engine marketing really just covers all of the types of display ads, pay-per-click ads, the number of different ad revenue or ad channels that you can use in the realm of a search engine, also like YouTube ads, video ads, that sort of thing would be considered SEM.


Finally, SMM and SMM is social media marketing and this is marketing on social media.

As you can see, a lot of these acronyms, they look kind of complicated. When you spell them out, they may seem complicated but really these are just simple everyday tactics that most digital marketers are engaged with. If I didn't cover an acronym, if you've got a question about another one, please ask about it below. We would love to continue this conversation with you online. Until next time. Happy Marketing.


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Ryan Shelley, CPBI

By Ryan Shelley, CPBI

Ryan is passionate about helping companies make a more personal connection online with their customers and prospects. He is a regular contributor to Search Engine Land, the largest and most popular SEO news site on the web. His works have also been featured on the HubSpot Blog, Business2Community and by LinkedIn Marketing Solutions.

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