A quick glossary of marketing jargon for small brands


marketing jargon for small brands to understand

If you are a creative running your own business and building a creative brand, marketing can feel overwhelming and confusing. Full of jargon and terms that you don’t understand, it can be off-putting and even demotivating.

Whether you look after your website, do your own marketing, send out newsletters and manage digital advertising or/and social media, here we share the most important terms you should know. Quick and easy to grasp, you’ll be able to understand the language in no time.


ROI – Return on investment

The value gained from an investment you make such as advertising, trade show stands, buying equipment, software, etc.

MMM – Media mix marketing

A marketing technique which spreads a marketing campaign across multiple marketing channels.

WOM – Word of mouth

Possibly the best form of generating sales – existing customers spreading the word about what you do.

SWOT  (Strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats analysis)

Every brand should do this exercise on a regular basis. The analysis reveals your business strengths – what you’re good at and what you do differently to anyone else in the market, your weaknesses – what you lack or don’t have in comparison to your competitors, the opportunities in the market and the threats that are impacting your business on day-to-day, mid- and long-term basis.

LV – Lifetime value (of customer)

This is the amount which reveals the value your business is generating from a customer over their lifetime journey with your brand.

CRM – Customer relationship management

A software that helps you track interactions with your customers at every touchpoint.

MER – Marketing efficiency ratio

MER is the total sales revenue divided by total marketing spend.

CAC – Customer acquisition cost

The amount that you have to pay to acquire a new customer.

COS – Cost of sale

COS represents all the costs that go into providing a service or product to a customer.

KPI – Key performance indicator

A value which demonstrates how effectively your business is hitting its objectives.  Usually you set goals first before you measure success. Examples include sales and marketing reports, statistics, SEO reports and more.



SEO – Search engine optimisation

Techniques that help your website rank higher in organic search results, making your website more visible to people who are looking for your brand, product, or service via search engines.

CMS – Content management system

A platform that helps you manage your website and its content.

CRO – Conversion rate optimisation

The process that helps you improve converting visitors into customers on your website using design, optimisation and testing techniques.


User interface / User experience on websites. This refers to the design part of the website and considers user experience from start to finish.

CR – Conversion rate

The percentage of a conversion either on your website or marketing campaign.

PPC – Pay per click

The amount you pay for each click on your advert.

CTR – Click-through rate

The amount of people who click on an ad or in your newsletters.

CPA – Cost per action

The total cost spent you have to make in order to receive the required actions by customers.

DDA – Data driven attribution

DDA gives credit for conversions based on how people engage with your various ads and decide to become your customers.

BR – Bounce rate

The percentage of visitors that leave a webpage without taking an action, such as clicking on a link, filling out a form, or making a purchase. The rate over 55% and higher indicates that you should look at the website’s content and make improvements.

CR – Conversion rate

The percentage of a conversion either on your website or marketing campaign.

CTA – Call to action

An action which you want your audience or customers to perform when they see your marketing campaign or content. This can be a button on your website or in newsletters such as “Buy Now” or “Download here”. Or, in any other instances such as on social media where you ask followers to “Sign up” to your newsletters in the caption.


Inside our KNOWLEDGE SHARE membership we delve into specific ideas covering each area in much more detail, giving you the tools, templates and processes which you can apply in your business straightaway. If you want to find out about it more, please click or tap here.

Written by Karolina Barnes, brand storyteller and strategist at STUDIO/ESTILA, a marketing and design studio for design & lifestyle brands, artists and interior designers.


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