Every day, the savvy marketer references a range of industry-specific jargon. To break down this jargon, we created the marketing automation glossary. A page to bookmark and fall back on if a term crosses your path that you’re just not sure of.
Whether you’re a newbie or a marketing automation veteran, this one-stop marketing definition shop will evolve as the industry does. Reference this list and add each term into your vocabulary and your marketing automation strategy. We’ve not only provided the definitions but added in examples, resources and even some hot tips.
A/B split testing
The process of running simultaneous experiments across multiple pages to determine which one performs the best. Marketers use to compare two or more elements within a website or piece of content such as copy, email content, landing pages and lead ads. This testing tool uses statistical analysis to highlight which variant received the highest conversion rate.
A real-time summary of actions a user takes on a website or app. It highlights the user's behavior by tracking cookies and aggregating data into a visual feed. Activity feeds give marketers an overview of the interactions and communication users have with a website and may take the form of announcements, messages, login times, content shares, just to name a few.
A strategy used by content marketers and bloggers to promote products, services or ideas. Affiliate marketers generate passive income by earning commission from advertising the brand of an individual or company. This marketing tactic helps companies drive sales and generate revenue. Success is measured based on performance metrics like clicks, sales, or registrations.
API (Application Programming Interface)
A set of protocols and specific standards of communication used for building software applications. It determines how components of a software application should interact. By interpreting data and presenting understandable information, an API enables the connection and communication between two different programs.
For example, the Ortto REST API allows companies to send contacts to Ortto from an external app like WooCommerce or Pipedrive. Both software platforms speak to one another, transferring data and other forms of information.
AI (Artificial Intelligence)
An area of computer science that creates, programs, and designs intelligent machines to work, react, and “think” like humans. Through processing large amounts of data and patterns, AI teaches computers to manage and achieve specific tasks including speech recognition, learning, planning and problem-solving.
The process of interpreting information from small and large datasets. Information is collected from channels like websites, landing pages, or social media channels. From those channels, meaningful patterns are extracted from the recorded data. Marketing analytics uses mathematics, statistics, predictive modeling and machine learning to produce insights that drive business decisions and increase customer understanding.
Annual Contract Value (ACV)
You may also see it as Total Contract Value (TCV). It is best described as the total dollar amount the average customer generates for the company annually. Or how much that customer is worth to your company.
This can be especially helpful if you have a monthly subscription plan or a tiered-price plan.
Annual Recurring Revenue (ARR)
If your company works with an annual payment plan, then using the metric ARR - Annual Recurring Revenue is recommended. This metric will allow you to view the revenue generated per year.
ARR is calculated by adding all the annual values of your subscription revenue. Generally speaking, it is the sum of all new subscriptions (including all plan upgrades or expansions) minus the customers who have left your subscription, or canceled.
Average Revenue Per User (ARPU)
This SaaS metric shows the profitability of your product by seeing the amount of revenue generated per client or subscriber. This will provide an easy way to track the continuous annual growth of your company.
Say your total revenue is $40,000 per month, and you have a total of 500 subscribers. This will mean your ARPU is $80.
Note: make sure you define the time period when using this calculator. The most commonly used is monthly.
Average Revenue Per Account (ARPA)
This is the average monthly recurring revenue (MRR) per account, providing a more granular look at your company's profitability. It's calculated by dividing the total MRR by the number of total accounts.
This may look similar to ARPU, however ARPU is the average per user. The difference being if your platform allows for multiple users within the account. For example, different Ortto plans will allow for a number of users. ARPA measures only the number of accounts rather than the amount of users.
Marketing attribution is the process of evaluating the different customer touchpoints, to know which channels or tactics are contributing to sales and conversions. This helps marketers to understand which channels to stop using, optimize or scale up.
The promotion of one business's products or services to another business. B2B marketing is orientated towards a business, where buyers or end users make purchase decisions based on price and profit — not emotions. It involves forging strong relationships with businesses to gain lasting customers and product promoters.
The promotion of a business’s products or services to consumers. B2C marketing is orientated towards individuals who make purchase decisions based on emotional and monetary triggers. It involves creating marketing campaigns that grab a consumer’s attention by offering immediate value and solving a pain point.
Bottom of the funnel (BOFU) content
Content that persuades prospects to make a purchase or take a specific action. At this stage of the funnel, a customer becomes a buyer. Marketers create content that accelerates deals, instills brand confidence and positions their brand above competitors. The delivery of bottom of the funnel content is actionable, assertive and is typically given to a sales team to directly market products or services.
Website bounce rate: a metric that measures the percentage of customers who enter a website and leave without triggering an action or event (such as clicking a call-to-action or interacting with a secondary page). Bounce rate metrics show the percentage of visitors who leave or “bounce” directly off a web page.
A low bounce rate indicates that a website is engaging and interesting to visitors. A high bounce rate indicates that visitors are disinterested in a website, which may appear as boring, off-putting or did not meet their expectations from the original clicked source.
Email bounce rate: a metric that measures the rate of undelivered emails that “bounce” back from a recipient's inbox. The reason for this “bounce” may be from an invalid email address, which can be easily rectified.
The burn rate is the amount of money the SaaS company is losing over a period of time, usually represented monthly. This includes total expenses - marketing, R&D, cost of goods even general administration.
This is one SaaS metric that is much more relevant to startups, as they are not generating any money and simply “burning” through their cash reserve. The burn rate can indicate what the company's’ overall lifespan will be.
There are two different types of burn rate - Net Burn Rate and Gross Burn Rate.
Your Gross burn rate is the sum of your company’s expenses over a specific period of time.
Your Net burn rate is the sum of your company’s revenue minus the total expenses. A negative net burn rate occurs when the company is spending more than it is earning.
CAC (customer acquisition cost)
A metric that calculates the amount of money spent on acquiring each customer. CAC looks at how much revenue is generated from customers and how much money is needed to achieve that revenue. This metric provides insight into the value of each customer and helps determine the profitability and viability of a company.
To measure the CAC, divide the total cost associated with acquisition by the total number of new customers. This cost is calculated within a given time period to show the change in customer value.
For example, if marketing spends $100 on advertising in a year and acquires 100 new customers, then the CAC equals $1.00.
A metric that measures the number of customers who leave a company during a given period of time (typically a quarter). The lower your churn rate, the higher your customer retention.
A churn rate is calculated by looking at the number of customers a business has at the end of a quarter and dividing that value by the number of customers a business started with at the beginning of the quarter.
For example, if a company had 1,000 customers at the beginning of January and lost 50 by March, their churn rate would be 0.5% percent.
Also referred to as growth loop marketing. It’s a form of marketing that relies on customer data and insights to create campaigns focused on improving ROI (return on investment). To better understand the customer and deliver valuable content, sales and marketing teams work together to understand how a prospect becomes a lead and how a lead becomes a customer. Closed-loop marketing shines a light on how marketing campaigns acquire and convert leads, as well as what content has the most significant impact on ROI.
CLV (customer lifetime value)
A metric that measures the profit a business makes on its customers. CLV predicts the total revenue a business will make from a single customer. It helps companies make reasonable marketing, sales and product decisions.
To determine CLV, first, find the average customer lifespan by calculating the average purchase value a customer makes. Divide that value by one, minus the average purchase frequency rate. Then, subtract the average customer lifespan from the average cost of acquisition.
For example, the average purchase value is $50, the average purchase frequency rate is 10% and the average cost of acquisition is $15. The customer lifespan is calculated by $50 / (1 - 0.1) = $55.56. The CLV is calculated by $55.56 - $15 = $40.56.
A strategic marketing technique focused on producing and consistently distributing useful, relevant and engaging content. It focuses on a long-term strategy by building solid customer relationships that educate the customer across digital and physical platforms. Content marketers inform their target audience by storytelling through blog articles, eBooks, videos, webinars, podcasts, etc.
The process of mapping personas alongside the buyer journey to deliver the most optimal content at every stage of the marketing funnel. Marketers use analytics and customer research to create content maps that highlight what content needs to be produced at each stage of the buying cycle. To tailor and personalize content for specific personas, marketers focus on the three phases of the buying cycle: awareness, consideration and decision.
The process where “anonymous” website visitors become “known” leads. It refers to the sequence of steps and actions a prospect may take to convert into a lead. A conversion path could start when a user conducts a search on Google and is led to a website. There might be one or 10 steps a user takes before they reach a desired action like making a purchase. As users come to the end of the path, they transform into “known” leads and marketers can categorize those leads and send them relevant content.
A conversion rate is the performance measurement of any desired outcome and can be attributed to actions like clicking a purchase button or filling out a webform. It looks at the percentage of users achieving conversion goals that ultimately increase the growth of a company. Similarly, conversion rate optimization (CRO) is the process of improving conversion rates by looking at ways to encourage users to take action.
CPA (cost per action)
A metric that measures the amount of money a business spends on pushing users to perform a specific action. In CPA marketing, affiliate commissions are dependent on high conversion rates. These rates are measured when users take a desired action like making a purchase, filling in a form or signing up for a webinar.
CPL (cost per lead)
A metric that measures a company’s marketing spend against the total number of new leads. CPL is part of performance-based advertising and is used to determine the effectiveness of marketing campaigns that are focused on generating leads. Marketers use this metric to give each lead a dollar figure that determines how much money is needed to generate leads.
Customer Retention Cost (CRC)
The cost of retaining the existing customer. Once you have your customer on board it’s vital to continue to nurture them. This can come in an array of different activities from training, customer marketing and service support - all of which will contribute to the business costs that need to be considered when calculating a CRC.
Businesses that dedicate time and resources to retaining existing customers at different life cycle points find that scalability goals are far more easily reached.
No one wants to have the red carpet rolled out only when there are a few weeks left before the expiration of a contract term.
CRM (customer relationship management)
A system that manages a company’s interaction with prospects, leads and customers throughout the customer lifecycle. The goal of a CRM is to help sales and marketing teams streamline workflows and stay connected to their customers. A CRM stores all types of customer information such as email, mobile numbers, purchase history and buying preferences.
A marketing message that elicits an immediate response from a lead or customer, persuading them to perform a desired action. A CTA appears in many shapes and forms on a website, landing page, email or advertisement.
The sole purpose of a CTA is to grab the user’s attention and persuade them to click and engage. CTAs use buttons, microcopy, images and web links to promote top of the funnel content and attract users to explore more about a company’s products or services. CTA examples include learn more, download the eBook, schedule a trial.
CTR (click-through rate)
A metric that measures the number of clicks received on an ad, email or call-to-action. The rate is shown as a percentage and reveals how successful a piece of content is at engaging an audience.
To measure a CTR, calculate the number of clicks an ad received, and divide that by the number of times the ad was displayed. For example, if an ad has 10 clicks and 100 impressions, the CTR is 10%.
A predetermined field that uses specific criteria to capture data from leads and customers. Within marketing automation software, custom activities trigger journeys based on the behavior and actions a customer takes with a website, web page, email or SMS.
Customer data platform
Software that collects and organizes customer data from a range of different touch points on a customers’ digital journey into one platform. This real-time data creates individual, centralized customer profiles, and then saves its very own copy of this data.
The data can be further segmented in an unlimited number of ways, and these segments can be used to develop personalized marketing campaigns.
A pathway that visualizes the entire experience a customer has with a brand. It tracks the movement of users through the marketing and sales funnel, documenting each touchpoint and interaction. A customer journey looks at the moment a person first engages with a brand to the stage where they make their first purchase and beyond.
The process of nurturing and re-engaging existing customers so they continue on the buying journey. This may mean nurturing a customer to purchase more products or continue their subscription.
A customer retention rate looks at how successful a company is at keeping its paying customers over a certain period of time. By analyzing the rate of customer retention, a company can reduce the number of customer withdrawals. Increasing the customer retention rate leads to improving the lifetime value of customers.
Daily Active Users (DAU)
This has been known to be a bit of a vanity SaaS metric, however both MAU and DAU both provide great insight on the ‘health’ of your business.
Before you start measuring your DAU and MAU, it’s important to define what an active user looks like for your company. Your active user needs to fit in with your SaaS product and its capability. For example, simply logging on may be too generic as a reporting metric, so your active user may be defined as the user completing a task, creating a report or sharing with friends.
Daily Active Users are simply the total unique users each day. The DAU calculation includes new users who have used the SaaS product for the first time (downloaded or subscribed) plus existing users who log in to use the product.
It’s important to note that DAU should not be used as a standalone metric. Look at it in combination with other SaaS metrics, to see the engagement levels of users and how valuable your users are finding the product.
The strategy of using customer data to optimize the marketing strategy for your customers. Done correctly, you will be able to predict the needs, wants and future behaviors of your customers.
Email deliverability describes the likelihood of an email accepted by a receiving mail server will be placed in the recipient’s inbox (high deliverability), filtered to the spam folder, or withheld from the recipient altogether (low deliverability).
The goal of email deliverability is for an email to land in a recipient’s inbox where it is more likely to be viewed.
Desktop as a Service (DaaS)
Imagine having the flexibility to connect to a virtual desktop on any device from anywhere. This is DaaS, it’s a form of virtual computing to provide cloud work spaces to remote users.
The Infrastructure, network resources and cloud storage are all hosted by the cloud services provider. It is then streamed through a virtual desktop to the end user’s device. All the data and applications can then be accessed through the web browser or other software.
Amazon workspace and Azure are both popular DaaS platforms.
A direct marketing strategy that sends a set of emails to customers with the aim of closing a deal. Depending on the behaviors or actions a customer takes with a brand, a sequence of emails are automated to encourage them to perform a desired action. Typically, drip campaigns target customers who have entered a lead nurturing journey.
Personalized content that displays different messages on a website or in an email. This form of content is created based on known information about each visitor. Dynamic content aims to match user preferences by using data to deliver personalized pages that are unique to each user. For example, if a first-time visitor navigates to an online store, the landing page may display more top of the funnel content to convert them into leads. Dynamic content displays a variation of content based on a user's criteria — whether that be industry, job title, gender or previous behaviors.
A digital book, either long or short form that can be read on a desktop or mobile platform. An eBook is typically a longer piece of content (more than a blog post or whitepaper) and is used as a lead magnet to capture leads and place them into a lead nurturing journey.
The use of email to send direct messages to customers with the aim of promoting a company’s products or services. Email marketing goes beyond surface-level communication and helps a brand develop customer relationships, build audience trust and increase engagement.
A metric that tracks the level of interaction users have on a specific piece of content. Engagement rates are tracked on customer journeys, social media posts, email deliveries, landing pages, call-to-action buttons and more. Measuring an engagement rate helps companies analyze the success of their content over competitors.
A style of content that has a lifetime value for readers. Described as timeless, the content piece may discover and engage a reader at the time of publishing or even after five or 10 years. Evergreen content includes high-quality information that is easily searchable and valuable, making it a powerful resource for SEO.
Facebook retargeting ads help you reconnect with users who have already interacted with your brand in some way (on or off Facebook). For example, users who have shared their email with you as leads or customers, follow or engage with any of your social media channels.
Exclusive online content that’s only accessible after a user submits their personal information like an email, name or phone number. The purpose of gated content is to generate leads and encourage customers to take further action with a brand, product or service. This type of content can appear in the form of an eBook, whitepaper, guide, report, case study or product demo.
The practice of advertising and delivering content to consumers based on their geographical location. Geo-targeting can be achieved by capturing data like a user’s IP address and using that data to distribute more relevant content to customers. For example, marketers may use geo-targeting to leverage regional insights and trends to advertise content at a local level.
Google’s advertising platform where advertisers bid on specific keywords to promote their ads, website or web pages in Google’s search results. The platform uses a pay per click (PPC) bidding service, where advertisers have the choice to reach people through the Google Search Network and the Google Display Network.
Using Google Ads, marketers can reach users who are actively searching for their keywords. For example, a marketer may bid for the keyword “marketing blog” with the aim of their ad appearing in Google search every time a user types those keywords into Google’s search engine.
In short, growth hacking is a type of marketing focused on creative strategies that acquire, activate and retain customers using the least amount of time and resources. Growth hackers favor tactics and channels where perfect attribution can be guaranteed, so they can undoubtedly see where the lead has come from, and gain fast data into whether the experiment should be stopped or scaled up.
The process of experimenting with marketing activity, messaging or strategy to ensure it falls in line with the ever-changing motives and preferences of your customers, regardless of their position in the customer journey.
Unlike a traditional marketing strategy, growth marketing is focused on the entire acquisition funnel, fueling company growth by acquiring, activating, converting and retaining customers.
An unconventional form of inbound marketing that focuses on using low-cost tactics to advertise or promote a product or service. Unlike traditional marketing, guerilla marketing uses a limited budget to adopt a more intimate and personal interaction with customers.
For example, marketers may hand out physical flyers on the street to promote their business or leverage the audience of an event by setting up a booth or stall.
A heatmap is a graphical and two-dimensional representation of user interaction data on a web page. It shows how a user behaves on a specific web page and how they interact with content, images, links, or CTA’s.
Data is displayed through a color-coded system highlighting the areas of a page that receive the most attention from users. Heatmaps indicate where users click on a page, where they’re most likely to hover their cursor and how far down a page they scroll.
Messages displayed directly to users who are active within a mobile application. These messages appear to users as popup notifications and are triggered based on a user’s interactions. In-app messages use text and images to push users to perform a desired action like making a purchase.
A marketing strategy that attracts prospects to a website without a marketer outwardly pushing products or manually sourcing leads. Inbound marketing distributes valuable content that is aligned with customer interests with the ultimate goal of moving leads through the marketing/sales funnel.
A marketing strategy where an influencer promotes a brand, product or service. Influencers foster an authentic and trusted conversation with their audience to influence their follower’s perception of a brand. Companies use influencer marketing to enrich their messaging and target a specific and engaged audience.
Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)
Unless you’re part of a development team or working closely with one, then IaaS won’t really register high on your day-to-day knowledge.
IaaS provides the basic infrastructure needed to support the performance of SaaS and PaaS. It supplies resources — compute, storage and networking — needed for the running of operating systems or applications, all through cloud computing.
The process of connecting two systems by bringing data and information into the one product. Real-time data, updates and alerts are automatically synced between both systems, giving the user a more robust and flexible experience. For example, companies can import or sync information from their CRM into their marketing automation software.
A metric that shows the number of times a piece of content is displayed, regardless of whether it‘s clicked on or not. For example, when advertising on Facebook, analytics will display a number of impressions your ad received within a given period of time.
A form of marketing that helps SEO specialists gain top placement in Google search listings, firstly by determining the keywords that are most relevant to a business then bidding on those words to position ads and content on the first page of Google search results. Choosing the right words gives companies the potential to reach the right people who are actively searching for their product or service.
KPI (key performance indicator)
A measurement that calculates a performance over a period of time. A KPI evaluates the success of a company or employee and how effective they are at achieving key business objectives. This metric helps executives, investors and managers to gauge the overall progress of a company, team or individual.
A standalone web page optimized to convert visitors into leads and customers. A landing page is used as a lead generation tool with the ultimate goal of conversion. It encourages visitors to engage and submit their information like an email address or mobile number.
For example, when a user clicks a Google ad or Facebook ad, they will “land” on a specific landing page that will initiate a conversion pathway.
A qualified prospect (potential customer) that demonstrates buying behavior by showing interest in a company’s products or services. Buying behavior is decided by the qualities a lead exhibits, and these qualities are pre-determined by the sales or marketing team.
The action when your website visitors convert into leads. This typically happens using lead capture forms, landing pages, pop ups, surveys, and through ecommerce checkout pages.
Lead generation focuses on targeting prospects who are most likely to become customers through acquisition tactics like gated content, targeted ads, landing pages, events, social media, and promotions.
The process of managing leads through the entire marketing funnel. This includes lead acquisition, generation, tracking, scoring and nurturing. The process helps track and manage prospects and filter out genuine buyers from those who are uninterested.
Assigning a numerical score or points to a lead based on certain characteristics, or behavior. These can include professional information they’ve shared with you, how they engaged with your website or brand.
Lead scoring helps your sales and marketing teams stay on the same page when prioritizing and communicating with leads
The process of applying hyperlinks from other websites or web pages to an individual page. Link building increases a site’s authority by driving referral traffic from other web pages. Search engines like Google give authority to sites that have more backlinks, ranking them higher on search results pages. SEO specialists and content marketers create link building strategies to promote a company’s content, products or services.
The practice of differentiating and categorizing contacts based on characteristics like customer type, interest, demographics, location and behavior. List segmentation separates a company’s customer base into similar segments, which enables marketers to create and deliver personalized content.
A marketing tool used by sales and support teams to provide customers with product or service assistance. Live chat software enables a company to have real-time conversations with its customers. This conversation occurs through a pop-up widget or window that's installed on a website or specific page. Giving customers the option of live chat encourages them to submit their queries or concerns.
An application of artificial intelligence that analyzes and learns from data to identify patterns and build predictions with limited human assistance. By learning and acting just like a human would, machine learning removes the manual labor of data analysis.
Software that enables marketers to automate repetitive tasks like sending emails, following up with leads, tracking insights and creating customer journeys. From startups to established organizations, companies of all sizes take advantage of marketing automation. It’s an essential tool for any marketer who is creating multi-channel content for an increasing user base.
A visual display of your marketing performance. Marketing dashboards are a place to keep track of core marketing metrics with top level marketing data consolidated onto one page. With all your data in one place, every dashboard will offer transparency of ‘what’s really happening’.
A representation of a customer’s journey throughout the buying cycle. The funnel shows how a customer moves from prospect to buyer. The traditional funnel is defined by the four-letter acronym: AIDA (Awareness, Interest, Decision and Action). However, today the funnel is not represented as a linear journey, but as a journey defined by customer experiences.
A targeted marketing strategy delivering customized and localized content to customers. Marketing personalization is a critical marketing strategy for increasing conversion rates, engaging customers and producing valuable and relevant content.
Marketing technology stack
A combination of technology-based tools leveraged by marketers to execute and improve their marketing activities. A marketing technology stack aims to optimize processes and procedures followed by marketers on a daily basis. These tools include social media platforms, marketing automation software, CRM systems and more.
A coding statement written in HTML that uses keywords to summarize the content displayed on a web page. Search engines use meta tags as an index of information to rank and display content. These tags are invisible to viewers and serve as a data building blog that helps content marketers present the most important pieces of information.
Middle of the funnel (MOFU) content
The stage of the funnel where a customer has identified a problem and is looking for a solution. A customer might already be aware of a company’s brand and may have even interacted with its website. Marketers create high value and gated content to give leads the final push towards conversion. This content includes case studies, eBooks, whitepapers and more.
An omnichannel marketing strategy optimized for mobile users. Mobile marketing reaches users on their smartphones or tablets. Content is designed specifically for mobile apps and includes SMS marketing, video ads, mobile pay and mobile apps. Mobile marketing sends customer-centric messages that are personalized and location-based. Typically, this form of marketing is part of a larger customer journey strategy.
Monthly Active Users (MAU)
Monthly Active Users are unique, new users who have opened and engaged with your product over the last month (30-day period). If they have signed up for the first time, but use the product multiple times over the month, they are only counted once.
MAU provides clarity over being able to attract and retain subscribers during a 30-day period.
MRR (monthly recurring revenue)
A metric that measures the predictable and recurring revenue of a business. It gives a business insight into what revenue they can expect each month. MRR helps a company determine its health and the rate of growth or decline. A subscription-based business can calculate its MRR by adding the payment received from each customer per month.
For example, if a company has 100 customers on a $10 monthly subscription plan and 20 on a $40 plan, MRR is calculated by multiplying the following: 100 x $10= $1,000 and 20 x $40= $800. And adding the following: $1,000 + $800 = $1,800.
A marketing strategy that engages audiences across every communication channel available — digital or otherwise. These channels include website, email, mobile phone, application, social media, television, direct mail, storefront and outdoor ad. Marketers incorporate multi-channel strategies within their customer journeys to target customers wherever they may be.
A testing method used to analyze the performance of multiple variations of a web page, email or other pieces of content. The results determine the best combination based on open and click rates, views, impressions and other metrics. Marketers use multivariate testing to test a hypothesis and make changes to their website or marketing material. Unlike A/B testing, multivariate testing analyzes the performance of more than two variables.
A form of online advertising that displays ads natively within a media platform. The ads match the format and function of the platform to give users a non-disruptive viewing experience. Native advertising uses paid media to sponsor content, products and services. Social platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, offer native advertising to help companies distribute content that feels similar to the environment of the editorial feed.
NPS (net promoter score)
A metric that calculates the customer’s overall experience with a product or service. It’s used to measure customer loyalty and can also be used to predict company success and growth. The NPS consists of an index that ranges from 0 to 10. The higher the score, the more likely a customer is to recommend a brand to a friend or colleague. Respondents of an NPS are categorized into three groups: promoters (9-10), passives (7-8) and detractors (0-6).
Omnichannel marketing puts the customer at the center of the marketing strategy to create a seamless, high-quality customer experience that occurs within and between channels (e.g. email, SMS, in-app messaging, website, social media, etc.). Omnichannel enables data synchronization and merges all sales and marketing efforts to break down boundaries between channels and create a single experience for the customer.
An email marketing metric that calculates the percentage rate of recipients who open a delivered email. An open rate indicates the engagement and interest of customers within an email list. To calculate the open rate, divide the amount of email opens by the total number of emails delivered.
For example, if 100 emails were delivered and 50 were opened, the open rate would be 50%.
A form of permission marketing that requests approval from customers before sending follow-up communication like emails, promotions and articles. Marketers give customers full disclosure on what they will receive before sending information. Opt-in marketing removes the frustration customers may experience when they receive unsolicited communication. On the flip side, customers can also request to opt-out, canceling the communication they receive from a company.
An aggressive marketing strategy that pushes messages onto customers through advertising, trade shows, cold calling, seminars and direct mail. Outbound marketing seeks prospects by sending an untargeted, generic message to a large group of people. Typically, this form of marketing is expensive and delivers lower conversion results than inbound marketing.
Performance marketing metrics
Metrics that measure the progress of a business, a team or a specific marketing strategy. Some of these metrics include pay per click (PPC), pay per lead (PPL), pay per sale (PPS) and key performance indicator (KPI). These metrics are collected and analyzed to monitor how successful a business is at attracting new leads, nurturing customers and marketing new and existing products or services.
A marketing strategy that requests approval from customers before sending follow-up communication like emails, promotions and articles. To engage in permission marketing, marketers use applications to ask users if they would like to receive or opt-in to a product, service, content subscription, etc.
Personalized marketing is customizing your content and messaging to suit segmented groups of customers based on the data you’ve collected from them. This can include interests, demographic, shopping preferences, purchase history, and more. Your customers will receive tailored and relevant content via email, digital ads, sms and other through other channels.
A fictional representation of a group of users who share any combination of demographics, behavior patterns, interests and buying decisions. Personas help companies develop marketing strategies that focus on targeting particular audiences or customers. Marketers also use personas to create content maps that align with the wants, needs and desires of a particular customer group.
Platform as a Service (PaaS)
PaaS provides a foundation for developers to build, host and deploy consumer-facing applications. Developers don’t need to worry about storage or management when using a PaaS product.
Product-led growth strategy
Product-led growth (PLG) uses the product itself as the main vehicle to grow and retain your customer base. In a product-led go-to-market strategy, marketing activities will drive people to sign up for your product’s freemium or free trial offering, while sales will step in to help strong product-qualified leads convert, negotiate terms with enterprise-level customers, or identify new business opportunities.
Companies with a PLG function include: Ortto, Figma, Zapier and Slack, just to name a few.
Product qualified leads (PQLs) are customers who have used your product and taken specific actions that signify they understand the value of the product. Essentially, they have experienced their ‘aha moment’ and are most likely going to be ready to commit to your product.
A potential customer that exhibits similar qualities, traits and characteristics of a customer. For each company, a prospect must fit a predetermined criterion. For example, they must fit a target market, have authority over purchasing decisions and the financial capacity to make a purchase.
Return On Advertising Spend (ROAS)
The name can give it away, but this SaaS marketing metric measures the generated revenue for every dollar spent on advertising.
This metric provides an overall look at the monetary success of the advertising campaign as a whole. It can get a little tricky in finding the exact amount of revenue earned per ad campaign, especially these days where attributing sales to specific ads and marketing channels will require additional data crunching.
ROI (return on investment)
A metric that measures the profitability of an investment, whether that be a product, service or marketing campaign. ROI is used as a way to gauge the performance of a business over a certain period of time.
To calculate the ROI, find the net profit of an investment and divide that profit by the money spent on investing. Then, times the total value by 100.
For example, if a marketer invests $1,000 in a campaign and receives 5 customers who spend $1,300, the net profit from the investment is $300. The ROI is calculated by the following equation: (300/1,000) x 100 = 30%
SaaS (software as a service)
SaaS is a business model where the software is accessed over the internet, rather than installing and maintaining the software on your own device. This method of accessing software means that all you need is an internet connection to use a third-party’s software, rather than installing hardware.
SaaS marketing purely focuses on promoting and acquiring leads for subscription based SaaS products, typically using digital channels and content marketing. With plenty of SaaS competition out there, marketing efforts need to make a lot of noise in order to attract new ‘sticky’ customers that will sign-up for the long haul.
The process of dividing your audience into different groups based on various criteria, for example demographic, firmographic, behavioral, event-based, and transactional data. The benefit of segmenting your audience into smaller groups is that you are able to target them with customized messaging and personalizing your customers' experience.
SEO (search engine optimization)
The process of enhancing and optimizing content on a web page to influence where it is displayed in search engine results pages (SERPs). SEO focuses on generating organic traffic without the involvement of paid services such as search ads. SEO specialists help build websites that rank highly in search engine results and increase the number of leads to a web page.
A metric that rates every outgoing mail server IP address with a score between 0-100. This metric represents the reputation of a company and helps recipients filter unwanted emails. Before categorizing emails, a mail server checks the email sender score and then places that email in a recipient’s inbox or spam folder. Sender scores over 90 are considered “good” scores and scores under 90 may be deemed as spam and blacklisted from a recipient’s inbox.
A marketing strategy that uses permission-based SMS messaging to promote products, services, specials, competitions, etc. SMS marketing gives users a choice to opt-in or out of receiving future messages. Typically, this form of marketing is highly targeted and localized to engage with customers on a personal level.
Social media marketing
A marketing strategy that distributes content across a range of social media platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, and TikTok. Marketers use social media sites as a tool to reach new audiences and retarget existing customers. Social media marketing relies on the principles of organic search, encouraging viewers to interact with content by sharing or commenting on a post.
Storage as a Service (STaaS)
Think of STaaS as a division from infrastructure. The user can purchase digital storage capacity when they need it, saving them from purchasing and installing their own hard hard drives and data centers.
One of the most popular StaaS used currently is Dropbox, and if you haven’t heard of it yet… Well, thank goodness we found you from that rock you were hiding under.
A line of text that appears in a recipient’s inbox to identify the purpose of an email. The subject line is the first impression a recipient will have of an email and therefore, it must engage their attention within the very first line. Marketers A/B test subject lines to increase email open rates and maximize the impact of each word.
A policy that allows marketers to stop sending emails to unengaged contacts. By only sending emails to contacts who are engaged, marketers have a higher chance of boosting their email deliverability rate and their list integrity. Mailbox providers like Gmail and Outlook deem unopened content as unimportant and may even push that content into the recipient’s spam folder. If a large number of recipients have started to disengage with a company’s content, all emails may wind up in spam — even for those contacts who are still engaged.
Top of the funnel (TOFU) content
The stage of the funnel where marketers are targeting an audience who has yet to engage with their brand. Top of the funnel content engages with an audience who are at the awareness stage. Marketers create and distribute content and resources that are educational and useful to customers. This type of content focuses less on a company’s products and services and more on the needs and wants of the customer. Top of the funnel content includes blog articles, infographics, how-to videos, etc.
A type of email that is automatically sent to a customer after they take a specific action on a website or application. Also referred to as trigger emails, transactional emails contain information that customers require to complete an action.
For example, a transactional email may include a password reset, account activation link, subscription confirmation or purchase order. These emails are vital to providing a customer with a seamless and rewarding experience.
UI (user interface)
The process of designing software interfaces that provide users with an easy-to-navigate and pleasurable experience. UI refers to graphical interfaces like desktop and mobile screens and also voice-controlled interfaces like Siri and Alexa.
A user who visits a website more than once during a reporting period, for example a week, month, or year. Companies rely on unique visitor metrics to see the amount of traffic on their website and gauge its performance.
UTM tag (urchin tracking module)
A code attached to a custom URL that tracks a source, medium or campaign name. UTM tags are used by marketers to understand where a searcher came from and how they were directed to a specific web page.
UTM codes appear as text added to a link that informs analytics tools like Google Analytics on the traffic source. Marketers use UTM tags to track campaigns, advertisements, media announcements, etc. This helps them to gauge the success of individual campaigns and understand more about the referral traffic they receive.
UX (user experience design)
The process of providing users with meaningful and relevant product experiences. UX designers enhance a user’s overall satisfaction with a product by working across multiple teams. Their aim is to improve the usability, accessibility and enjoyment of a company’s product. The UX design process involves integrating design, branding, usability and function into every product.
An HTML form on a web page encourages users to enter and submit personal information like a mobile number or email address. Web forms contain a combination of elements such as text fields, multiple choice, checkboxes and more.
For example, a company may want to capture a user’s information to send them a weekly email. To send that information, a web form would ask the user to enter their email address.
Webhooks are automated messages sent from apps when an action takes place. They have a payload (or message), and are sent to a unique URL. They’re like a reverse API, in that rather than waiting for you to request information, it sends new data whenever it’s available.
The monitoring and recording of a users’ activity on a website. Web tracking helps a company to transform “anonymous” users (first-time visitors to a website) into “known” users (a user that is identified each time they enter and interact with a website).
A tracking system collects user data and turns that data into visitor traffic reports. This data helps a company make important decisions on the UX and UI of a website with the goal of increasing conversions.
A recording of the number of users who visit a website or web page. Website traffic is aggregated by analytics tools like Google Analytics and recorded as a site visit or session. Analyzing web traffic helps marketers determine which pages on their website are receiving the most attention.
A form of organic marketing where information about a brand is passed from person to person — whether they speak directly, over the phone, via email or across social media. Word of mouth marketing leverages the strategies of inbound marketing including content, social media and product marketing. This form of marketing is triggered by a person’s experiences with a brand and their emotional ties to a product or service.