The online world can be filled with some pretty perplexing words at times. Words that were never used in the “offline” world before it. Nowhere is this more clear than in the realm of digital marketing.

Unless you’re clued up on these terms, reading about SEO and ROIs can make you go N-U-T-S. That’s why we’ve put together our own beginner’s guide to digital marketing terms that will help you make sense of all of the language that us marketers use in our day-to-day work.

We could have just copied and pasted the relevant Google searches for each term. However, we ourselves often don’t find them helpful, and we already know the meanings of the words! That’s why we’ve attempted to describe each of the terms in our own way, using metaphors and examples to illuminate what we perceive the meanings of them to be.

So let’s get right into the post!


A Beginner’s Guide to Digital Marketing Terms


Digital Marketing:

A pretty huge umbrella term that can have hundreds of varying definitions. At its essence however, it’s about using digital technologies such as social media to reach and convert leads into paying customers.

It’s really no different to marketing as understood in the traditional sense i.e. promoting a product or brand. The same principles still apply. Literally the only difference is that this marketing is channelled through modern digital technologies.


Media Company:

This one is far easier to define. Quite simply, a media company is any business that creates and publishes its own content to consumers.

“But by that definition, I’d own a media company too?”, I hear you say. And that’s correct. We are a media company. You are a media company. In 2015 and beyond, everyone is a media company. For more info, click here.


Social Media:

People overcomplicate what social media is. Essentially, it’s socialising with each other over the internet. People using and sharing digital content to communicate and interact with each other.

It’s the digital version of meeting at the pub. Extending this metaphor, social media networks such as Twitter and Facebook act as the proverbial pub building. In other words, they are the places that facilitate this digital interaction.



The acronym for search engine optimisation. This refers to taking steps to optimise your discoverability and performance on search engines such as Google, so that you can rank higher on their tables and attract more traffic.


Content Marketing:

One of the methods that falls under the umbrella of digital marketing (see above), it refers to producing content such as blog posts (like this article you’re reading right now) as a way to generate leads and acquire customers.

Vagabond Media provides a content marketing service. To learn how it could benefit your business, click here.


Social Media Marketing:

Again, another method falling under the umbrella of digital marketing. This refers to using social media (see above) to market your business.

We also provide social media marketing services. Follow this link to discover how it can benefit your business.


Leads are your potential customers. They haven’t bought anything from you yet, but they have certain characteristics or have demonstrated certain kinds of behaviour to suggest that they would be more receptive to your message than your average person.



An impression is when your content has been displayed. In other words, if you have 100 impressions on a Facebook advertising campaigns, your advert will have been displayed 100 times.

Clearly, the more impressions you have for a piece of content the better. The more times that your content is displayed, the greater the likelihood of one of those impressions being displayed to people who would be interested in purchasing your service or product.



Conversions refer to when the desired action occurs. It could be when someone clicks the link to your blog post, or when someone clicks to “like” your facebook page on an advertising campaign that you’ve set up.



Quite simply, reach refers to the number of people that your content has reached. Or to put it another way, the number of pairs of eyeballs that have cast sight on your advert or piece of content.

It can include the people who have directly seen your content, along with the friends of those people who can see when their friends have engaged with your content in some way, such as by commenting on or sharing it.



An acronym for return on investment. This refers to the value or results derived from the money invested into a service or product.

Spending £100 on an advertising campaign to get a return equivalent to £60 is a poor return on investment. Conversely, spending £100 to get a return of £150 is a good return on investment.



B2B stands for business to business. It refers to the types of businesses that primarily deal with other businesses as their main source of income. Vagabond Media is an example of a B2B business, since we help other businesses market themselves online to their customers.



B2C stands for business to consumer. Contrary to B2B businesses (see above), these types of businesses primarily deal with consumers. Supermarkets and clothes stores are examples of B2C businesses.



In other words, the “what’s hot” of the internet. Trending refers to people or topics which are most frequently being mentioned and discussed at any given time on the internet.

For instance, the hashtag #prayforparis was trending recently, because people all over the world were using it to show support for the people who suffered from the terror attacks in Paris.



The name of the content that you produce on Twitter. What you might call a status update on Facebook, is what you would call a Tweet on twitter.

Unlike conventional status updates on other platforms, tweets are restricted to 140 characters.


Please note that this is an ever-expanding list. As more people ask us about the meaning of particular terms, this post will expand accordingly.

Has this guide helped you out? Have you learnt the meaning of a word that you were confused about before? Are there any words that you feel are missing from this list that you would still like to know the meaning of?

Then please, leave a comment below and let us know.


Image Credit: DigitalRalph on Flickr




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