Glossary of Advertising Terms

Term Definition
Account  The relationship between agency and client - an account may cover one campaign or many years of advertising, and may include all the products marketed by a client or just one
Advertorial  An paid-for advertisement which includes editorial content; normally identified in a print magazine with the word "Advertisement" printed as a head across the top of the page to distinguish it from genuine (in theory unbiased) editorial content
Agency  The organisation that takes care of advertising for clients.
Anchorage  The 'pinning down of meaning' that a caption provides when coupled with an ambiguous image - or vice versa
Animatic  A filmed storyboard, where stills or short extracts are put together as a rough edit to show the client prior to the filming and editing of a full quality (and therefore expensive) TVC
Benefits  The features of a product that are highlighted to customers in ads. There are only two real benefits: better and cheaper. An ad may highlight the supposed emotional benefits of owning a product (eg you'll be happier, more attractive)
Billboard  Space for outdoor advertising
Brand  See definition on main page
Brief  The outline of a campaign's purpose given to the agency by the client. The brief is then developed further by the agency for internal use
Campaign  A time-limited set of ads - campaigns may run across different media, and for one month or ten years, but can be categorised together as they are the execution of a central idea
Client  The organisation who pays the agency
Coverage  calculated in percentages, the proportion of a target audience who has the opportunity to see an ad once
Creative  The creative ideas behind an ad, or the person/team who comes up with them
Classified  advertising which does not used pictures, and is generally not produced by an agency. A good example of how vendors can communicate directly with buyers
Copy  The text created for an ad
Demographics  Describing an audience by age, gender, ethnicity, location - ie the facts about them
Focus Groups  Small, select groups representing a target audience who are paid to answer questions at the behest of a market research organisation
Frequency  The number of times an audience get the opportunity to see an ad
Pitch  The communication by the agency of a campaign strategy to the client
Penetration  The proportion of a potential market that is actually using a particular brand
Product Placement  The practice of paying for a branded product to be used by a character in a movie - eg James Bond driving a BMW Z3
Product Positioning  Establishing the market niche of a product - which may not be as the brand leader - and advertising to the appropriate segment of the audience
Propaganda  The deliberate manipulation of information in order to achieve certain objectives - NB this is RARELY used in connection with modern advertising
Psychographics  Describing an audience by their shared psychological profile (likes, dislikes etc)
Reach  Similar to coverage
Slogan  Line of copy which encapsulates the campaign strategy
Space  The pages in a magazine or newspaper which can be sold (as double spreads, foldouts, full, half and quarter pages) to advertisers
USP< Unique Selling Proposition/point - a highlighted benefit of a product which makes it stand out from all rival brands.