A-Z of useful terms.



Above the line

Above the line (ATL) is an advertising technique using mass media to promote brands. Major above-the-line techniques include TV and radio advertising, web and internet banner ads. This type of communication is conventional in nature and is considered impersonal to customers.


Action Script

This is a scripting language, used primarily for the development of websites and software using the Adobe Flash Player platform (in the form of SWF files embedded into Web pages). Initially designed for controlling simple 2D vector animations, later versions added functionality allowing for the creation of Web-based games and rich internet applications with streaming media (such as video and audio).



The greatest group of people and ideas that ever was.


After effect

Adobe After Effects is a digital motion graphics and compositing software published by Adobe Systems. It can be used in film and video post-production.



An application programming interface (API) is a source code interface that an operating system or library provides to support requests for services to be made of it by computer programs.



Business-to-business or “B2B” is a term commonly used to describe the transaction of goods or services between businesses, as opposed to that between businesses and other groups, such as transactions between business and individual consumers (B2C) or business to public administration (B2G) transactions.


Back end

Refers to the technologies that operate on the private server side of a web application (Databases, Video processing, 3D mapping, Email sending, File storage etc…)


Banner ad

This form of online advertising entails embedding an advertisement into a web page. It is intended to attract traffic to a website by linking them to the web site of the advertiser. The advertisement is constructed from an image (GIF, JPEG, PNG), JavaScript program or multimedia object employing technologies such as Java, Shockwave or Flash, often employing animation or sound to maximize presence. Images are usually in a high-aspect ratio shape (i.e. either wide and short, or tall and narrow) hence the reference to banners.


Below the line

Below the line (BTL) is an advertising technique. It uses less conventional methods than the usual specific channels of advertising to promote products, services, etc. than Above the line (ATL) strategies. These may include activities such as direct mail, public relations and sales promotions for which a fee is agreed upon and charged up front.



In computer graphics, a bitmap is a type of memory organization or image file format used to store digital images. The term bitmap comes from the computer programming terminology, meaning just a map of bits, a spatially mapped array of bits. Image pixels are generally stored with a colour depth of 1, 4, 8, 16, 24, 32, 48, or 64 bits per pixel

 Change order

Change orders are common to most projects, and very common with large projects. After the original scope (or contract) is formed, complete with the total price to be paid and the specific work to be completed, a client may decide that the original plans do not best represent his definition for the finished project. Accordingly, the client will suggest an alternate approach.


Click-through rate or CTR is a way of measuring the success of an online advertising campaign. A CTR is obtained by dividing the number of users who clicked on an ad on a web page by the number of times the ad was delivered (impressions). For example, if your banner ad was delivered 100 times (impressions delivered) and one person clicked on it (clicks recorded), then the resulting CTR would be 1 percent.

Banner ad click-through rates have fallen over time, often measuring significantly less than 1 percent. By selecting an appropriate advertising site with high affinity (e.g. a movie magazine for a movie advertisement), the same banner can achieve a substantially higher click-through rate. Personalized ads, unusual formats, and more obtrusive ads typically have higher click-through rates than standard banner ads.

CTR is most commonly defined as number of clicks divided by number of impressions and generally not in terms of number of persons who clicked. This is an important difference because if one person clicks 10 times on the same advertisement instead of once then the CTR would increase in the earlier definition but would stay the same in term of later definition.

Competitive Review

Internal process reviewing competitive market place online against your clients.


Short for cyan, magenta, yellow, and key (black), is a subtractive colour model, used in colour printing, also used to describe the printing process itself. Though it varies by print house, press operator, press manufacturer and press run, ink is typically applied in the order of the acronym. The CMYK model works by partially or entirely masking certain colours on the typically white background (that is, absorbing particular wavelengths of light). Such a model is called subtractive because inks “subtract” brightness from white.


Dots per inch (DPI) is a measure of printing resolution, in particular the number of individual dots of ink a printer or toner can produce within a linear one-inch (2.54 cm) space.

DPI refers to the physical size of an image when it is reproduced as a real physical entity, for example printed onto paper, or displayed on a monitor. A digitally stored image has no inherent physical dimensions, measured in inches or centimetres. Some digital file formats record a DPI value, which is to be used when printing the image. This number lets the printer know the intended size of the image, or in the case of scanned images, the size of the original scanned object. DPI refers to the physical size of an image when it is reproduced as a real physical entity, for example printed onto paper, or displayed on a monitor. A digitally stored image has no inherent physical dimensions, measured in inches or centimetres. Some digital file formats record a DPI value, which is to be used when printing the image. This number lets the printer know the intended size of the image, or in the case of scanned images, the size of the original scanned object.

Encapsulated PostScript, file format that supports both vector graphics and bitmap images. An EPS file is usually used for combination artwork or charts and graphs. Generally, an EPS file cannot be edited except by the software program that created it.


A software plugin that enables browsers to play multimedia animations. Some rich media advertisements require users to have this plugin.


Everyday low price, low risk item (Fast moving consumer goods).

Software for the creation of artwork files

Front End

Refers to technologies that work on the public facing client side of a web application (Interactive Flash & HTML visual display elements)

File Transfer Protocol. This is the language used for file transfer from computer to computer across the world wide web.


The Graphics Interchange Format (GIF) is an 8-bit-per-pixel bitmap image format and has since come into widespread usage on the World Wide Web due to its wide support and portability.

The format only uses a palette of up to 256 distinct colours from the 24-bit RGB colour space. It also supports animations and allows a separate palette of 256 colours for each frame. The colour limitation makes the GIF format unsuitable for reproducing colour photographs and other images with continuous colour, but it is well-suited for more simple images such as graphics or logos with solid areas of colour.

A file created by scanning a continuous tone original and saving the information as shades of gray; also, an image containing a series of tones stepped from white to black.


Hyper Text Markup Language (HTML) is a computer programming language that helps control the format of a documents content and design on the world wide web. An HTML editor is a software program that enables one to easily create HTML pages.

Software for the creation of artwork files


The number of times a banner ad was requested and presumably seen by users. It is often hard to obtain an accurate impression count as they can be undercounted due to issues relating to cache or overcounted due to requests that were not completed.


The Institute of Practitioners in Advertising (IPA) is the trade body and professional institute for leading agencies in the UK’s advertising, media and marketing communications industry, covering the creative, digital, direct marketing, healthcare, media, outdoor, sales promotion and sponsorship sectors.


In computing, JPEG is a commonly used method of compression for photographic images. The name JPEG stands for Joint Photographic Experts Group, the name of the committee that created the standard.

JPEG is the format most used for storing and transmitting photographs on the World Wide Web. For this application, it is preferred to formats such as GIF, which has a limit of 256 distinct colours that is insufficient for colour photographs, and PNG, which produces much larger image files for this type of image. The JPEG compression algorithm is not as well suited for line drawings and other textual or iconic graphics, and thus the PNG and GIF formats are preferred for these types of images.

PDF – Portable Document Format
This Adobe technology is a popular way of formatting documents in such a way that they can be viewed and printed on multiple platforms using the freely available Adobe Acrobat reader.

Software for retouching and manipulation of images


Portable Network Graphics (PNG) is a bitmapped image format that employs lossless data compression. PNG was created to improve upon and replace the GIF format, as an image-file format not requiring a patent license.

PNG was designed for transferring images on the Internet, not professional graphics, and so does not support other colour spaces (such as CMYK).

A page description programming language created by Adobe Systems Inc. that is a device-independent industry standard for outputting documents and graphics

Quark Express
Software for the creation of artwork file

Rate card

The published rates and ad space availability for a particular media such as a web site. Usually subject to change and often negotiable. May also include technical details regarding the banner specifications.


The number of unique visitors that visited a site over the course of the reporting period, expressed as a percent of the universe for the demographic category. Also called unduplicated audience.


Screen resolution verses print


The RGB colour model is an additive model in which red, green, and blue (often used in additive light models) are combined in various ways to reproduce other colours. The name of the model and the abbreviation ‘RGB’ come from the three primary colours, red, green, and blue and the technological development of cathode ray tubes which could display colour instead of a monochrome phosphorescence (including grey scaling) such as black and white film and television imaging.

In additive colour models such as RGB, white is the “additive” combination of all primary coloured lights, while black is the absence of light.


Rich Media

A type of advertisement technology that often includes richer graphics, audio or video within the advertisement. Unlike static or animated GIF banner advertisements, rich media advertisements often enable users to interact with the banner without leaving the page on which it appears. Some popular types of rich media banners are created with HTML, Shockwave & Flash.


Tagged Image File Format (abbreviated TIFF) is a container format for storing images, including photographs and line art. It is now under the ownership of Adobe. TIFF is a popular format for colour and black and white images. The TIFF format is widely supported by image-manipulation applications, by publishing and page layout applications, by scanning, faxing, word processing, optical character recognition and other applications. Huge file sizes!!!!



Vector graphics (also called geometric modelling or object-oriented graphics) is the use of geometrical primitives such as points, lines, curves, and polygons, which are all based upon mathematical equations to represent images in computer graphics. It is used in contrast to the term raster graphics, which is the representation of images as a collection of pixels, and used as the sole graphic type for actual photographic images.


Viral marketing and viral advertising refer to marketing techniques that use pre-existing social networks to produce increases in brand awareness, through self-replicating viral processes, analogous to the spread of pathological and computer viruses.

Wire Frame

Wireframes are a basic visual guide used to suggest the layout and placement of fundamental design elements in the interface design. Because of this they must be completed before any artwork is developed.



ASP – Application Service Provider


CSS – Cascading Style Sheets


CPA – Cost Per Action


CPC – Cost Per Click


CPS – Cost Per Sale


CTR – Click-Through Rate/Ratio


DH – Direct Hit


FFA – Free-For-All Link List


IM – Instant Messaging


PFI – Pay For Inclusion       


PFP – Pay For Performance


POS – Point of sale


PPC – Pay Per Click


PPCSE – Pay Per Click Search Engine


PPL – Pay Per Lead


PPS – Pay Per Sale


PV – Page View


ROI – Return on investment


SEM – Search Engine Marketing


SEO – Search Engine Optimization


SEP – Search Engine Positioning


SME – Small to medium sized business


UV – Unique Visitor