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Dreamforce is coming! Want to attend marketing sessions, but worried you don’t speak the language? Just peruse our handy marketing terms for easy translation. Now you can sit at the cool kids table, network with marketers and feel totally in the know.

A/B Testing

A/B testing is a simple comparison between two versions of something—web pages, subject lines, calls to action, landing pages, etc—to see which performs better. You show the two variants (versions A and B) to similar visitors at the same time, and the one that performs better wins. Yes, this is how we marketing folks have fun.


Marketing analytics is the practice of measuring the performance of your marketing pieces to maximize their effectiveness. Savvy marketers analyze website visitors, social channels, promotional emails, and much more, looking for trends and gleaning insights to make better decisions.

Call to Action (CTA)

A call to action is a link, button, or image on a marketing piece (think blog post, whitepaper, marketing email) that encourages a viewer to click. Some classic CTA examples include “Get the Guide,” “RSVP now,” and “Download This Awesome Whitepaper Today.” CTAs are the air we marketers breathe since they’re essentially the bait that entices someone to become a lead.


In marketing terms, content is information that exists for the purpose of helping our customers, being seen and shared. It comes in many forms—blog posts, videos, infographics, ebooks, photos, podcasts, whitepapers, and more—and is invaluable in driving website traffic, attracting leads, and maintaining customer relationships. Thanks to the interwebs, content is king.

Dynamic Content

Dynamic content is a way to display different types of email or website content based on the person viewing it. For example, if your company is sending a newsletter, one section could include upcoming events in a particular reader’s geographic area.


Freemium (free + premium) tools provide small businesses with free versions of a product, hoping they’ll eventually upgrade to paid services. They offer basic functionality and analytics—but free comes with a price, which is often limited integration and little-to-no customer service.


The funnel is a marketing model which illustrates the theoretical customer journey towards the purchase of a product or service. The top of the funnel refers to the first stage of the buying process, where all leads are beginning to look for information. The bottom of the funnel refers to the more narrow stage when they’re ready to close as new customers.

Key Performance Indicator (KPI)

Key Performance Indicators are measurable values that demonstrate how effectively a team is achieving its objectives. In other words, KPIs are data-driven goals.


Keywords are words or phrases that represent the gist of a web page and the common search terms people use to find content online. Marketers steer search engines toward their content by predicting search terms and structuring their website and content to include those keywords.

Landing Page

A landing page is a web page containing a form used for lead generation. This page revolves around a marketing offer, such as an ebook or a webinar, and serves to capture visitor information in exchange for some kind of offer.

Lead Nurturing

Sales and marketing leads are unique little snowflakes that have to be pandered to. So we marketers nurture them in hopes that they’ll grow into paying customers. How? By developing a series of communications (like emails) that help to engage leads and help them become customers, otherwise known as pushing them down the funnel.

Email Automation

As opposed to newsletters and one-off email campaigns that you create and send to a whole list of people in one go, an automated email campaign is set up by a marketer once and then automatically sent to a particular individual when that person meets a certain trigger. For example, when a lead signs up for a 30-day trial, he or she automatically receives a “getting started” email.

Qualified Lead

A qualified lead is a person that meets a set of criteria for purchasing your product in a reasonable timeframe. Most qualified leads have opted to receive communication from your company because they are interested in learning more. They have the need, budget, and authority to affect purchasing decisions.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Search engine optimization is the practice of enhancing where a web page appears in search results. By adjusting a page’s SEO elements (think: keywords, headlines, and image names), marketing teams can try to improve where a web page appears in search engine results (SERPs).

Social Media

Social media is media in the form of websites and apps that help users share content and network. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+ are examples of social media sites. “Social” is a core component of marketing, as it provides teams with additional channels to spread their lore. It’s trendy and sexy, but much less effective than email marketing.

Transactional Email

Account registration emails. Order confirmations. Cart abandonment emails. Password resets. These are examples of transactional emails or “system-triggered” emails sent by the websites or apps of products and services we interact with. Historically marketers have had zero access to the content, branding, or performance of these emails because they live in their website or app codes. That’s all changing.

Viral Content

This term is used to describe a piece of content that has become an online sensation through sharing. People often don’t know a content piece will go viral until it does—and people attempting to create viral pieces usually fall short.


A workflow is a set of automated triggers and events marketers use to keep their contacts involved with a brand through an automated process. Workflows can use based to send emails, update contact information, add/remove contacts from lists, and trigger email notifications.

Wrap up

Now that you can talk the talk, have a blast at Dreamforce! We hope see you there. To plan your agenda, check out our 4 epic days at Dreamforce for marketers

This blog provides general information and discussion about email marketing and related subjects. The content provided in this blog ("Content”), should not be construed as and is not intended to constitute financial, legal or tax advice. You should seek the advice of professionals prior to acting upon any information contained in the Content. All Content is provided strictly “as is” and we make no warranty or representation of any kind regarding the Content.
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