• lock on red storage box
    Unlocking the Print Mysteries.

Afraid to ask what something means, or how it works? We are happy to help you avoid a red face. Below is a recap of some of the more confusing concepts in print and digital media, and a very basic introduction to their meanings. Is it exhaustive? Nope. So help us add to the list by asking us to define a concept for you.

A/B Split: 50% use one version (creative, paper stock, etc.) and 50% use another to test efficacy.
Acculturation : Acculturation is the process of cultural change and psychological change that results following meeting between cultures.
Co-op: In the print media world co-op is an abbreviation for cooperative opportunity. Co-ops, usually envelopes or FSIs, are different from traditional direct mail or inserts in that they allow all advertisers participating to share the cost. The downside of a co-operative vehicle is generally a lower response rate.

Confirmation/Cirtificate of Insertion aka Affidavit

CPG: Consumer Package Good; a term commonly used for goods consumed every day by consumers. (i.e. food, beverages, cosmetics and cleaning products)
CPM: (British: CPT) CPM stands for cost per thousand. When print rates are given in terms of CPM, you can calculate total spend by multiplying the CPM by the circulation/volume then dividing by 1,000. 
DAL: Detached Address Label. A separate address card that is made of paper or cardboard stock used to carry address information when preparing a mailing of unaddressed Periodicals flats, Standard Mail flats or merchandise samples, or unaddressed Bound Printed Matter.
DMA: A DMA, Designated Market Area, is a geographically district area that is based on local TV markets. A DMA is larger than the corresponding city and can be viewed as the extended metro area. The term was first coined by Nielsen to help develop Nielsen ratings for television markets.

double page spread, or 2 page spread

Evergreen Offer:

An evergreen offer is one that will span over multiple promotional periods and often does not include an expiration date. In the instance of a client offer including an expiration date close to the IHD of the ad, the client may choose to run an evergreen offer. In some cases, this will be a forced decision from the program manager in order to comply with their shelf-life rules. The content of an evergreen ad is something that is not specific to the unique offer period, but rather focuses on offers that do not expire or other product or service attributes. Dependent on the client, an evergreen ad may not include a price point or may show a non-promotional price (that is not set to change in the foreseeable future). In certain cases a “dummy” expiration date may be included to further protect the advertiser.

FSI: FSI is an abbreviation for Free Standing Insert. FSI's are either single sheets or multipage inserts  that are inserted into shared mail vehicles or newspapers.
Hard Endorsement: Including the logo of a magazine or company on your creative. It often includes an exclusive offer available to readers of that publication. E.g. "[Logo] offers an exclusive 10% coupon to readers of Pets Magazine!"
House File: Your in house customer file - list of names and addresses with their purchase history. These are existing or historic customers - NOT lists of names you have mailed hoping to acquire customers (Those names are your Prospect File)
HTML: HTML stands for HyperText Markup Language, the authoring language used to create pages on the World Wide Web. HTML is a set of codes or HTML tags that provide a web browser with directions on how to structure a web page's information and features.

An index is a statistical measure of changes in a representative group of individual data points. 

Indicia: The substitute stamp placed on every commercially mailed piece in the USA that details who is responsible for paying postage. Often found in the mailing label or top right corner of mailed pieces, this stamp is necessary for commercial mail to be sent and processed through the USPS. 

Key Performance Indicator (KPI) is a measurable value that demonstrates how effectively a company is achieving key business objectives. Organizations use KPIs to evaluate their success at reaching targets.

LOG: Letter of Guarantee. Form stating that the signed party is responsible for payment in full to the company listed on the agreement. 
LSD: stands for Live Scenario Development
An individual learns more/ is more successful when they are putting something into action rather than in theory. 
MRI Data: MRI refers to the advertising company Mediamark Research and Intelligence. MRI gathers opinions on magazines. Most of MRI's data comes from their yearly "Survey of the American Consumer." MRI gathers data for this survey through in-person interviews of 26,000 consumers about their lifestyle, attitude and use of over 6,000 products in 550 categories.

A weekly newsmagazine or newspaper that reports current events.

OOH: Out-of-home media advertising is focused on marketing to consumers when they are "on the go" in public places, in transit, waiting (such as in a medical office), and/or in specific commercial locations (such as in a retail venue). OOH advertising formats fall into four main categories: billboards, street, roads, highways, transit, and alternative.
Perfect A/B Split: An A/B split where every other copy gets the different versions.  (In a regular A/B split, the versions could be split between the first half and the second half.)
PIP: Package Insert Programs are outbound mailings of product shipments either from an onlin epurchase or form a catalog buy execution. 
PP: printed pages (pagination)
Prospect File: List of names and addresses you have mailed attempting to acquire new customers. Once a "Prospect File" name purchases from you - they become a member of the House File, and need to be "Scrubbed" from the prospect file.

Request for proposal. A way for advertisers to shop potential agencies or programs by requesting proposals from various companies. 

RGB: RGB is the abbreviation for Red, Blue and Green. RGB is the standard color palette for digital displays and offers a color range of over 16 million colors. It's counterpart in the print world is CMYK, which is a four color process commonly used in off-set printing.
ROAS: Return on ad spending. According to Nielsen, magazines deliver the highest ROAS at $3.94 per dollar of media spent. Digital video came in at $1.53, while other media channels clustered around $2.50. 
Scrubbed: Eliminating the duplication of names on multiple files. Think of a big kitchen brush that eliminates the stain of the name on the prospect list once it needs to be removed. If you fail to remove the name through scrubbing - you are targeting an existing customer as a prospect. Very wasteful indeed.
Service Level Agreement (SLA):

A service-level agreement is an agreement between two or more parties, where one is the customer and the others are service providers.

Shared Mail: In the 1980’s, the United States Postal Service passed a new ruling that actually created this category of direct mail marketing. For the first time, it allowed multiple advertisers to share the cost of third class mailing by combining their individual printed ads into one open package.
SMS: Stands for "Short Message Service". SMS is used to send text messages to mobile phones. The messages can typically be up to 160 characters.
Soft Endorsement: Mentioning the name of the magazine or company on your creative as an endorsement. E.g. “ Special Offer for Ballard Design Customers”

Providing a service from start to finish for immediate use. In the marketing industry, often signifying when print is included with a media's placement and distribution. 

Vertical Market: A vertical market is a market in which vendors offer goods and services specific to an industry, trade, profession, or other group of customers with specialized needs. It is distinguished from a horizontal market, in which vendors offer a broad range of goods and services to a large group of customers with wide range of needs, such as businesses as a whole, men, women, households, or, in the broadest horizontal market, everyone.
White Samples:

White samples are printer blanks supplied in order to verify if formats are workable for the print/insert vendor. They are supplied by our printers for testing when we are asking for an exception to the published specs.

Wrap: Wrap refers to an oversized, then folded print piece that surrounds other advertising offers. Advertisers can choose to run on the wrap itself, or insert their own advertising flyer into the wrap. A Wrap is effectively a carrier of ads that acts as an advertising vehicle itself.