Words PR Students May Not Know – But Definitely Should


On Tuesday (4/9/13) I attended an event put on by PRSA Boston. It was a talk about SEO, and how to properly use it.

Now, here’s a bit of background: I only decided around December that I wanted to do PR. My first class in PR will be in the fall. Going into this room full of PR pros, who have been at it for 10, 20, 30 years, I was very much behind. They were saying so many things that I wasn’t quite sure what any of them meant.

I took down a list of the big ones that were said often, and decided to Google them. Then I thought, “Hey, there might be people just like me! Let’s make a blog post about it!” And so, here we are. Here are the terms that I heard quite a bit of.

  • SEO – Search Engine Optimatization.

Thankfully, I knew this one before the event, considering this was the main topic! Basically, Search Engine Optimization is getting yourself/your client the highest possible (AKA first entry on page 1 of Google) naturally. By naturally (or”organic”), I mean without paying.

  • B2B – Business to Business.

This is essentially a marketing term, between manufacturers and wholesalers, wholesalers and retailers. Any sort of selling that does not involve your everyday, average consumer. PR agencies are B2B – they sell their services to clients, who are businesses.

  • PPC – Pay-per-click

You know those ads you see on the sides or tops of websites? (They are there, you may just have trained yourself to ignore them.) Those ads are generally pay-per-click. Every time someone clicks on that ad, the company running that ad pays the publisher/webmaster an amount set by said publisher/webmaster. In terms of search engines (like Google), companies bid on keywords, and how much they bid determines where they go.

  • SOV – Share of Voice

Basically, SOV is a system to ensure that everyone is getting an equal percentage among other advertisers. If there are 4 advertisers, they each get 25% of the advertising “weight”. It makes sure company A’s advertisements aren’t getting seen more than companies B, C, and D’s ads.

  • SERPs – Search Engine Results Page.

You type something into a search engine, and you get a page (or many, many pages) of results. That page is called a SERP.

  • CPCs – Cost per Click

See Pay-per-Click above. Just a different term for the same thing.

  • CTR – Click-through-rate

It’s how advertisers measure the success of an online ad or email. It measures users activity on the page. When they first clicked the ad and how long they spent on subsequent pages (if any time at all).

  • B2C – Business to Consumer.

Also known as retail. The grocery store, the mall, the bakery down the street – all of them are B2C.

And as a bonus, here’s a question that I was curious about. Google will penalize you if you spam SEO, or stuff keywords. I wasn’t too sure exactly how they did that, so here’s my research!

When Google penalizes a website, they manually override their algorithm and either bring your webpage down in rankings on SERPs, or they remove you completely from the search results. However, Google doesn’t often penalize people – their algorithm does.


Are there any I missed? Did I get my facts wrong? Let me know, and I’ll add/edit!

Have a wonderful day, everybody!


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