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An Introduction to the Complete Dictionary of TV & Video Advertising Acronyms, Terms and Jargon

Posted by Ashley J. Swartz on Feb 4, 2020 1:00:00 PM

An Introduction to the Complete Dictionary of TV and Video Advertising Acronyms, Terms, and Jargon

The Business of TV & Video Advertising, Explained

TV advertising once represented a world unto itself, distinct from other media channels. Audiences sat in front of their TV sets and watched programming at scheduled times. Commercials were sold by national broadcasters, local affiliates, cable networks, and distributors, usually on a GRP basis. Advertisers were content to leverage TV for reach — without drilling down into who exactly they were reaching. The vocabulary of TV advertising was insular and consistent.

As you know, that train has left the station.

What’s Changed in TV Advertising

Viewing behaviors have changed dramatically, new suites of ad products have rolled out for online video and data-driven TV, and whole new ecosystems have sprung up, from OTT video services to ad tech companies that increase the efficiency of transactions. TV ads can now be delivered to specific households, and advertisers are clamoring for more sophisticated targeting options and the ability to measure outcomes across screens. Infused with digital terminology, the vocabulary of TV advertising is now incredibly complex — and complexity is the new normal.


A Dictionary Just for You

With that in mind, we’ve built a comprehensive, interactive TV 101 Dictionary to get you up to speed on the current state of TV advertising — or to help fill in the gaps if you’ve already got the basics down. Because we know how overwhelming this business can be, we’ve created this resource with media planners, yield operations managers, pricing and planning folks, account managers, sales executives and financial operators in mind. Bookmark it and come back as often as you like.

TV & Video Dictionary Categories

The dictionary is grouped thematically around 12 categories to give you context around all the acronyms and key term definitions you need to know:

  1. TV’s broadcast and cable origins
  2. The rise of digital video
  3. Currencies of measurement and sale
  4. Video advertising products
  5. Data-driven TV products
  6. Ad targeting
  7. Distribution and commercial models
  8. The advertising technology stack
  9. Traditional TV systems and workflows
  10. Job roles and functions in TV buying and selling
  11. Digital standards
  12. The future of TV advertising

We hope this resource makes you feel more confident when speaking with clients, vendors, partners, or teams within your own organization. Read it start to finish or review a section each day. Or just plug a term you don’t know into the search bar and learn what it’s all about.

Since change in our industry is a constant, we encourage you to bookmark this Dictionary and return often — we’ll be updating the tool to refresh definitions and add new terms as they arise.

Have a suggestion for inclusion in the TV 101 Dictionary? Send us a note at

Enjoy reading or searching!

TV Dictionary - Latest TV Industry Jargon


Topics: TV Advertising Sales