What does CTA mean to you? Until recent years it meant two things to me: the transportation method I used to get to work each day, (Chicago Transit Authority,) and the 1970’s band of the same name. Today it has a new meaning in the world of writing and marketing: Call To Action. And it refers to a statement made in your writing and marketing materials, usually near or at the end, telling readers exactly what you want them to do such as “read more.”
As I ghostwrite for clients and communicate with them and through social media outlets, I’m bombarded with acronyms. They are everywhere and can be confusing when their meanings aren’t familiar to readers. Like when my accountant refers to EBITDA (Earnings before interests, taxes, depreciation, and amortization,) or a client asks me to ghostwrite an RFP (Request for proposal.)
If you’re swimming in a pool of unfamiliar acronyms, peruse this list of commonly used business ones to help you get up to speed.
B2B – business to business
B2C – business to consumer
CTR – clickthrough rate, or the amount of clicks your published weblinks get.
CX – customer experience, or how people feel after using your product or service.
FPO – for placement only, used to hold space in a document until the final image is inserted.
JPEG – a file extension for a compressed image file, usually a photo.
PDF – a document format that turns a printed document into an electronic image for electronic storage and transmittal.
CAD – computer aided design
DOE – depending on experiment
ERP – enterprise resource planning and software that companies use to store and manage data
ESOP – employee stock ownership plan
HTML – hypertext mark-up language, usually used to code web pages
IPO – initial public offering, or the price of stock when it is first released to the market
ISP – internet service provider
KPI – key performance indicators
NOI – net operating income
R&D – research and development
ROI – return on investment
RRP – recommended retail price
SEO – search engine optimization, or methods used to aid search engines in finding your online sites and documents
VPN – virtual private network, or an encryption method used to secure access to a remote computer over the Internet.
Are You All Thumbs?
Texting is laborious. Even double-thumb texters must hit one key at a time. Those of us who learned to type using the old Gregg typing method think and key in whole words rather than single letters when using computer keyboards. So the single key method feels especially laborious. Still, the immediacy of communicating via smartphones has made texting my preferred communication method today. But even with the double-thumb method I like to use the kind of shortcuts that I learned in my high school shorthand class. They speed up the process. Are you using some? If not, you should be.
Whether you’re trying to decipher text abbreviations, or looking for some, the following list may come in handy.
ABT2 – about to
AFC – away from computer
AFK – away from keyboard
BC – because
BRO – be right over
BRB – be right back
BZ – busy
EOD – end of day/end of discussion
F2F – face to face
G2G – got to go
IDK – I don’t know
IMO – in my opinion
LOL, ROTFL and all derivatives, including those not suitable for printing in a business publication – laugh out loud, rolling on the floor laughing, or haha
NBD – no big deal
NRN – no reply necessary
NVM – never mind
OTW – on the way
TXS – thanks
WK – week
YW – your welcome
As you read, write, and create content for branding use this mini glossary to decode new acronyms and help you speed your communications. U can tk me 4 it ltr, but it’s nbd.