8 Social Media Buzzwords and What They Mean 

January 22, 2020

Heard any new social media marketing buzzwords lately? We aren’t talking about overused ones like “engage,” “hashtag,” “likes” or “viral.” Instead, we’re talking about 8 social media buzzwords we know are essential and relevant to the new year. Check out these social media marketing terms below. 

Vanity Metrics

When it comes to social media performance and campaign metrics, many marketers make the mistake of focusing on vanity metrics. Vanity metrics are an outdated form of measurement which doesn’t really tell you anything. These are numbers like the followers on your account or the number of likes on a post. These numbers were much more revered in the past. Today, they no longer provide valuable insight into who your audience is or how they respond to your content. They also don’t provide legitimate insight into whether they’re helping you achieve your business goals.

Instead, it’s more important to establish what your goals are and then determine the KPIs that showcases the tactic used to reach it. E.g.: Promote an event = # of event responses and # of tickets sold. Not sure what metrics you or your social media manager should be reporting on? We can help! Check out this article here.

Ephemeral Content

Thanks to Snapchat and Instagram Stories, ephemeral content continues to be on the rise. This type of content is temporary and short-lasting. They are living as snippets of photos or videos designed to elicit an immediate response from users while also embracing imperfect aesthetics. As a marketer, it’s important to keep up with the latest content trends to remain relevant to your audience.

Multi-touch Attribution

What does multi-touch attribution mean? How can social media get credit for a purchase? Today, consumers live in a cross-device world and their purchase journey spans many devices and touchpoints before resulting in a conversion. Multi-touch attribution refers to a series of touchpoints through the sales funnel and assigns revenue credit to those touchpoints. It’s important for marketers to connect how people move across devices, platforms and placements in order to reach customers effectively and determine what really drives conversions.


Micro-influencers are individuals that have very high engagement with their fan-bases and typically have a following between 1,000 to 100,000. They’re considered experts in their respective niche (e.g. fashion, travel, fitness, etc.) and have built ultimate trust with their followers. Brands and marketers are finding that micro-influencers have the ability to drive results at a lower cost than macro-influencers based on the relationship they have with their communities. On the other hand, macro-influencers (or influencers), are typically famous with a massive following. They are much more expensive without the same amount of trust developed with their followers.

Dark posts

Simply put, dark posts are targeted ads on social media. So what’s the difference between them and boosted and organic posts? Dark posts are not published or seen on your timeline. Instead, they are shown as sponsored content in the feeds of users you’re specifically targeting.

Dark social

Dark social, not to be confused with dark posts, is a term used to describe the “invisible” or private conversations that happen through messenger apps, texts, and emails and can’t be tracked. Let’s say you click a link to a product from an open social platform such as Facebook. Your analytics platform will be able to tell you exactly where that referral came. But if you copied-and-pasted the link and texted it to a friend who then purchased it, there’s no way for that referral to be tracked. Dark social is essentially word-of-mouth traffic that marketers are still working to find ways of tracking.

Reach: Organic vs. Paid

Once upon a time, marketers could reach a good portion of their followers when they published a post. Organic reach is the number of people who would see that post without the use of advertising. Today, organic reach has declined so much, your business is lucky to reach anyone. On Facebook, most business Pages don’t reach more than 1-2% of their audience. While Instagram currently has a higher organic reach, it’s still only at 10% and projected to decline in the next year. Paid reach is the number of people who see your content as a result of amplified/paid promotions. If brands and marketers want their content to be seen on social, they’re going to need to pay-to-play.


The last but not the least in our list of 8 social media buzzwords. The development and ever-changing social media algorithm will forever be a dominant topic for social media marketers.  All major platforms have an algorithm at work, be it Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and now, TikTok. But what is it exactly? Programming algorithms are used in social media to show you content that you’re most likely to be interested in 1) Seeing 2) Taking action on or 3) Engaging with. Today, on most platforms, algorithms have been updated to sort posts in a users’ feeds based on relevancy instead of publishing time. It’s up to marketers to stay up-to-date on these changes and adjust their content strategies based on those changes.

There you have it! Make sure to share this list of 8 social media buzzwords with your marketing team.