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Fundamentals of Nonprofit Marketing Terms
The following terms were chosen from the American Marketing Association’s dictionary. For
more marketing terms, visit http://www.marketingpower.com/_layouts/Dictionary.aspx .
Audience - The number and/or characteristics of the persons or households who are exposed to
a particular type of advertising media or media vehicle.
Brand & Branding - "A brand is a customer experience represented by a collection of images
and ideas; often, it refers to a symbol such as a name, logo, slogan, and design scheme. Brand
recognition and other reactions are created by the accumulation of experiences with the specific
product or service, both directly relating to its use, and through the influence of advertising,
design, and media commentary." Source: SEMPO and Wikipedia
Brand Awareness - Brand awareness is a marketing concept that enables marketers to quantify
levels and trends in consumer knowledge and awareness of a brand's existence. At the
aggregate (brand) level, it refers to the proportion of consumers who know of the brand.
Source: The MASB Common Language Project. http://www.themasb.org/common-language-
Brand Messaging - Creative messaging that presents and maintains a consistent corporate
image across all media channels, including search. Source: SEMPO
Database Marketing - An approach by which computer database technologies are harnessed to
design, create, and manage customer data lists containing information about each customer's
characteristics and history of interactions with the company.
Event Marketing - Promotional strategy linking a company to an event (sponsorship of a sports
competition, festival, etc.). Often used as a synonym for “sponsorship.” The latter term is
preferable, however, because not all sponsorships involve an event, per se. Source: IEG
Integrated Marketing Communications: A Planning process designed to assure that all brand
contacts received by a customer or prospect for a product, service, or organization are relevant
to that person and consistent over time.
Macroenvironment - The collection of uncontrollable forces and conditions facing a person or a
company, including demographic, economic, natural, technological, political, and cultural forces
Market positioning - Positioning refers to the customer's perceptions of the place a product or
brand occupies in a market segment. Positioning involves the differentiation of the company's
offering from the competition by making or implying a comparison in terms of specific
Marketing - Marketing is the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating,
communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients,
partners, and society at large. Source: The MASB Common Language Project.
Marketing Mix - The mix of controllable marketing variables that the firm uses to pursue the
desired level of sales in the target market. The most common classification of these factors is
the four-factor classification called the "Four Ps"-price, product, promotion, and place (or
distribution). Optimization of the marketing mix is achieved by assigning the amount of the
marketing budget to be spent on each element of the marketing mix so as to maximize the total
contribution to the firm. Contribution may be measured in terms of sales or profits or in terms
of any other organizational goals.
Marketing Objective - The desired or needed result to be achieved by a specific time. An
objective is broader than a goal, and one objective can be broken down into a number of
specific goals. Like goals, objectives serve to provide guidance, motivation, evaluation, and
Marketing Plan - A document composed of an analysis of the current marketing situation,
opportunities and threats analysis, marketing objectives, marketing strategy, action programs,
and projected or pro-forma income (and other financial) statements. This plan may be the only
statement of the strategic direction of a business, but it is more likely to apply only to a specific
brand or product. In the latter situation, the marketing plan is an implementation device that is
integrated within an overall strategic business plan.
Target Market - The particular segment of a total population on which the retailer focuses its
merchandising expertise to satisfy that submarket in order to accomplish its profit objectives
Unique Selling Proposition - An approach to developing the advertising message that
concentrates on the uniquely differentiating characteristic of the product that is both important
to the customer and a unique strength of the advertised products when compared to competing
Value Proposition - “A customer value proposition is the sum total of benefits a customer is
promised to receive in return for his or her custom and the associated payment (or other value
transfer).“ A customer value proposition is what is promised by a company's marketing and sales
efforts, and then fulfilled by its delivery and customer service processes.” Source: Wikipedia
Viral Marketing - A marketing phenomenon that facilitates and encourages people to pass along
a marketing message. Nicknamed viral because the number of people exposed to a message
mimics the process of passing a virus or disease from one person to another.
Word of Mouth Marketing - 1. (consumer behavior definition) This occurs when people share
information about products or promotions with friends. UPP/JCO]