The Ultimate Paid Social Ads Glossary

The Ultimate Paid Social Ads Glossary

The Ultimate Paid Social Ads Glossary

So you want to delve into the world of paid social with Meta Ads. Great idea! But to get the most out of your marketing, you’ll want to understand all the important words and acronyms. 

Here are all the terms we think you should know to start talking about your paid social marketing like a pro.

What is Paid Social marketing? 

Before covering anything else, what are paid social ads? And what is the difference between organic social and paid social posts?

Paid social ads are sponsored posts businesses pay Meta to display on feeds for Facebook and Instagram users. They’ll be marked with a disclaimer to differentiate them from other posts, e.g. with ‘Sponsored Post’ or ‘Ad’. 

These ads can appear regardless of whether the user follows the business’ account or not: in fact, they’re ideal for reaching audiences who may never have even heard of your business before. 

Paid social marketing glossary.

What is Organic Social Marketing?

Organic social media refers to the posts a business makes for free using its own social media account. These are most likely to be seen by people who already follow the business on that platform, who may also boost that post to their followers through liking and sharing it. 

These posts can also appear in algorithm-driven ‘For You’ feeds, where the social media platform will find posts similar to ones the user has engaged with before. 


  • Ad set Budget Optimisation. Allows you to set your budgets at an ad set level, giving you more control over which ads and audiences you want to put the most budget behind.

Ad set

  • A group of ads that share the same budget, schedule, delivery optimisation and targeting. Contained within campaigns.

Advantage+ Creative

  • Advantage+ creative automatically creates variations of your creative and copy based on what each person will most likely respond to. You can select which optimisations you want to apply, including adding filters, varying aspect ratios, and using different text combinations. 


  • Advantage+ Shopping Campaign. This type of sales campaign is available in Meta Ads Manager for Facebook and Instagram. An ASC finds audiences to target based on AI-powered algorithms, rather than the targeting options being chosen manually. 


  • The period when conversions will be attributed to an ad. If your attribution setting is 7-day click, a conversion that occurs within a 7-day window of that person clicking the ad will be attributed to it.


  • Contains your ad sets and ads. 


  • An ad format with 2-10 images/videos each with its own headline, description, and destination that are swiped/clicked through in sequence. Catalogues can be used to create carousel ads.


  • A set of products from your store that can be used for certain ad formats, such as Carousels and Collections.


  • Campaign Budget Optimisation. This term was replaced by the term Advantage campaign budget on Meta, but you might still see it used in marketing.


  • An ad format that opens as a full-screen Instant Experience featuring multiple products. A collection ad can feature a single image/video as a header.


  • Cost per click. Divide the number of clicks your post’s link has reached by the amount spent. E.g. an ad with 100 clicks and a spend of £100 would have a CPC of £1.00.


  • The average cost per 1,000 Impressions.


  • Cost per purchase. The average cost per purchase from your ads.


  • Click-through Rate. The percentage of Impressions that resulted in someone clicking the post link. 


  • The URL your ad directs users to when they click. 


  • An action users will make on your site such as page view or purchase. These can be tracked using the Meta pixel


  • The average number of times each user sees your ad. 


  • The number of times your ad has appeared. Differs from Reach because Impressions can include the same person seeing the ad multiple times. 

Instant Form

  • A form that appears when a user clicks on a lead gen ad, allowing them to input details to complete an action such as signing up for a newsletter or receiving a download.  

Learning Limited 

  • This occurs when there are not enough optimisation events to exit the learning phase. This can be caused by a variety of factors such as a low budget, a small audience, or an infrequent optimisation event

Learning Phase

  • The time when the system is ‘learning’ the best way to deliver your ad(s)/ad set(s). Performance during this time is likely to be less stable and have a higher cost per result. 


  • An audience type consisting of users with similar characteristics to your existing customers. The level of similarity can be set by percentage, with 1% being the smallest, most similar audience, with higher percentages becoming larger and broader. 

Meta Advantage campaign budget

  • Originally known as Campaign budget optimisation (CBO). Automatically distributes a campaign budget across all ad sets. The campaign budget can be set as a daily or lifetime budget.

Meta pixel

  • A piece of code installed on your website that tracks activity between your site and Meta. 


  • The goal you want your campaign to achieve. Examples include Sales, Leads, Traffic and Awareness. 

Optimisation Event

  • This defines which behaviour Meta will optimise towards, such as purchases or link clicks.


  • Where your ad(s) will appear. Your ad will need to be optimised for different placements, e.g. having sizes for your creative to fit both square and story dimensions. 


  • The number of individual accounts your ad has reached.


  • Return on Ad Spend. To calculate, divide Conversion Revenue by Amount Spent. E.g. If you’ve made £1,000 in revenue and spent £500 on ads, your ROAS will be 2.  

Sales Funnel 

  • These are the stages a user progresses through towards conversion. The funnel can be split into 3 main sections: TOF, MOF, and BOF.


  • Top of Funnel. This stage of the customer journey is also referred to as prospecting or as cold targeting. These customers haven’t engaged with you and don’t know anything about your business.


  • Middle of Funnel. This stage of the customer journey is also referred to as retargeting or as warm targeting. Users have an awareness of your product at this stage but are still considering whether to purchase. Sometimes this stage will be grouped in with BOF.


  • Bottom of Funnel. This stage of the customer journey is also referred to as retargeting or as hot targeting. Users have hit the purchase stage of the funnel and are ready to buy from you.

Single Image/Video

  • An ad format featuring one image or video.

Thumb-Stop Rate

  • The percentage of people who watched the first 3 seconds of your video. To get the best results from video ads, you want to grab someone’s attention in these first 3 seconds.

URL Parameters (UTMS)

  • A tool that allows you to track the effectiveness of your ads, e.g. seeing where website traffic is coming from. 

Now you should be well on your way to understanding paid social marketing lingo. If you want to how to make all of this work for your business, drop us a message! We’d love to chat. 

Tired of Marketing Holding You Back?


Copyright 2024 MIRA Media Group Ltd

Tired of Marketing Holding You Back?


Tired of Marketing Holding You Back?


Copyright 2024 MIRA Media Group Ltd