A corporate communicators guide to business acronyms and abbreviations

In corporate communications, TLAs (three-letter acronyms) are everywhere. Not only do we use our own department acronyms (NFP), but also acronyms from accounting, human resources, legal, and IT.

Of course, we use acronyms to save time. It’s much faster to say (or write) CPC than “cost per click.” Unfortunately, not everyone knows what CPC means, and if an acronym is not initially defined, its meaning can get lost.

Below is a list of common business acronyms and their definitions. Please note that this list is not comprehensive, but it’s a good place to start.

  1. ABC — always be closing
  2. AIDA — attention, interest, desire, action
  3. API — application program interface
  4. B2B— business to business
  5. B2C — business to consumer
  6. BCP — business continuity plan
  7. CAN-SPAM — controlling the assault of non-solicited pornography and marketing
  8. CPC — cost per click
  9. CTA — call to action
  10. CTR — click through rate
  11. CR — conversion rate
  12. CRM — customer relationship management
  13. CSS — cascading style sheet
  14. DB — defined benefit
  15. DNS — domain name system
  16. EAP — employee assistance program
  17. FAB — features, advantages, benefits
  18. FTE — full-time equivalent
  19. GAAP — generally accepted accounting principles
  20. GL — general ledger
  21. KPI — key performance indicator
  22. LLC — limited liability corporation
  23. LLP — limited liability partnership
  24. LP — limited partnership
  25. MEGO — my eyes glazed over
  26. NDA – non-disclosure agreement
  27. NFP — not for publication
  28. NPS — net promoter score
  29. NRN – no reply necessary
  30. OE — open enrollment
  31. OOO — out of office
  32. PHI — protected health information
  33. PIP — performance improvement plan
  34. PLC — public limited company
  35. TLA — three letter acronym
  36. ROS — run of site
  37. RSS — Rich site summary or really simple syndication
  38. SAAS — software-as-a-service
  39. SMART — specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, time-bound
  40. SPD — summary plan description
  41. SQL — structured query language
  42. SSL — secure sockets layer
  43. SWOT — strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats
  44. TED — tell me, explain to me, describe to me
  45. UPS — uninterruptible power supply
  46. VPN — virtual private network
  47. ZBB — zero-based budgeting

This post was first published on Ragan Communication’s PR Daily.

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