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5 marketing buzzwords worth knowing

Marketers are the masters of the portmanteau—a combination of two existing words into a new concept. Words like “phygital,” “fediverse,” and “edutainment” are tossed around, but what do they actually mean? Here are a few of our favorites.

1. Phygital

What does it mean? A blend of physical and digital (no surprise there) that allows marketers to target across in-person and online channels seamlessly. A successful phygital marketing campaign might show consumers a product in a social media ad and then retarget them with an in-app deal on that product when they visit a store.

How is it used? Colgate-Palmolive masters the phygital shelf by paying attention to product availability, search optimization, and consistent content across channels. “​Winning online and offline starts with winning the ‘phygital’ (physical and digital) shelf,” said Diana Haussling, vice president and general manager of consumer experience and growth at Colgate-Palmolive, earlier this year.

Why should you care? Customers are looking for seamless retail experiences between online and in-store. That requires seamless marketing across channels.

Isn’t that just omnichannel marketing? Kind of, but it’s fun to say phygital.

2. Fediverse

What does it mean? The federated universe refers to decentralized social networks where platforms can communicate across servers.

How is it used? The fediverse includes Mastodon, the decentralized platform that got a lot of buzz when Elon Musk took over X, formerly known as Twitter.

Why should you care? Fediverse platforms are ad-free, meaning they probably aren’t top of mind for advertisers. But if fediverse platforms were to take off, brands would no longer be beholden to big social media companies in the same way.

3. LinkedInfluencer

What does it mean? An influencer who has mastered the art of B2B social platform LinkedIn.

How is it used? The same way “influencer” would be used in any creator economy conversations, but specific to LinkedIn.

Why should you care? More than 1 in 5 people in the US are on LinkedIn, and both the creator economy and B2B ad spend are growing, according to our forecast. As buyers get younger and B2B marketing becomes increasingly digital, authenticity and experience matters more in marketing.

4. Gen Zalpha

What does it mean? A combination of Gen Z and Gen Alpha, which means anyone born after 1996.

How is it used? Remember zillennials (Gen Z combined with millennials)? Gen Zalpha has taken over as the term used to refer to young folks with increasing spending power.

Why should you care? Gen Zalpha’s spending power will grow three times faster than any other generation’s by 2030, according to a Bain & Company report. Marketers who want to build brand loyalty among young folks will need to focus on this demographic.

Are Gen Zalphas different from kidults? Yes! Kidults refers to consumers 12 and older who are driving toy sales growth. So while Gen Zalpha definitely contains toy buyers, kidults are generally older, though there is some overlap.

5. Edutainment

What does it mean? Content that educates while it entertains.

How is it used? Brands like stationary company Papier have tapped into edutainment on TikTok as a marketing strategy by featuring tutorials on bullet journaling and note taking.

Why should you care? Edutainment allows brands to feature content on how to actually use their products. It’s a great way to build community, enhance creator content, and engage with Tiktok trends.

What about advertainment? Not so far from edutainment, advertainment refers to advertisements that provide entertainment, meaning viewers are more likely to be engaged.

This was originally featured in the eMarketer Daily newsletter. For more marketing insights, statistics, and trends, subscribe here.