Video Content Acronyms 101

Jason Wolfson Video Content

The video content world is full of acronyms (OT-what?).

Throwing around a bunch of letters can make anyone sound like an expert. But having a true knowledge of what these acronyms mean will give marketers a solid foundation to build expertise off of. Plus, if you don’t know what these acronyms mean, you won’t know how to best serve your customers.

If you’re a TV marketer exploring the video content space and feel like you can’t keep up with the lingo, you’re not alone.

What is digital vs. linear content?

Before you dive in, do you know the difference between linear and video content? Linear content is anything a consumer watches live on standard television through a cable or satellite provider. Think of it like static content: There isn’t much option for the consumer unless they change the channel.

Digital content, on the other hand, is anything streamed through a subscription service or consumed online. The consumer has full control over what they’ll watch and when.

Get familiar with these five video content acronyms — they’ll serve you well into the future:

1. VOD

What does it stand for? Video on demand

What does that mean? When a user has access to watch any regular cable programming at any time. Think of it like the opposite of linear content.


What does it stand for? Subscription video on demand

What does that mean? This is currently the most common form of video on demand — for a small subscription fee, customers can access a wide range of content whenever they please. You’ve definitely heard of the two most popular examples, Netflix and Amazon Prime.


What does it stand for? Advertising video on demand

What does that mean? Viewers can watch AVOD for free, but they will have to sit through advertisements while they watch the programming. Services like YouTube take the traditional form of cable commercial breaks and adapt them to shorter segments online.


What does it stand for? Multichannel video programming distributor

What does that mean? One service that offers multiple programming services. The services can include both cable and satellite options (think: DirecTV plus Comcast). Virtual MVPDs (VMPDs) provide the same service but don’t need any hardwiring (hello, Hulu!).

5. OTT

What does it stand for? “Over the top” box brand

What does that mean? This is just a fancy way of describing streaming services via the internet. A major draw for consumers with OTT is they don’t need to subscribe to a standard cable or satellite company, and these services are usually cost effective. Examples include Hulu and SlingTV.

How VuPulse Can Help

Whether you’re looking to grow visibility of your OTT or drive linear VOD ratings, VuPulse knows how to send your consumers to where they want to watch content. Together, we can make an impact through valuable data usage and finally solve the content consumption puzzle for good.

Ready to meet your consumers where they are? Contact us to get started today.