Glossary of Common Growth Terms

By popular request, here’s every acronym in the Software Developer’s Guide to Growth distilled into a handy, bookmarkable cheatsheet.


  • AARRR (or AAARRR) - awareness, acquisition, activation, retention, renewal, revenue, in that order.
  • ABM (Account-Based Marketing) - a marketing strategy that targets specific accounts or organizations with personalized marketing campaigns.
  • ARR (Annual recurring revenue) - the total amount of revenue that a company expects to receive from its recurring subscriptions over the course of a year.


  • B2B (Business-to-business (B2B) marketing is the process of selling products or services to other businesses.
  • B2C (Business-to-consumer (B2C) marketing is the process of selling products or services directly to consumers.
  • BI (Business Intelligence) - the use of data and analytics to help businesses make better decisions.


  • CAC (Customer acquisition cost) - the average amount of money that a company spends to acquire a new customer.
  • CPC (Cost-per-click) - the amount of money that a company pays every time someone clicks on their ad.
  • CRM (Customer Relationship Management) - A software system for managing customer data and interactions.
  • CMS (Content Management System) - A software system for managing marketing content (web pages, blog posts, digital assets, etc)
  • CTA (Call to action) - the next step a customer is asked to take (e.g., clicking “try now” on an add or a signup button on a landing page)
  • CTR (Clickthrough rate) - the percentage of people who see an ad and then click on it.


  • DAU (Daily Active User) - A metric that measures the number of unique users who use a website or app on a daily basis.


  • EBITDA (Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation And Amortization) – a measure of business profitability that discounts existing debt


  • GAAP (Generally Accepted Accounting Principles) - standards addressing the details and legalities of corporate accounting.
  • GTM (Go-to-market) - the process of launching a new product or service into the market.


  • ICP (Ideal Customer Profile) - description of a Customer (sometimes Company) who would be a good match for the business.
  • IRR (Internal Rate of Return) - a measure of the profitability of an investment.


  • KPI (Key Performance Indicator) - a metric that measures business performance against strategic goals.


  • LTV (Lifetime value) - the total amount of revenue that a company expects to receive from a customer over the course of their lifetime.


  • MAU (Monthly Active User) - see “DAU”, but monthly.
  • MQL (Marketing qualified lead) - a lead that has shown interest in a company’s product or service and has been qualified by a marketer.
  • MRR (Monthly recurring revenue) - see “ARR”, but monthly.


  • NPS (Net promoter score) - a measure of customer loyalty, calculated by asking customers how likely they are to recommend a company’s product or service to others on a scale of 0 to 10.
  • NRR (Net revenue retention) - the percentage of revenue that a company retains from its existing customers each year.


  • P&L (Profit and Loss [Statement]) - a document tracking the profit remaining after costs are deducted from revenue
  • PLG (Product-Led Growth) - a GTM strategy that relies on using your product as the main vehicle to acquire, activate, and retain customers.
  • PR (Public Relations) - the process of building and maintaining relationships with the media and other key stakeholders. PR professionals use a variety of tactics to generate positive publicity for their clients, including press releases, media relations, and social media marketing.


  • SEM (Search engine marketing) - the process of buying advertising space on search engines.
  • SEO (Search engine optimization) - the process of improving the ranking of a website in search engine results pages (SERPs).
  • SERP (Search engine results page) - the page that appears when someone searches for a keyword on a search engine.
  • SLA (Service-level agreement) - a contract defining the level of service (in performance, response times, etc) that will be provided
  • SaaS (Software-as-a-service) - is a business model in which software is licensed on a subscription basis.


  • TAM (Total addressable market) - the upper bound on revenue available for capture within a single market.

And don’t stop here! The entire Guide to Growth is free to read and share. It’s important stuff, and I hope you’ll check it out.