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What is owned, paid, and earned media?

by De-de Mulligan

Digital Marketing Excels With These Three

When it comes to finalizing your search strategy, our clients often lean on owned channels to pave the lead generation way. However, it has been my experience if you want to move the proverbial search needle a cohesive strategy that encompasses all three is your best bet to drive more individuals to your website, grow your followers, and establish your industry authority.

Learn more about each term, why it’s essential, and real examples of combining these terms.


What is Owned Media?

Owned is the content you (or your agency) produces and holds. It’s your website, blogs, social media accounts, and SEO. While it’s true, you don’t technically own Wordpress or YouTube; you do have complete control over the messaging you deliver on these channels.

For it to work most effectively, you must understand your content strategy, pinpoint your audience, and define your buyer’s journey.


Why is Owned Media Important?

When you follow a content calendar and have regular updates to your websites, valuable blogs, and engaging social media posts, your content has a chance to be indexed and populated. Without regular owned content, users will speculate that your business is closed or out of step with current industry trends. Lastly, it impacts your brand reputation.


What is Paid Media?

Paid are those search ads you see on Google and Bing. It’s also the boosting on Facebook and sponsoring on other social media channels. This is where retargeting comes in – you know when you’re on a website for a length of time and the website “follows” you around to other sites. Paid media also falls under paying influencers to promote your brand and messaging on social channels.

With paid, you (or your agency) has to have a good understanding of Search Engine Marking, which includes PPC and CTR.


Why is Paid Media Important?

When you pay for your ad to appear before individuals who don’t know your company exists AND you beat out your competition in the process, you have the potential to drive more leads to your website.


Besides, on smartphones, Google Ads appear before organic traffic, which can impact your ability to be seen above the fold.


Lastly, on Facebook, your posts will not appear on your buyer personas timeline without sponsorship.


However, please remember that budgets for paid media can be high, so the ability to scale is often directly related to your budget.


What is Earned Media?

Earned can be anything from your press release that’s picked up by the news media to someone writing a review about your company. However, you don’t have control over what agencies pick up your announcements or what users say about your products.


Why is Earned Media Important?

It’s free advertising, and it helps build trust with your audience.


Four Tips for Owned, Paid and Earned Media

  1. Owned media takes time to develop the right messaging to the right audience. Count on several months, if not years of consistent content production for it to occur.
  2. Paid media takes a reasonably large budget, which is becoming higher as keywords become more competitive.
  3. Remember to write press releases when you announce a new product, write a case study, or want to highlight something unique at your company.
  4. Continue to try hybrid approaches – for example:
    1. When you write a white paper, pitch it to your news outlets (earned) and promote it on social media (paid).
    2. Write a blog (owned) and post your link on social media (owned), yet sponsor the content (paid).



Need a Digital Plan?

Contact Mulligan Management Group at 330-472-7673! We are ready to help you with a great plan that will include all of the above!

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