Paid, earned, and owned media planning for targeted marketing strategies

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media planning

Media planning can be a confusing task for any business owner, but there are three aspects to consider. Understanding Paid, Owned, and Earned media can be a crucial part of formulating a marketing strategy to spur brand awareness. Experienced marketers often achieve great milestones for their clients and brands by leveraging on either one of these aspects within their media planning phases, if not all of them at once! They have their advantages and disadvantages depending on your preferences and circumstances.

How can your efforts with regard to Paid, Owned, and Earned media be measured?

How can they affect each other? It is also crucial to understand how each of these channels is used by your target demographic, to try and find out how best to engage them.

What are they?

Earned Media

Earned media refers to word-of-mouth exposure and advertising gained through SEO-enhanced marketing and content, consumer experience, and PR efforts. The accumulated media includes favorable reviews, mentions in the news, reposts/tweets, and recommendations.

Since earned media is owned by 3rd parties, you may think earned media success is completely out of your hands. That is not true though. If you create good content, then the sky is the limit. Many media planning campaigns utilize this method of raising awareness.

Owned Media

Owned media is best described as content that you create and control including the website of your company and social media profiles. While owned media planning may take on a variety of forms including blogs, case studies and white papers, the primary purpose of this content is to continue to provide value to online site visitors as they move through the funnel. Owned media can also be defined as content on your own platforms, digital assets, and online property, including search engine optimization ( SEO), organic social media, and content marketing. Compared to Paid media, this type of content can be described as falling more under the sphere of organic digital marketing.

SEO is part of owned media and is the process of enhancing your online platforms so that as much organic traffic as possible is generated. Recent SEO developments include such elements as featured snippets and structured data.

The way you measure your own media planning criteria is very much dependent on the type of content you produce and the purpose of it.

You may, for example, use blog content on your site to continue driving new users to your website. If that’s the case you might be looking through your blog to measure the amount of traffic that enters your website. However, you need to ensure that the content you create is valuable, educational, and not overly self-promotional for your own media to be worthwhile.

Paid Media

A paid media planning route often will encompass search ads, display ads as well as methods for advertising on social media, such as the example below. Paid media is mainly used as a platform to drive more leads to your websites via advertising from a widely known website or social media channel. Most companies using paid media will use it to add fresh prospects into their websites which can then be converted through their content on-site.

Social media advertising (which might sometimes also be referred to as targeting social media) is a good example of an activity involving paid media. If you run a startup, consider having an effective strategy with regard to social media marketing that includes paid media. Advertising on social media helps to target social media users, especially when organic reach via social drops.

Don’t overlook organic traction for media planning

Paid media can be excellent for driving traffic to your website. However, its reach and efficiency can be restricted. Much of that is because of the use of ad blockers. The reach of organic media can’t be constrained by plugins that block ads. It’s also a better way of building consumer confidence around your business.



Senior copywriter, content and brand strategist, mentor to startups

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