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Owned, Paid, Earned media differences

Owned media, paid media, and earned media, these phrases are often mentioned in digital marketing spheres. Chances are high that you’ve heard of them or even used them yourself if you’re in any way involved in digital marketing. However, what really are the meanings of these phrases? Also, how is each of them important to your digital digital marketing strategy?

Well, to indepthly understand each of the aforementioned phrases, it’s vital to take an individual look into each of them. Here are their explanations:

Owned media

In literal sense, owned media refers to any media that you can lay claim to. That’s a media owned by you as a business or a brand. In a more technical description, an owned media refers to a web property over which you have control and is only identifiable with your business or brand.

An owned media can be a website, a blog, or a social media page. It can also be any other online platform that your brand or business can claim ownership of. A website is however usually the most important owned media that business entities have. Every other platform such as a blog or a content sharing site is just an extension of the website.

Paid media

Like the name suggests, paid media refers to an online media whose services or returns you have to pay for. It in simple refers to advertising and promotion services. The major forms of online advertising are usually through pay per click (PPC) ads and display videos. In addition, you can also make use of Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn ads to promote your products or services.

Furthermore, a business can also pay an influencer to promote their product on their social media account. An influencer here can be a celebrity, an entertainment entity, or any other well known personality or brand. These people can usually promote your products and services by Tweeting about them or sharing them on other social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram.

Earned media

Earned media refers to third party internet shares and promotion of your brand or business. These can be in the form of social media shares, reposts, mentions, and any other unpaid for content sharing by a third party. Other people or brands can usually share your blog posts, video content, or social media posts to their friends or followers. Such an avenue often helps to promote your content among the audience it gets to reach.

Link between owned, paid and earned media

Even though each of them has a distinct meaning and serves a different functioning, there’s a close link among the three digital marketing media owned, paid, and earned. None of these can be entirely successful in marketing your brand online without the support of the other two.

You need earned media such as Facebook shares to get more people to come to your owned media such as a website or a blog. You also need the help of a paid media such as display ads to get more people to visit your website and get more details about your brand or business.

Furthermore, you also cannot in any way get significant earned media if you don’t own a relevant owned media platform such as a website or a blog. It can also happen that you have an owned media content but you don’t get earned media shares because the content in there is below par. The decision on whether or not to promote your brand on earned media is usually influenced by factors such as search engine ranking of your owned media and other organics.
To further explain the interlink among the three media, the quality of your owned media significantly affects the returns you get from paid media. An audience may click on your PPC ad but he or she may not be convinced to buy your product if your website doesn’t contain convincing information.

Incorporating the three media channels in your digital marketing strategy

Proper incorporation of the aforementioned media in your digital marketing strategy can lead to great success. You need to take a careful approach to ensure that your strategy is effective in relation to all the three channels.

You should first of all have a solid owned media. Make sure you have a website and social media page or blog that are well structured and contain relevant content. In regards to your website and blog, you should apply SEO strategies to ensure that you rank high among organic search results. This will lead to increased traffic to your site and in turn boost your earned media shares. Also, you should have captivating and informative social media posts in order to encourage third parties to share them.

On top of having relevant owned media content, you should also invest in paid media such as advertisements to help you reach more target customers. With a suitable application of each of these three tools, you will be well on your way to improving your sales and your business or brand’s performance.