What is earned, paid and owned media differences?


Combining the right balance of paid media, earned media and owned media can take your business from zero to turbo pretty fast when combined with a solid content marketing and social marketing program. All three forms of media are important for your business. Understanding the differences, benefits and how they can work together is key to success in achieving your goals and a positive return on your investment.

The truth is traditional marketing and media are not working like they use to.

Marketers have no guarantee of reaching their ideal and target customer on any medium.Click To Tweet

Organic reach on platforms such as Facebook are declining down to zero.

Although brands invested hundreds, thousands and even millions of dollars on growing their community on Facebook, it's now a pay to play world. The glory days of massive organic reach on Facebook without a solid content, social and conversion plan are dead and gone.

Remember the days of simple media and mass communication? The days marketers would simply buy an ad, tv commercial slot, throw out some direct mail, a few magazine ads, radio spots, measure the response and get on with their day job of herding cats and taming elephants? I'm joking but you get the point.

Media is becoming more complex. It’s not just the explosion of social media, but the fact that according to a Nielsen study that confirmed the most trusted source of information in all countries surveyed world wide is earned media, also described as what use to be known as word of mouth.

Given that 74% of people are visiting the social networks seeking helpful advice and information, this creates incredible opportunity for brands to leverage differing forms of media to increase the odds of their helpful content to actually reach the eyeballs, ears and minds of the people who need and want it.

The problem  is that many are confusing earned media with paid media and owned media. They are blurring them all together and as a results wasting millions of dollars, ticking off their audiences, ruining relationships with thought leaders and influencers and the list goes on.

This blog post and podcast is part of one of our “in a nutshell” mini-series of the Social Zoom Factor podcast. It will provide you a quick summary and understanding in simple english of the 3 types of media you must understand if you want to be successful in the online world and with digital marketing.

Take a listen to the 138th episode of the Social Zoom Factor podcast to get an overview and understanding of paid, earned and owned media.  Be sure to subscribe to the entire series on iTunesStitcher or SoundCloud!

In this 15 minute podcast you will learn: 

  • Overview of paid media, earned media and owned media
  • The difference between paid, earned and owned media
  • How to avoid blurring earned and paid media
  • Why you must be careful in not confusing how and when to use these types of media
  • Why your blog and website is critical to success as a home base and your most important owned media

Supporting Resources:

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This Social Zoom Factor podcast episode is sponsored by the following: