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Continuing our discussion on public relations, we turn our attention to the relative merits of owned media vs. paid or earned media. These are the three primary media types you will work with as you plan and execute your public relations strategy. Your media relations strategies should make provision for careful and targeted use of all three of these.

Defining the different media types

Earned media is publicity that is gained from methods other than paid advertising. On the other hand, paid media is the exposure that you pay for through advertising. Owned media refers to the platforms you have set up to promote yourself, such as your website and blog. Your owned media should be treated as the destination, while earned and paid media both work as the means to take your audience to that destination.

When members of the public freely and voluntarily share your content or talk about your brand on social media or other platforms, that counts as earned media too. Earned media is the hardest to get and possibly the most valuable. In the world of digital marketing, you could call SEO earned media too. To increase your search engine rankings, you need to have authority in your field, and you need to offer content that proves its own value to your target audience. By creating optimized content that search engines will reward with good rankings, you earn your media exposure.

The question of owned media vs. paid or earned media is not an either-or proposition. As you plan your public relations strategy, you should make provision for all three types of media. They all work together to maximize your brand’s exposure.

Listen to the podcast to find out more about the relative merits and interactions of owned media vs. paid media vs. earned media and all other aspects of public relations.

Owned media vs. paid media vs. earned media