Marketing efforts create a two-way street where your audience is actively participating and engaging with your brand. Formulating a comprehensive mix for your business’ marketing strategy requires a precise balance between the five types of media: paid, owned, earned, granted and leased. To succeed on digital platforms, we first need to understand the differences between each type of media and then combine them to craft a complete marketing mix. Using the newfound mediums, we can adopt a new model that fits each media activity into the right category.
The Old School Model: Paid, Owned and Earned
Definition: Paid media is the content a brand creates, and is distributed to an audience developed by a third party. The platform that paid media is distributed through is also controlled by the third party. Paid media efforts, often referred to as “traditional advertising,” target audiences to create brand awareness or acquire new customers.
Use: Paid media activities include advertisements for TV, print, radio, social media and email, as well as product placements, sponsorships, paid search and content syndication. Any time you pay to reach an audience you didn’t generate yourself, it’s considered paid media.
Definition: Owned media is content created by the brand and distributed to a specified audience through a closed platform. Owned media typically targets a community that already exists for your brand and your current customers.
Use: Owned media activities include store signage, product packaging, websites, blogs, newsletters and press releases. While there may be some legal considerations to consider, these are all parts of your business no one can make decisions on but you.
Social media and email marketing were originally placed in this category. Control over a platform is the main reason digital channels need to be withdrawn from owned media and properly placed into the new channels that can accommodate these activities: granted and leased.
Definition: As the most valuable, yet the hardest to gain, earned media is content created by others and distributed to an audience on any platform. These are generally the natural result of public and media relations efforts, advertising campaigns, events and repurposing a brand’s own content.
Use: Whenever someone not associated with your brand comments about you, it’s earned media. It includes coverage and news stories, word of mouth, social media and blog comments about your brand, forums, product reviews and review sites. Brands have limited control over this medium, but the messages are incredibly powerful due to the independence and unbiased opinions of the content creators.
The New School Model: Granted and Leased
Definition: Granted media is any content created and distributed by the brand to an audience through an open platform controlled by multiple third parties.
Use: Granted media includes email marketing, SMS/MMS marketing and organic search. These platforms provide different tools and functionality to their users, allowing them to control their own experiences with the platform. For example, an email provider allows users to block emails they don’t want to receive. The open platform enables multiple participants to be involved with controlling the content in the channel.
Definition: Leased media, or rented media, is defined as content created and distributed by the brand through a closed platform controlled by a third party.
Use: Leased media incorporates social marketing, social customer services, social media platform apps and mobile apps. This is the correct category for social media content. Social networks are able to change rules at any time because they own the platform and can disappear, taking a brand’s content and audience with them. Mobile apps also fit into leased media because brands can’t control mobile apps like they can with product packaging or website content. Apple, Microsoft and Google have the power to approve, distribute and veto mobile applications.
Integrating the Marketing Channels
Each of these media channels plays a critical role in your content strategy. Merging them to work together on any campaign or project will take your content marketing to the next level. This combination of two or more channels is referred to as converged media.
Converged media works well because it’s characterized by a cohesive storyline. All channels work collectively for a brand so that it reaches its customers precisely where, how and when it wants. Take our brand, for example. At Appleton Creative, we apply converged media to create a well-balanced and established marketing content strategy. Our owned media includes the content in our website, blog and newsletters, as well as any collateral we produce for our brand. To incorporate paid media, we utilize pay-per-click advertising. Earned media for Appleton Creative is generated through press releases, special events and philanthropic efforts. We also engage our audience on social media by posting, commenting and designing intriguing content for them to interact with, covering leased media. All the content on each media channel is strategically designed for that channel while still incorporating the same tone, aesthetic and voice of our brand.
It’s time to create the perfect marketing mix for your brand. Appleton Creative is an award-winning, full-service advertising agency that specializes in web design services in Orlando, Florida. Appleton works with local, national and international clients to provide marketing strategies through print, web, social media and video production – all in-house. At Appleton, we want to learn about your business, empower your marketing team and be your creative resource. Your marketing goals are worth a conversation: contact us at 407-246-0092 or firstname.lastname@example.org.