Discovering Your Media Trifecta
Converged Media is the combination of your paid, owned, and earned media. Which begs the question: what is P.O.E. (paid, owned, and earned media)?
Paid media refers to any form of advertising – print, radio, online, direct mail and in-store media – that you are paying money for in order to promote your business. This can also include SEM and PPC services, in platforms such as Google AdWords, and Microsoft Ad Center (Bing Ads on the Yahoo! Bing Network), as well as social media marketing services through Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, and LinkedIn.
Remember, any form of advertising is a tool to support your business goals; it’s not just a branding and awareness tool. Change the way people think and behave. New ad abilities allow for social retargeting based on website visits and location pages, creating a richer customer experience.
Owned media are any properties that you own, such as your business’ physical location, banners, your website, blogs and social media pages. Your email, webinars, e-learning/online training, mobile site, and any physical or virtual events are also part of your owned media.
Earned media involves positive publicity gained through promotional efforts other than advertising. Word of mouth, social sharing via Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and other social sites creates viral sharing, creating earned media. Ultimately, getting press coverage is one of the truest forms of substantial earned media. Additionally, chatter and distribution among blogs and forums also contributes to your earned media efforts.
OK, So Really – What is Converged Media?
Glad you asked. Converged media is the combination of paid, owned, and earned media. Paid and owned media develop into the form of promoted brand content, while paid and earned media can be represented through a sponsored customer. Finally, earned and owned media are shown through other brands and customers sharing your content and defending your brand.
At the end of the day, content is still king. The key to being successful is developing true authentic content that inspires engagement through comments and opinions, stories, photos, tweets and other organic social amplification, aka: online word of mouth. By cultivating content that creates this type of direct contact, brands can drive people to sites that contain other authentic content. That is how you create converged media.
The Road to Convergence
We all must aim to create new experiences that converge or combine our paid, owned, and earned media. All these forms of media can also be thought of through the experience of the customer. With paid media, you are essentially reaching out to strangers, although using online targeting capabilities, you can only hope your audience will respond to your advertising.
With your owned media, you are dealing with your company internally with your employees and externally with your clients and the general public. Additionally, interacting with your customers online and offline is important while managing your owned media.
Gaining earned media helps to develop loyal fans. Some of the best brands’ greatest online advocates are their fans. Understanding who your customers are, where they are, what their problems are, and how you can help solve those problems will help you to develop a media strategy integrating paid, owned, and earned media.