The internet offers users access to thousands of businesses as they search for products and services. How can you make your company stand out form among other small businesses? Short answer: Earned media. When potential clients see your business featured in a news story, it increases the credibility and value of your brand.
Our team at AZ Media Maven is made up of several former journalists who understand precisely the type of content news organizations are seeking. Here is some useful information we’ve learned over the years about earned media and why it is essential to any business owner’s marketing plans.
What is earned media?
You might be more familiar with the terms such as “publicity” or free media, both of which describe earned media. It refers to media references for which you have not paid for the placement. Earned media is when a news publication, magazine, television station or radio show features you or your business in a news story. It also includes non-paid mentions on social media platforms, such as Yelp or Twitter.
Earned media encompasses:
- Newspaper articles
- Trade publication articles
- Product roundups
- Magazine articles
- Radio broadcasts
- Mentions on social media
- Television programs
- Product reviews
- Guest columns for publications or blogs
The defining characteristic connecting these examples is that none of them were purchased or created by the brand featured within them. Don’t confuse “earned media” with “pay to play.” Publications or broadcasts that operate under a “pay to play” model require business owners to pay for an ad in exchange for a featured article. Sometimes the article itself requires payment. These are articles are often referred to as “advertorial” because the content usually reflects very favorably for the business.
In earned media, your business might be mentioned because it’s participating in a charity fundraiser, or because you are an expert in your field, so the reporter quotes your input in a news story. You or your business are being featured because of your newsworthiness and not because you have paid to be mentioned.
Earned media gives your business legitimacy
Content created in-house to promote a brand is important, but organic feedback and coverage is even more so in developing credibility among potential clients. Individuals interested in your business will see this kind of media as an indication that it lives up to the hype. Additionally, individuals who weren’t necessarily interested in your business might see earned media about it as they search for information in the field and decide to work with you.
At AZ Media Maven, we advise our clients to have an area on their websites dedicated to highlighting their earned media, whether it’s an impressive review from a food critic for a restaurant, or tips on safe driving from a driving school. The more earned media you are show, the more impressive your business will be to potential clients.
Earned media is a chance to spread your business’ reach without paying for the publicity, and in a way is authentic to consumers. Are you interested in learning more about this type of media? AZ Media Maven can help you craft news releases that will garner you the earned media your business deserves. Schedule a call today.
AZ Media Maven is based in Laveen, AZ, a suburban village in the greater Phoenix area. Owner Rose Tring has more than 30 years of journalism experience as an editor and writer, many of those years in business news. AZ Media Maven launched in 2012 to serve other business owners in learning how to best use social media and to provide affordable public relation services. Reach AZ Media Maven at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (602) 373-8371.