I know… I know… enough with inbound marketing. But there is an important piece of inbound marketing I haven’t mentioned yet… Paid media. First it is important to understand the difference between owned, earned, and paid media. Owned media is precisely what it sounds like: media that you own. It’s all the media channels that you control such as a website, blog site, or twitter. Earned media is when others share your content, and speak about your brand. Essentially earned media is what you earn from paid and owned media. Earned media is extremely important because it is the most credible type of media because it involves the customer. Paid media is when you pay for a third-party channel such as display ads, paid search, and partnerships.

It is important to remember that:

  • These types of media work best when combined together. Earned and paid media will help get the views for owned media. This is called converged media when two or more channels of paid, earned, and owned media are used. This image from Altimeter Group helps explain how converged media works.

Marketo Keynote: Converged Media (Paid+Owned+Earned) #MUS13

  • Paid media may not be the most expensive media. Don’t let the name fool you. Earned media will need to have much time and money invested in order to become earned. Owned media takes time and money as well. Consider the value of time before assuming that one type of media will be more costly than another.
  • Earned media is what is derived from brand behavior

Here is some of the best advice you will receive regarding paid, earned, and owned media:

Don’t give up on paid media.

There has been some talk about how paid media is dead, as we now filter out all “the noise.” However an article by Adotas suggests quite the opposite. It claims that paid media increases organic and viral impressions by up to 200%, and can also decrease negative feedback rates by up to 600%. Paid media has been mentioned several times in articles as a catalyst. What does this mean? It means that paid media is what is going to drive more engagement. So my advice would be do not give up on paid media. It is still plays an important role in converged media.

Go big or go home with owned media.

This means that no longer is a website enough. You need to create a “solar system” of owned media. You are able to engage directly with your customers through social media so utilize this to the fullest extent you can.

Learn to listen and respond to negative and positive feedback to create earned media.

Earned media must be earned and listening to customer feedback is a crucial part.


McKinsey & Company states that as the digital age progresses two new forms of media will emerge: sold and hijacked media. Sold media is when your company invites other marketers to place content on its owned media. Hijacked media is when your company’s campaign/asset is taken hostage by those who oppose it. Although I can agree that sold media may be a new form of media, I do not think that hijacked media will become a whole new form of media. If hijacked media does become relevant enough to become a new form of media then quite a wild ride is ahead of us. So buckle down and get ready.



Beyond paid media: Marketings new vocabulary | McKinsey & Company. (n.d.).      McKinsey & Company | Home Page. Retrieved October 15, 2013, from http://www.mckinsey.com/insights/marketing_sales/beyond_paid_media_marketings_new_vocabulary

Corcoran, S. (n.d.). Defined Earned, Owned, and Paid Media. Forrester Blogs. Retrieved October 15, 2013, from markstaton.files.wordpress.com/2013/10/defining-earned-owned-and-paid-media.pdf

Hobart, r. (n.d.). Study: Paid Media Increases Facebook Organic and Viral Impressions 200%. Adotas, Internet Advertising and Media News. Retrieved October 15, 2013, from http://www.adotas.com/2013/10/study-paid-media-increases-facebook-organic-and-viral-impressions-200/

How to Create Epic Facebook Ads. (n.d.). Hubspot. Retrieved October 15, 2013, from markstaton.files.wordpress.com/2013/10/how_to_create_epic_facebook_ads_pdf-2.pdf

Owyang, J. (n.d.). Marketo Keynote: Converged Media (Paid+Owned+Earned) #MUS13. Upload & Share PowerPoint presentations, documents, infographics. Retrieved October 15, 2013, from http://www.slideshare.net/jeremiah_owyang/marketo-keynote-converged-media-paidownedearned-mus13

Pickering, G. (n.d.). Paid, Owned, and Earned Media – Why classification matters today and tomorrow | Barkley Explore Blog. Barkley Explore Blog. Retrieved October 15, 2013, from http://blog.barkleyus.com/2013/07/15/paid-owned-and-earned-media-why-classification-matters-today-and-tomorrow/

bucks?, t. w. (n.d.). What Is “Owned, Earned and Paid Media”?. Small Business News, Tips, Advice – Small Business Trends. Retrieved October 15, 2013, from http://smallbiztrends.com/2013/08/what-is-owned-earned-paid-media.html