The Media Mix: Paid, Owned, Earned (& Shared) – Is It Still Relevant?
Dec 15, 2014
On the first Thursday of every month, we host a Content Marketing Special Interest Group (SIG) discussion for the Triangle AMA. This month, the topic was about whether the “paid, owned, earned (& shared)” model is still relevant for brands when thinking about how their message is disseminated.
It’s a topic we’ve been thinking about a lot lately. Mostly because we’re always creating and re-creating content maps — ways for clients to visualize the different pieces of content they have placed in the world, and where the pieces created by others about them live. It helps them understand why and how and where to place new content… and how to use or respond to or promote the content other’s place about them… and what impact all that content has… and see how different communications relate to each other in the digital space.
But, most recently, we’ve been noticing how it’s becoming more and more difficult to define content that is definitively one (like owned), but not another (like earned).
That really isn’t surprising. The idea that something could be both “owned” and “earned” is the exact reason people started talking about “shared” in the first place. What is surprising, though, is how fast ALL things are becoming shared. And if we accept that truth — that all things are collapsing into one middle — then it stands to reason it’s harder to discern what you really own, or earn, or pay for. And you can see why those maps become less useful.
So… using the Content Marketing SIG as a launch point, we’re setting out to explore new models. The notes — captured on whiteboard during the discussion — are below. (Click the image to see a much larger version or save and share a version via Pinterest.) We hope they’re useful to you in exploring new maps. And we’ll be putting a few new ideas out there ourselves over the next few weeks.
Thanks to all who were a part of the conversation! We hope you’ll weigh in with more thoughts via the comments section.
Watching TV as a kid, I used to run to the bathroom during the shows so I could make it back for the commercials. Those days launched me down a path that included layout and writing for the college paper; communications strategy for political campaigns; marketing strategy and graphic design for Gensler (a global design and architecture firm); and the implementation of new programming, animation and design techniques for Centerline. Today I specialize in content marketing strategy and building digital deliverables to execute those strategies. But it’s about more than just creating killer digital content. At Centerline, we help clients succeed in the digital marketplace using a three-pronged approach: strategic (message creation, brand strategy), tactical (design, development), and analytical (measurement and adaptation). This experience-tested approach allows me to build campaigns that are both well-designed and effective for clients like IBM, GE and National Instruments.