While some advertisers with older mindsets cringe at the changing media landscape, forward-thinking marketers are embracing the concept of earned media, where your product or service is so relevant, that it is being discussed online free of charge. Earned media is not in and of itself a marketing plan but when the thought of as an additional branch to traditional media buys, it can yield massive rewards. Here are some ways to make it work.
Be Relentlessly Active on Social Media
It may seem obvious now, but a relevant product or service must have a formidable social media presence. Marketers should choose the two or three social platforms whose users line up with their customers and put them to use. While “the more content the better” is generally a good rule of thumb to adhere to, smart advertisers need to familiarize themselves with all major platforms. By studying their algorithms and methodology, they can learn how to reach their target audience.
Perhaps the best keep secret in earned media, HARO stands for “Help a Reporter Out.” It is a mailing list that is blasted out three times a day and includes media queries on a variety of topics. When a marketer sees a topic that is relevant to their business, they reach out and answer the question, which results in fresh SEO content and backlinks.
Leverage Relationships by Providing Content
Along the same lines as HARO, discerning marketers need to closely follow influencers and reviewers that impact their industry and seize opportunities to build relationships by becoming a resource. By looking closely, you’ll be ready if a blogger wonders about a solution to a problem that your company can solve. When this window opens, reach out quickly and courteously, and explain how you can help. Mastering this strategy can yield serious dividends!
Finally, it’s crucial to constantly evaluate your earned media strategy. If you are making massive efforts on a social platform and gaining zero traction, you either need to change your approach or invest your time in something more lucrative. On the other hand, if you see success with a certain tactic, analyze it from every angle and learn everything you can from it. If it’s something that can easily be duplicated, ingrain that into your strategy.
Earned media is an elusive target, where the goal lines are always moving. But if you keep these principles in mind, you’ll be better positioned for success.