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    Owned, Earned & Paid Digital Media: Definition & Differences

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    • 0:04 The Digital Media Mix
    • 1:01 Owned Digital Media
    • 1:45 Paid Digital Media
    • 2:47 Earned Digital Media
    • 4:01 Integrated Marketing
    • 4:43 Lesson Summary
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    Lesson Transcript
    Instructor: Beth Hendricks

    Beth holds a master's degree in integrated marketing www.thecommoditycodehq.communications, and has worked in journalism and marketing throughout her career.

    Owned, earned, and paid digital media all have a place in marketing, despite their differences. In this lesson, we'll explore each one, look at some examples, and see how they differ in terms of delivery.

    The Digital Media Mix

    Remember a few years ago, when Starbucks' red cups around the holiday season caused quite an uproar? The cups, deemed controversial by some, were discussed in some circles for their apparent snub of the religious significance of the holiday season.

    Regardless, Starbucks soldiered on, promoting the red cups (and their holiday themed drinks) as the official start of the holiday season on both its corporate website and its social media channels. And, they got not just a little, but a whole lot of free publicity, thanks to the millions of people engaging in conversations about the now-famous red cups on social media.

    What Starbucks was able to do then (and continues to do today) is leverage their digital media into a sophisticated balance of owned, earned and paid strategies. You may be scratching your head, thinking to yourself, ''I thought all digital media was essentially the same!'' Well, not exactly. Let's take a closer look at this trio.

    Owned Digital Media

    Owned digital media means just what it says: you own it. These are digital media channels and platforms that you control and can build them how you see fit. Share photos, interesting tidbits, coupons - you have the ultimate say in what happens on these platforms. These are not platforms you pay for (outside of possible web hosting fees). You can sign up and participate in any way you see fit.

    Examples of owned digital media could include your www.thecommoditycodehq.company website, your mobile site or smartphone application, a corporate blog, social media channels, eBooks, email marketing, white papers, even webinars. The key here is that you're the one in control of the voice of the brand that people on the outside see.

    Paid Digital Media

    Paid digital media includes digital platforms that you pay for or pay to send your messages out to the masses. In a more traditional marketing era, paid media would include things like advertisements you'd run in a newspaper or on television; today, brands are shifting their paid media focus to digital channels in an effort to promote content and reach a larger audience. Paid media means you have to pull out your credit card for advertising and marketing efforts.

    Some examples of paid digital media are the following: For starters, it could include the use of some of your owned media - with a twist. For example, you can pay to boost and promote a social media post to reach more people. Yes, technically you ''own'' the channel, but you're using a paid tactic to disseminate your message. Other paid media possibilities include display ads (which appear on websites from Amazon to popular news sites) and pay-per-click ads, ads that show up in search engines that charge advertisers by the click.

    Earned Digital Media

    This is the segment of the owned-paid-earned media strategy that all marketers covet, and, it's the one thing you can't really control. Earned digital media is that publicity you ''earn'' from the public or the press. Your customers talked about your product, or if you're really lucky the general population as a whole, and this has given you earned media. Sometimes, it may be good and sometimes, it may be bad, but as someone once said, ''there's no such thing as bad publicity.''

    Earned media usually shows up in the form of word-of-mouth marketing, or when people are talking about you, or when something about your brand has gone viral, such as a cute www.thecommoditycodehq.commercial you've created or a photo shared thousands of times over on social media. The key here is that customers control the messaging - good or bad.

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