June 25, 2014

Developing Your Earned Media Strategy

Earned Media StrategyWhen you have content working in tandem with a successful earned media strategy, you’re ensuring that you’re connecting with the right people at the right time.

How do you go about building an effective earned media strategy? I’m glad you asked! Here’s how you pull it all together.

Overall goals

Before you do anything, you’ll need a clear idea of what your goals are in the short and long term. Whether you’re just starting out or your strategy needs an adjustment, having goals can make it easier to figure out how to get where you want to be.

Problems can come up when higher ups in your brand create a set of goals that might be reaching in terms of what your brand can accomplish based on your budget and where you’re currently at now with engagement and reach. It’s necessary to reconcile what you would like to see happen with what’s actually doable, based on a variety of factors.

Those conversations can be tough, especially if you’re faced with a boss who only looks at the bottom line without understanding your level of understanding about whether or not you can get there. It’s best to go in armed with facts and all of the great things you can realistically accomplish with your strategy, rather than trying to sell them on their unrealistic wishlist.

Always have a handle on your audience

Who makes up your audience?

More than who they are – where are they hanging out online, and what appeals to them? Having a thorough understanding of what’s going to appeal to your target audience means you’ll know how to reach them effectively.

What part social media plays

Part of knowing your audience means being clued in about their online hangouts. If chatter about your brand is happening on Twitter and Pinterest and you’re putting most of your energy into Facebook and LinkedIn – that’s a problem.

Social media is sometimes considered an afterthought, or utilized in an impersonal way that can feel spammy. Using social media to rack up a huge number of likes or to share content is one thing, but without an actual strategy, you won’t see much engagement or success with your content. Take the time to understand where your audience hangs out, what time they are most likely to be there, and the type of content they’re looking for – and you’ll see way better results.

The ideal strategy

Ideally, your strategy is one that blends earned, paid and owned media to accomplish your goals in a budget-friendly way. Rather than relying too heavily on one type of media, strategies that use each type to compliment the other are going to work way better.

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