Earned Media News Coverage, What Is It? How To Get It? Brands Need It, Why?

Earned Media

Earned media refers to publicity gained through public relations efforts other than paid advertising. Unlike paid media, which involves buying advertising space or time, earned media is generated through press coverage, word-of-mouth, news reviews, and other forms of organic, unpaid exposure. Earned media is more credible and trustworthy than paid media because it is perceived as an unbiased, third-party endorsement, making it more influential. Also, free media coverage is much longer-lasting than advertisements, which are fleeting and run only as long as there is money to be spent running them.

Earned media can be challenging to control, as the decision of what stories and when to publish them, is mainly up to the journalists, reviewers, editors, and producers, who report the news. It can be difficult to achieve regular earned news media coverage that is on message, but a great PR agency can help by developing and executing a public relations strategy, leveraging media contacts, and navigating news media with storytelling expertise. Press coverage, particularly earned media, is great for product launches, generating buzz, building awareness and credibility, promoting events and sponsorships, crisis management, and product reviews.

Typically earned media coverage results in news coverage posted to a website that remains online for a very long time (usually longer than the lifetime of the product or service covered in that news story). This creates two added benefits: One is that search engines tend to regard news outlets and their respective content as being highly credible, which can improve how and where a brand’s website ends up populating in search results. The other is that the news story itself can oftentimes end up as a ghost ship landing on page one results, directing search queries to a specific brand’s product or service.

In the end, brands should consider using earned media as part of their communications strategy; it can be highly effective in building brand awareness and visibility, credibility, and trust among audiences and a good PR firm can help your brand achieve a consistent drumbeat of media coverage. Earned media does not involve direct payment for coverage like advertising, but it still may involve costs in terms of engaging a public relations agency to run an ongoing campaign that generates desired news coverage results. Remember, audiences tend to trust unpaid media sources more than traditional advertising because they perceive them as unbiased and credible.

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