The Power of Earned Media and How To Get It

earned media

Table of Contents

Earned media is highly valued because it’s perceived as more authentic; you earn it through merit. In this guide, we’ll walk you through strategies to attract media outlets and influencers, helping your brand gain the recognition it deserves. Whether you’re new to marketing or looking to refine your PR approach, understanding how to leverage this media effectively can significantly enhance your brand’s profile.

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What is Earned Media?

This type of media encompasses the exposure your brand acquires through various organic channels. This could range from being featured in a news piece to receiving a review from a respected blogger or securing a spot on a popular website. Unlike paid promotions, organic media attention cannot be purchased; it is gained by being noteworthy or offering value that others find worth sharing within their networks.

Understanding the Different Types of Media: Earned, Owned, and Paid

To truly grasp the importance of this type of media, it is essential to distinguish it from owned and paid media. Each type serves a unique purpose in an comprehensive marketing strategy, but they do best when utilized together efficiently.

earned media

Earned Media

As previously mentioned, this encompasses any publicity garnered through the efforts of others rather than through paid placements. Positive mentions and word of mouth can lead to a better return on investment over time without the need for additional spending.

Owned Media

Owned media pertains to communication channels under your authority. This includes platforms like your business website, blogs, social media profiles, and email newsletters. Controlled media allows for consistent messaging and content management, enabling effective brand communication.

Paid Media

Invested media includes marketing initiatives that necessitate payment for featuring your brand on other platforms. This encompasses traditional advertising methods like TV and print ads, as well as digital strategies such as PPC campaigns and sponsored posts on social networks. Invested media serves as a direct way to promote content and enhance visibility.

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Benefits of Earned Media

Gaining organic media attention offers several tangible benefits that can directly impact your brand’s marketing strategy:


As organic media is not paid for, it carries an aura of authenticity and trustworthiness. Audiences tend to place more faith in third-party endorsements from reputable sources than in conventional advertisements. This article by Forbes states, “In fact, data from influencer marketing platform MuseFind shows that 92% of consumers trust an influencer more than an advertisement or traditional celebrity endorsement.”


In contrast to paid media that demands ongoing financial resources for sustained visibility, organic media thrives on the natural output of content. For brands that don’t have an extensive budget to put towards marketing initiatives, focusing on gaining media attention organically is a great place to start.

Long-term Impact

Positive mentions and coverage play an important role in shaping your brand’s reputation overtime. These mentions tend to stay relevant, reinforcing your brand image continuously and contributing to long lasting brand recall.

Multiplicative Effect

A single piece of media that’s been earned has the potential to spread naturally across different platforms, reaching a wider audience than originally anticipated. This organic dissemination boosts visibility exponentially without requiring extra resources or expenses.

Enhances Other Media Types

Media that is earned not only stands on its own but also strengthens owned and paid media by elevating the overall credibility of the brand. When consumers see unbiased sources endorsing a brand, they are more inclined to engage positively with all aspects of the brand’s communication.

Why is Earned Media Important for Brands and Individuals?

It plays a large role in shaping how your brand is perceived and recognized, influencing its visibility in meaningful ways. Let’s take a look at exactly why it matters for you and your brand:

Builds Trust and Authority

Organic media attention contributes significantly to building trust with your target audience. Trust serves as a critical factor for differentiation in the increasingly competitive digital market. When reputable sources validate your brand, it enhances your standing as an authority within your industry.

Expands Reach and Influence

Gaining earned media allows you to extend your influence beyond your current circle of connections and followers, reaching out to new demographic groups. This increased reach enables your brand to connect with potential customers who may not have come across you through other marketing channels.

Drives Engagement and Conversion

Media coverage and endorsements often result in more meaningful engagement compared to traditional advertisements. Organic media frequently leads to higher conversion rates as it carries a level of validation that can sway consumer purchasing decisions.

Boosts SEO and Online Presence

Through organic media attention, your search engine optimization (SEO) can receive a significant boost. Backlinks from reputable sources enhance your website’s credibility and can push it to higher positions in search engine rankings, thus increasing your site’s organic traffic.

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Personal Branding

For individuals, organic media plays a big role in shaping their personal brand. It establishes them as authorities or thought leaders in their respective fields, creating opportunities for growth and enhancing their professional reputation.

Examples of Earned Media

Now that we’ve reviewed why gaining organic media attention is so impactful for brands, it’s time to talk about what this can actually look like. Media that is earned can come in many different formats:

1. Media Mentions

When your brand or products are mentioned in articles or segments by prominent news outlets, it represents a significant endorsement. For instance, if a well known tech blog reviews your latest software or a financial magazine features your innovative investment strategy, these mentions serve as trustworthy recommendations to their audience.

2. Social Media Shares

When individuals or influential personalities share your content on social media platforms, it can greatly expand your visibility. For example, if a video tutorial produced by your company goes viral on platforms like Twitter or Instagram or if a satisfied customer posts a positive tweet about your service, it can have a notable impact on how your brand is perceived.

3. Customer Reviews

Positive reviews on platforms such as Yelp, Google or Amazon can contribute to the value of earned media. According to this article by Sprout Social, “Data from the Yale Center for Customer Insights shows almost 90% of`consumers trust online reviews as much as they trust personal recommendations.” High ratings and detailed, positive feedback from customers serve as endorsements that potential customers are likely to trust more than traditional marketing materials.

4. Features in Industry Publications

Being featured in industry publications or online platforms can enhance your credibility within specific sectors. For instance, an article in a reputable industry journal discussing your company’s sustainability practices can establish you as an authority on environmental issues.

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5. Awards and Recognitions

Getting awards or acknowledgments from respected organizations in your field also falls under earned media. These honors are often featured in various media outlets, showcasing your brand’s accomplishments and trustworthiness.

6. User-Generated Content

Encouraging your audience to generate content related to your brand can lead to valuable organic media coverage. This may involve contests, hashtags or campaigns where customers share their own photos, videos or reviews using your products, effectively spreading positive word of mouth.

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7. Expert Endorsements

When well known experts or celebrities support your products or services without payment, their endorsements carry significant weight. This could be a fitness expert mentioning your health product in an interview or a prominent business leader praising your company’s innovation publicly.

These instances not only expand the reach of your brand but also add layers of trust and authenticity that are challenging to achieve through paid or owned media alone. At Otter PR, we’re dedicated to leveraging the power of organic media for creating enduring brand recognition. We’re here to assist you in developing a strategy that turns every opportunity into a foundation for your brand’s success.

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How to Get Earned Media

Securing organic media attention involves employing a strategic approach and maintaining active engagement. Utilizing the following strategies can significantly improve your chances of receiving valuable, organic media coverage.

earned media

1. Create Shareable Content

Be Original: Differentiate yourself by presenting something original. Whether it’s a fresh perspective, an innovative product or a new solution to an existing issue, unique content attracts attention and encourages sharing.

Provide Value: Your content should always cater to the needs of your audience. Whether it involves solving a problem, offering key insights or providing entertainment, valuable content fosters engagement and sharing, which can draw the attention of journalists and influencers.

2. Build Relationships with Journalists and Influencers

Engage Regularly: Consistent interaction is essential for building lasting media relationships. Consider commenting on their articles, sharing their content, and actively participating in social media discussions. Building these relationships over time increases the likelihood that they will show interest in your stories.

Be a Resource: Position yourself as an expert in your field whom others can rely on for information. Share valuable information, unique perspectives, or expert opinions with journalists and influencers to assist them in creating their own content.

3. Leverage Social Media

Promote Strategically: Make use of your social media channels not only for self promotion but also for building connections. Customize your messages to align with the interests of key influencers and journalists in your industry. This targeted approach can enhance the relevance of your content and increase its chances of being noticed.

Engage with Your Audience: Respond to comments, pose questions, and engage in conversations as much as you can. A dynamic social media presence can stimulate organic interest and capture the attention of media platforms.

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4. Monitor Your Brand

Use Tools: Employ monitoring tools such as Google Alerts, Mention or BuzzSumo to stay informed about discussions related to your brand and assess their tone. This can help you promptly identify positive feedback that can be amplified and negative feedback that requires attention.

earned media
earned media

React Quickly: When you receive media coverage or mentions, respond promptly. Acknowledge your supporters and handle any criticisms professionally. Timely responses not only demonstrate attentiveness but also contribute to maintaining a positive public image.

By incorporating these tactics into your day to day marketing activities, you can improve the likelihood of your brand attracting media attention that not only reaches but also connects with your desired audience.

At Otter PR, we specialize in assisting brands like yours in creating engaging content, fostering relationships with key media personalities and maintaining a strong online presence. By teaming up with us, you gain access to a group of experienced professionals committed to enhancing your brand through strategic and impactful public relations initiatives. Let us assist you in turning your brand’s potential into tangible media coverage that resonates with your audience and strengthens your visibility in the market.

Tags: Digital marketing, media relations, Public relations
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About Otter PR

Rated the #1 PR Firm in the US by Clutch and International Business Times, Otter PR adds a modern spin to traditional PR. As the only Tier-1 PR firm the guarantees coverage every month, and offers month-to-month service, it no wonder that companies like Alibaba, Boomers, and Bitcoin of America trust Otter PR.

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