Don’t underestimate the importance of utilising Paid, Earned and Owned media.

Marketing /

March 2023

According to the latest Next&Co annual Digital Media Wastage report, Australian advertisers wasted 41% of their overall digital marketing spend in 2022. This equates to $5.46 billion of digital ad spending down the drain in 2022, up from $3 billion wasted in 2021. The digital channels with the biggest waste were Facebook and Google.

The majority of the waste of money came from businesses’ internal resources not being up to date with the best practices for running profitable, sustainable marketing campaigns. In plainer terms, businesses struggled to adapt to the updates to Facebook’s or Google’s advertising platform and the ever-changing algorithm and don’t have the resources to properly research their target audience and then connect with them through various channels and platforms, be it organic or paid, to build trust and legitimacy around their brand. You can throw all the money in the world at an ad, but if it’s not reaching your target audience, then that is a complete waste of your precious time and money.

To reach the most amount of people, you must utilise all three media channels, owned, paid, and earned, as a part of your marketing strategy. People respond best to multi-platform marketing campaigns. We have short attention spans and don’t like spending a lot of time on one piece of content or platform. So, if we see the same thing referenced on multiple platforms over several posts and ads, we’re more likely to remember it. Through this multi-platform strategy, your focus as a business should always be on learning who your target audience is and better meeting their needs. So that when you do use paid marketing, you are getting a real return on your investment.

What exactly do we mean when we say owned, paid, or earned media content?



1. Owned Media

Owned media is content that you create yourself, you own, and can publish for free. You can fully control who sees this content, which makes it an effective tool in your marketing strategy. With your own content, you can always be creating it and sharing it with your audience in an organic way. This can include any information you publish on your website, blog posts, email marketing, and social media posts.


2. Paid Media

Paid media is content that you cannot publish for free. This can include traditional advertising such as print, radio, tv ads, or billboards but also social media ads, google ads, ads with a cost per click and ads displayed on websites. It can also include paid collaborations with influencers. Paid marketing is highly effective at reaching your target audience segment based on the topics they’re most interested in due to its advanced targeting options.


3. Earned Media

Earned media is not as well-known as owned or paid media. It is a free form of marketing that involves any content where other people are talking or posting about you. This means reviews, ambassadors, and fans that share or repost your content of their own volition. It also includes SEO; your organic rankings in search engine results. It is a very important form of marketing as this content helps build trust in your business, your products or services, and the legitimacy of your brand.

Besides learning who your target audience is and making content that is relevant to them. Your core aim in all marketing efforts, whether it be paid or free, should be to drive traffic back to your own channels such as your website. In addition, Google will credit the unique content you create to your domain and it will help with your SEO ranking.


So how do you do this?

Publish all content you create to your website first and then repurpose the content to social media. This way your website is the original creator and the social media channel isn’t given credit. Also, by regularly providing quality content on your website and other channels, you can demonstrate expertise in various topics related to your industry which aids in building respect, trust, and loyalty among your audience and peers.

Further to publishing on your website regularly, there is a holy grail marketing tool that all businesses need to use more.

Email marketing is so often quick to be dismissed over new fresher types of content creation such as social media SEO or affiliate marketing. Email is one of the oldest forms of digital communication and is still the king of all marketing channels. It has a user base of over 4.5 billion people that continues to grow every year. You own your connections and there is no need to worry about the algorithm blocking your content or ruining your reach. Businesses should place a larger focus on email marketing as it’s free and highly underutilized. You can highlight the content you want, drive all traffic back to your website with click-throughs, demonstrate brand knowledge through content on a specific topic that the email focuses on, and drive traffic to your socials and various other platforms. You can highlight owned, paid, and earned content in email marketing and reach your target audience directly as they had to opt-in to the email.

In this digital age, building a successful business is not only created by offering a great product or service. It’s imperative that you effectively create content and market it with the most appropriate strategy to reach your target audience.

If you really want to ensure you have a competitive edge over your competitors, it may be worthwhile talking to a professional digital marketing agency like Evolution. We can take all the branding and marketing off your plate, so you can solely focus on what you do best, creating your product or providing your service. Give us a call to talk about evolving your business on 03 5222 3328 or send us an email at to organise a meeting to discuss your next move.

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