Tuesday 31 May 2011

Paid Owned Earned [image and video] - how it all works

The media landscape is now being bucketed into three distinct areas - Paid Owned and Earned.

Here is the explanation slide I have been using for a while:

Paid Owned Earned

Paid is the traditional method of paying to place an ad, a 'go here now' message.

Owned was traditionally a store or product packaging, then encompassed websites and microsites, before more recently becoming social network pages and apps.

Earned was traditionally conversation around a watercooler or journalists being persuaded to write nice things. Earned has grown in importance as it now covers a whole range of digital channels too, like blogs, forums, YouTube, social networks and so on - the idea that anyone can post, comment, link to or share.

The key to this ecosystem is the arrows between each bucket. Nothing can be thought of in isolation now, Paid drives Owned which can drive Earned, but things are more complicated than this. A Paid execution can also drive Earned conversation which can then drive Owned which can then drive further Earned, Earned conversations can show up in natural Search results that then help Paid Search to work harder etc etc. There is also a huge feedback loop now which allows the conversation to be mined for insight that can assist in the formulation of channel specific or overall strategy.

The world may be about Paid Owned and Earned, but the key is in understanding the links between them and being able to think and plan across all 3 areas. I presented thoughts on this at a recent IAA conference in London, the IAA Digital Download:

The advertising landscape is now made up of Paid Owned Earned and everything links together.....


  1. Nick this is a nice piece which I'll take and re-post onto the blog with your permission.

  2. Great article Nick, I can already think of several clients and colleagues who I'll share this with. Cheers :)


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