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Andy Betts
M Posted 10 years ago
t 3 min read

As Google shifts its focus to quality and relevancy, content marketing adoption has soared. It is no coincidence that the increasing focus on content marketing closely follows the significant Google algorithmic changes aiming to give users a better search experience. The convergence of paid, owned, and earned media caused many a debate on how people pitch SEO. The rise of Earned Media is all about content and engagement driven through new technology. Lisa Williams, Director of Paid, Owned and Earned Media at Rosetta shared some insights into the relationship between these channels.

Here is what Lisa had to say:

Search isn't just about the search engines anymore. It's about the discovery process people embark upon. They do it in a lot of channels, on a lot of platforms, and on a lot of devices. I'm really inspired that search is becoming more and more connected to content and story telling.

When I began working in online marketing in 1996, the content team would create an anchor piece and then rework it for product content, email, catalog, the auction, and even print pieces. Starting with the communication first, then how that communication gets shared in multiple channels, where the target market lives, allows for a more holistic approach of being in the customer journey - in the right place at the right time. I really see a big opportunity in 2013 to build upon the integration of Paid, Owned and Earned Media. It's powerful and impactful when marketers leverage Owned and Earned Media. It helps push the big "aha" moment for clients when they realize the revenue potential of "Earning" and "Owning" market share.

When a client says "we want to rank number one for this keyword (or phrase)" and we ask "what have you done as a brand to Earn or Own that position?" it helps recalibrate their thinking about gaining market share from Earned and Owned Media. That holistic approach ensures the brand is present in the customer journey. The other "aha" moment is the recognition that Earned and Owned Media have longevity, and that you don't pay for every single click the way you do with Paid Media. That said, the Paid and Display co-exposure with Natural Search is a powerful combination. This image from Altimeter Group helps illustrate how Paid, Owned and Earned Media are integrated. This should impact not only how we execute, but how we measure.

Providing great content that is relevant, linked to, shared, and endorsed fuels a winning strategy. Great content strategists, like Joe Pulizzi of The Content Marketing Institute (CMI), understand that the value of content isn't only in measuring the performance of just a single piece of content, but includes a body of work that adds enormous value for the target customer. It is important to show customers how content generates links, engagement, endorsement and sharing, and how that, in turn, influences Natural Search and Search Discovery. That type of measurement also helps clients understand that content isn't perfectly transactional like Paid, but it does generate KPI's the CMO can comfortably share. That makes content not just a mission-critical business asset, but also a strategy against which CMO’s can measure.

About Lisa Williams

Lisa’s past experience includes 17 years as an online marketer with a focus on strategic planning and implementation of Search and Owned Media. Lisa works with Fortune 500 clients to help bridge the gap between content, search and social, as well as integrating personas with targeted search marketing outreach. Lisa is on the SEMpdx Advisory Board and President and Founder of SEMCLE. Lisa will be speaking on the Social and Search panel at Share13 alongside Todd Friesen from Salesforce and Sarah Synder from Google.

Share13 is in San Francisco on August 22-23.