Digital Marketing Services: Owned, Earned, & Paid Media

The world of digital marketing services is a beautiful and complicated one. It’s beautiful because businesses now have the ability to reach more people than ever before. They have more avenues for communication than we thought possible even just a few decades ago. The marketing landscape has changed and we’ve had to adjust our mindsets and initiatives to favor data and digital communication. We’re able to think bigger, communicate more strategically and specifically, and execute on a larger scale. 

All of these characteristics make it more complicated. We have to become masters in many different realms of owned, earned, and paid media – content, social media, email, SEO, and paid. 


Types of Digital Marketing Services for Business

When done with strategic planning, perfect execution, and data-driven insights, digital marketing can prove big benefits for your business. You can better generate, activate, and convert your audience into customers, leading to a big ROI and an increase in revenue. Digital marketing is broken up into three media categories: owned, earned, and paid. I want to break down each and the different tactics used for all three media types.


Owned Media

Your brand has complete control over owned media and your goal is to have your audience end up here as their final destination. This is your website, your company blog, your social media accounts, your company newsletter, and perhaps even your mobile app. Having quality owned media property will also lead to more earned media opportunities.



In the realm of digital marketing, there is a huge push for content marketing. Content marketing is revolutionizing the sales pipeline and flipping it on its head. Your efforts are aimed at offering solutions to the problems of your ideal buyer persona. In your buyer’s pursuit of finding a solution, they find your helpful content, motivating them to leave their information, contact you, or keep you top-of-mind. With that being said, content creation is HUGE, and without it, your business has limited credibility and limited ways to capture inbound leads.

A few of our favorite content marketing tactics are:

  • Blogging 
  • Downloadable content
  • Webinars 

All of these content types are controlled by your business. They should align with your marketing and sales efforts and when optimized, they will help you gain earned media.


Social Media

Nearly half of the world’s population and 90 percent of businesses actively use social media each day. Businesses are taking advantage of the sheer volume of people active on these networks, putting their brands in front of current and potential customers. Social media is not only a great way to raise brand awareness and keep followers up-to-date, but it acts as a great avenue for engagement. You can start a conversation, answer questions, or ask questions. 

Each social platform should have brand uniformity while maintaining specific messaging to reach the attainable target audience. For more social media best practices, check out this blog.



Email is a powerful tool that can help you achieve a wide range of goals. Whether you want to keep your customers up-to-date on company news, drive leads down your sales pipeline, or provide them with an exclusive offer, email can get the job done.


Earned Media

While owned media is the desired destination, earned media is how you help them get there. Earned media can come in the form of search engine rankings, shares on social media, press mentions, and 3rd party backlinks to your content. 



SEO is the digital marketing tactic used to build your library of earned media. Combining SEO and owned media will drive backlinks, reviews, page authority, shares, comments, and eventually ranking on page one of Google.

To understand search engine optimization (SEO), think of the internet as a library, search engines as librarians, and yourself as an author. In this instance, the science of SEO is writing your book in a way that the librarian can easily interpret, allowing them to place your book in the correct section of the library so people looking for your book or genre can easily find it. Your goal is to be a national bestseller, right? Appealing to the librarian and the people who read your book is your number one priority. All of your owned media should institute SEO best practices.



Another great tactic to drive earned media (especially on social) is engagement. If you want others to engage with your content, follow you, and leave great reviews, they probably would like you to do the same. There is no shame in initiating the conversation. Not only will this put your brand in front of the user’s eyes who you are engaging with, but everyone who could engage with them as well.


Paid Media

Paid media is pretty self-explanatory. It’s when you pay to leverage a third-party channel. This can be done on search engines, such as Google Ads and Bing Ads, or on social media channels like Facebook and LinkedIn. 

There are a lot of different ad types and outlets. It’s important to test as many types and outlets as possible so you can find which is right for your business. For example, a restaurant may find that Instagram ads have the greatest ROI for their business instead of Google Ads. Knowing that, they can focus their paid media efforts to Instagram and not waste money down other avenues.

WordStream has a great guide to all the different online ad types and formats.


Are Your Ready to Use Digital Marketing Services for Your Business?

If you think boosting your digital marketing strategy would be beneficial to your business, just make sure you plan strategically. You don’t have to start with every tactic and type of media! It could be beneficial to start with one. I suggest beginning with owned media, since you have complete control over it. You can refine your messaging, A/B test, and optimize your strategy and then move on to earned and paid media. If your resources are limited and a comprehensive digital marketing strategy is a bit out of scope, we have extensive experience in branding, strategic communication, and building out strategic digital marketing ecosystems for businesses. Just contact us here and we will be in touch!