According to a Forbes survey, 85% of tech consumers said articles, reviews, blogs, and videos by experts were the most influential online media when considering a purchase. In the past leveraging this kind of positive earned media beyond the initial hit was a challenge. Media has a shelf life, after all, and authors and readers move quickly onto the next thing. All you could really do after a great earned media score was hope for the best. Fortunately, the modern digital landscape gives today’s PR pros a great deal more control over how many people are exposed to the story, how they find it and how long it remains relevant. Here are a few ways to turn up the volume on your best media mentions.
Sponsored articles are way of advertising on a media outlet in the form of editorial content that looks like it's supposed to be there. This can be effective because association with a publication and exposure to its audience can drive awareness, site traffic, conversions, and leads. In fact, Meredith Levien, the executive vice president of advertising for The New York Times, recently reported that readers of the Times are spending about the same amount of time on advertiser-sponsored posts as on news stories.
Zemanta is another platform that aggregates and indexes your marketing content for multiple content ad formats such as promoted recommendations, in-stream ads, in-text ads and sponsored content.
Also, don’t forget about Adwords. A simple pay-per click campaign may be just the right tool for increasing the reach and extending the life of positive third party mentions of your brand.
Many brands are quick to share positive earned media over their social networks, but do so haphazardly and briefly. A better strategy is to formulate a plan for social amplification that includes sharing the content multiple times, perhaps with different headlines. Tools like Buffer are available to automate posting. Building influencer relationships is also an effective way to extend your reach beyond the audience who already follows your brand.
We don’t really know whether a falling tree in an empty forest makes a sound, but we do know that even the best earned media won’t have an impact if no one sees it. Scoring an executive interview with a journalist and earning a mention is great, but it's only the beginning. Promotion and PR measurement are equally important and should be part of the strategy from the start.