How to Make Your Earned Media More Accountable

Thomas Burg, COO

Fears over fake influencer marketing may soon incite terror similar to what strikes the hearts of ad tech buyers plagued by fraud. However, marketers should take this opportunity to do something we believe strongly in: start demanding real measurement of the value of your earned media programs.

The future is cross-device, visual and ad-blocked. Most companies are going to be in a dogfight to get attention via earned media. The tools that have allowed greater control in the last 15 years have been really around paid media and owned media. For example, with Ad Words, Google let marketers take complete control over their online paid media strategy; HubSpot does  the same for owned media. That points to the last frontier: tools for marketers to measure, evaluate, optimize their earned media.

While it’s frequently discussed, there haven’t been many good ideas about how to actually attribute value to earned media. Marketers tell us they want solutions to understand how their content is performing, and importantly how it's performing relative to competitors. We have seen that it is critical to have in-house capabilities similar to those for paid and owned media to determine ROI for blog posts, social media mentions, likes, pins and re-pins.

In the race to keep pace with audiences across a wide-ranging consumer decision journey, marketing has become an omnichannel endeavor. You must connect the silos between paid, earned and owned, generating insights from each that inform the strategies in the others -- measurement and attribution is required across channels. Focusing on earned media value creates improvements in paid and owned performance as well. If you have really good content, you’re going to promote it on social channels, and run paid campaigns to amplify it.

The web is an increasingly visual medium, with 3 billion-plus new images online every day. Brands face a competitive commerce marketplace where thousands of pieces of their visual content are being shared, liked and engaged with across online channels and social platforms, via PR efforts through online publications, on blogs, etc. It is key that they know who has influence over the sharing and engagement with content, how visual content is traveling the web.

Influencer marketing has come under fire recently, with marketers asking tough questions about what’s real and what isn’t. A deep level of insight about which influencers matter and the ROI of engagement is an important component measuring the value of earned media.

Brands are looking for a higher degree of clarity about the true nature of influencers’ relationships with audiences; who is sharing content, and how and why content it is being shared; and a true measure of value for the influencer marketing budget. It becomes pretty easy to see how brands would benefit by having tools that peel back the perception layer and gets them deep into valuable insights.

ShareIQ has built the first platform that helps brands get a full view of the lifetime value of visual content. Just you can put a dollar value on a paid-media impression, we do the same with earned media through technology that sees the pathway images take from ecommerce, to PR and social; and from influencer to sharer.

As Peter Drucker said, “what gets measured, gets managed.” We are committed to giving our customers the deepest level of insight into how their visual content is measured, so that it can be managed more effectively than ever before.

Learn about new tools that help you get deep data on the value of your earned media and influencer marketing.

Fears over fake influencer marketing may soon incite terror -- and tighten purse strings
Thomas Burg, COO

Thomas is the COO for ShareIQ, and is based in New York City