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What is Earned Media? How Fits into your Content and PR Strategy

How Leads to Earned Media Results for Your Business

Pet businesses and veterinary practices always have information to share with their customers and clients, and referral sources. Most businesses use a combination PR Strategy of three types of media to connect with target audiences: Earned, Paid, and Owned.

This trio of tactics is often called a Content Strategy. It’s important to have this strategy in place. So, how does fit into your strategy?

A press release distributed on to media outlets can attract the interest of particular journalists or bloggers. The resulting editorial coverage counts as “Earned Media.”  Of the three types, it comes with the most credibility because it has been written by a third-party that already has the trust of your target audience. 

It’s helpful to understand the differences amongst Earned, Paid and Owned Media, so let’s take a quick look:

Earned Media: Earned media is described as quotes and articles in media outlets, written by a journalist or other news writer. The article or story, or as we say in the world of PR, the placement or hit, is what is earned.  It can appear in a print newspaper, magazine, blog, online outlet, tv broadcast or radio segment. The “hit” is typically the result of a news writer learning about a service, product, or business from a press release.

That press release caught the writer’s attention and started the process of developing a story. The writer may request interviews or product samples in order to write a complete story or product review. Earned Media is also known as editorial coverage.The idea for the story came from a press release, but the writer has provided her own words and written her own article. Because the journalist is trusted for her balanced opinion, her story is credible and persuasive to readers. 

Owned Media: Owned Media is described as the content that your business has paid for, and controls. For example, content that you add to your website, blog, Facebook and other social media pages, counts as Owned Media. Likewise, branded newsletters, brochures, in store displays and other marketing collateral fits into the Owned Media category. A reader will gain knowledge from Owned Media.  A reader will know that the business itself has written the content. Therefore, there is less credibility to this type of media.

However, it is still critical that company websites and marketing pieces provide factual information as well as differentiators from similar businesses. Owned Media is an essential element to an overall marketing campaign. Press releases become owned media when they are added to your website’s newsroom, for readers to learn more about your business.  

Paid Media:  Paid Media is described as traditional and digital advertising. When your business sets up paid advertising in publications or social media, or purchases and creates post boosts, banner ads, sponsorships, direct mail pieces and other digital or traditional marketing buys, these are all considered Paid Media. Most businesses weave Paid Media into an overall marketing campaign and PR Strategy. It is critical for digital marketing and communications these days. In terms of credibility, it’s lower on the scale because the reader knows that your business has fully created the content and controls its wording, placement, and timing.

To summarize, it’s smart marketing to use a blend of media types in your PR Strategy. offers you the opportunity to tap into the marketing value of “Earned Media” and gain exposure of your business through the words of bloggers and others in the news business. 

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Ideas for News You Can Announce on

Distributing press releases to media outlets is an excellent marketing tool for pet and veterinary brands to reach their target audiences. The readers, viewers and visitors of a media outlet can include your ideal customers and clients, and it’s important to spread the word when your business has news that impacts those target audiences. If you are scratching your head and wondering what news you have to offer, take a look through this list for ideas. Most likely, you will find several news triggers in this list that will provide good content for press releases.

  • Milestone reached: years in business, years at a location, number of products sold, number of customers served, etc.
  • Awards from trade shows or other events
  • Local event participation and/or sponsorships
  • Contest promotion
  • Start-up campaigns from launch and progress to conclusion
  • New product launch
  • New addition to existing product line
  • Charitable Causes: donations to charities, recognition of charity, tie-in charitable cause to product purchases
  • Trade show exhibit
  • Industry speaking engagement
  • Survey results: most/least, top 5, etc.
  • Personnel promotion or appointment
  • Special holiday or seasonal product or service promotions
  • New service launch
  • New addition to services offered
  • Receipt of an industry prize or award makes it easy to get your news read by targeted journalists who cover pet news and veterinary issues. We look forward to seeing your news!

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