This article provides a guide on how to implement a successful media placement strategy. A successful media placement strategy can accelerate marketing efforts and provide a new lead funnel your business. Yet, most companies are not able to fully utilize media placements properly in their marketing efforts.
Overview of Article
- What are Media Placements?
- The First Thing To Know About Digital Media Placements
- 6 Steps to Create a Successful Media Placement Strategy
- The Quality vs. Quantity Debate
- Why Use Digital Media Placements?
What are Media Placements?
Media placements are high-quality articles placed into credible media publications usually through a broker or website owner. Most often, marketers use media placements to build credibility and authority to their target audiences. Today, these publications are often online, but in rare instances can be offline. While companies do not own the media placements, the companies can use the placements to tap into publication credibility. For example, an article on Forbes.com provides more credibility than an article posted on an ordinary company website. For this reason, if utilized correctly, media placements can be a very useful tool for companies growing into new audiences.
The First Thing To Know About Digital Media Placements
The first think you should know about digital media placements is they are not as easy you might think. Thousands of companies are competing for placements in publications. Companies usually begin pitching publication only to realize it is hard and time consuming. Some agencies will pitch hundreds of publications to no avail. Media placements needs to benefit both the publication and company respectfully.
6 Steps to Create a Successful Media Placement Strategy
It is important to understand how to create an effective digital media placements. The wrong placement strategy can cost your marketing team time and money. Below are six steps to follow to ensure your digital media placement strategy is successful:
Step 1: Define your goals
Think about your goals. Your goals should be specific, clear, relevant, and measurable. Do you want to drive traffic to your website? Or, do you want to increase search rankings on Google? Is lead generation important? What is ROI for you? Note that return on investment may not always be sales. Thinking about your goals will help you better utilize digital media placements.
For example, a sock business might set the goal to rank for keyword clusters related to socks. Then, set the goal to get x number of leads from the organic search traffic. Defining goals will help align the media placements with future outcomes.
Step 2: Determine your budget
After understanding your goals, learn more about how much budget your company can spend. No companies budget is the same. If your goals are not reasonable within your budget, you should re-evaluate your goals. Try to find a more reasonable target, where your budget and goal can work together in unison.
If a low-budget startup company wants to get into a top-quality publication like TechCrunch.com, the company will find many barriers. Of course, some massive growth startup companies can be exceptions. However, without a big budget, the company may need to re-evauluate the goal of getting media placements on TechCrunch.
Step 3: Know your audience
Once desired outcomes and budget is known, your company can start thinking about who to build a relationship with through media placements. Knowing your audience is the most important step of building a media placement strategy.
DMNEWs, a media leader in data marketing strategy, explains “by conducting research in advance, and understanding who you are looking to market to, you stand a far greater chance of success on the first ask.”
Your audience can be many things. It could be an investor you are looking to impress. Or, it could be a distributor with access to your customer base. Hone in on an audience, and start researching. Learn more about the sites they visit online. Use tools to find keywords they search for. Brainstorm for messages that would resonate. Understand the pain points of your target. What are they thinking about? What questions do they ask about commonly? Finally, find at how your competition is effectively interacting with audiences. Knowing your audience will not only help you craft a valuable article for your audience, but will also help you find publications that fit your audience.
Step 4: Find credible, brand-aligned publications
Find credible publications that align with your target audience. You should consider the author of the content, the domain authority of the website, and the brand focus of the publication.
When pitching a publication, you want the article to fit the brand of the publication. For example, Entrepreneur.com avoids publishing articles about general lifestyle posts because it would not fit in with their publication brand. An article, “Five Fun Things to Do on The Weekend,” would not be published in Entrepreneur.com. Find where the audiences and brands of the publication and your business align. Then, make a pitch for an article based on this alignment.
Step 5: Create natural, value-adding placements
Craft a natural article that adds value to the audience of the publication. While sponsored content can provide information and credibility to your business, audiences also can perceive sponsored content as ‘fake’ and ‘paid.’ On the other hand, while editorial content lacks as much information a sponsored article could provide, it can prevent the perception of the article being ‘paid’ or ‘fake.’ For this reason, audience tend to trust editorial content more than sponsored content. Our recommendation is to use editorial content with a small section about your company.
Take this example from a Forbes article discussing disruption in payment providers:
“The changes are everywhere. Digital currencies are becoming more reality than dream, real-time payments and new financing solutions are emerging, and more data standard requirements continue to appear. Beyond cloud computing, technologies like 5G, contactless payments such as NFC, and AI and machine learning are maturing fast. (It’s one reason Google Cloud recently established a digital assets team, to help companies tackle another fast-changing area of finance.)”
Notice how Google Cloud added a small blurb about their own company and achievements. Google built trust by providing valuable insights to the Forbes audience, then used the trust to mention a recent development in Google.
Step 6: Share your placement
Once your article is published, your work is not over. After creating a valuable piece of content, you do not want to keep the content hidden. Share the article to your network and existing audience. You will not only demonstrate credibility and expertise, but you also should be helping others if your content is crafted right.
Social media is a great first step for sharing. Share the placement on your own account and on your company page. Then, ask your coworkers to re-share the post for added reach. Your website is the next best step for sharing. Many companies use “featured by” banners to tap into pub authority, and highlight their placements. Email marketing is another great place for the placements. Mention your placements within sales documents, and try to highlight the value for your audience to read. For example, if your placement is about “X Ways to Improve Customer Satisfaction,” then you want to target the particular audience that aligns with this – most likely, a sales manager or a customer service manager.
You are looking for ways to highlight your earned credibility and authority, while also providing value to target audiences.
The Quality vs. Quantity Debate
A big debate in the world of agencies is whether media placements are about quality or quantity. Quality means looking at publication credibility, authority, traffic volume. Quantity means looking at the number of media placements going live.
We find that it is a balance. From a standpoint of PR, high number of low-quality publications will do little for your brand authority. While it may be nice to say, “my company has media placements in 100 publications,” it doesn’t add as much value as saying, “my company was mentioned on The Today Show.” From a standpoint of SEO, a high number of low-quality publications will actually negatively impact your SEO. Google is smart enough to see through ‘black-hat’ practices. That is not to say a high quantity of high quality publications will not help your website. But, getting placed into every top publication is an unrealistic expectation though.
Finding a balance between the two is key. Quantity is good, but never sacrifice credibility of a publication for quantity. Good site design does not always indicate publication quality. Use tools like Moz’s Keyword Extension to determine publication quality. From our research, a domain authority above a 50 is a good indicator of publication quality and credibility. Excellent domain authorities are 65 and above.
Why Use Digital Media Placements?
Digital media placements are a very useful tool for companies growing into new audiences. If audiences have not heard of your product or company, media placements can build necessary added-trust and credibility to smooth the sales process. Good PR can also help startup companies secure future funding from investors and venture capital. Many media placements also have significant SEO value if aimed at targeted, audience-focused keywords/phrases. Imagine getting organic monthly traffic to your website from just ranking for a high volume search results. That is the end goal and dream of most digital marketers. Whether it is with a focus on PR or SEO, media placements can boost the awareness and credibility of your company.
Looking for Digital Media Placements?
This article was written by Adogy, a Digital PR and SEO firm that specializes in digital media placements. Our team of SEO and brand marketing experts can build your digital media placement strategy, and place your company in valuable publications. Schedule a call with us and learn how we can help advocate for your brand.