Ok, so I may be slightly biased due to the fact that I’m currently working for this company, but the first thing I thought of when I saw this diagram defining “earned media” as “organic”, was KIND. Largely because a huge part of the culture within KIND has to do with creating and promoting long lasting, organic relationships with customers. And they’re doing an amazing, or should I say #kindawesome, job.
Although, I guess “earned media” may no longer be the most relevant term. In Steve Kerho’s article, “Paid, Earned, And Owned: A Content Paradigm Whose Time Has Passed”, Kerho says that he thinks we should no longer look at media as being paid, earned and owned, but rather as being divided into two categories: paid and shared. He says, “Shared content would be exactly that–shared between both the marketer and consumer. This isn’t to say that the parties equally share in the responsibility to contribute. There would be a primary owner for each channel. In the case of a marketerʼs brand website, clearly the primary owner is the marketer. But there should be relevant and meaningful opportunities for consumers to share in the creation of content for this channel.
KIND is the perfect example of a company with a very successful shared media campaign. Their website and Facebook page are filled not only with ads for their products, but also with tons of videos of projects that they are working on, and clips of people they find who are making others’ days brighter with acts of kindness ranging from simple to huge.
Above is a video promotion by KIND of the project “Waves for Water” founded by Jon Rose. Below, a YouTube clip they promoted on their Facebook page- watch it all the way through, the ending is pretty special!
And I know, media overload. But lastly, below is an image posted on KIND’s Facebook page with the caption, “You can’t really go wrong here”.
All three of these are great examples of shared media used well. The marketers, being the primary owners of the website and Facebook page, are providing all of the content seen on those pages, but they’re also giving their consumers tons of opportunities to get involved. Whether it be by commenting with their favorite KIND fruit&nut bar flavor on the pic above, sharing the YouTube link for the magic video with their friends, or making a donation to the Waves for Water campaign, the customer gets to feel like they have a say. Not to mention that the feel good vibes you get from watching the videos they post create a good mental association with the brand.
All in all, a win-win. A brand that’s quite successfully using shared media to spread the values of healthy eating, healthy living, and sharing kindness with others in even the simplest of ways.