Guest Post

Written by Taran Soodan

January 29, 2021

With increasing customer acquisition costs and organic reach in decline on social media platforms, brands have to spend more money than ever to acquire customers. Not every business has the war chest needed to outspend the competition, so many companies are now shifting towards owned marketing to grow their customer base and keep them loyal.

What is owned marketing?

Owned marketing is a type of marketing in which brands promote products and services using the channels that are “owned” by the brand. They do this primarily to lower customer acquisition costs and to prevent overreliance on paid advertising.

Owned marketing channels

Owned marketing channels do not require you to pay for promotion and can include platforms like your website, app, email, social media pages, SMS, and forums that you might have created. Below are examples of ways businesses can capitalize on owned marketing.

Content Marketing

Content marketing involves creating content that existing or potential customers would find interesting. The content doesn’t have to be a detailed advertisement of the product; in fact, it’s better if it’s in the form of infographics, photos, statistics, instructional text, or anything that may result in customer awareness or acquisition. Content marketing is predominantly used to promote your product in a roundabout way: it provides information on a topic relevant to your customers and introduces them to your brand.

Use your website or social media channels for content marketing promotion. Pro tip: When using social media channels, ensure you thoroughly research what type of content works the best on each channel.

For example, infographics may prove more fruitful when shared through a particular social media channel, but not others. The same goes for other types of content. To ensure success for your owned media content marketing strategy, you must invest enough time and energy in creating and testing the strategy and stay focused on hitting your goals.

Email marketing

Email marketing offers a greater degree of personalization than content marketing and is an excellent tool for establishing long-term relationships with customers. Through email, you can send invites to potential customers based on their website activity, deliver lead magnets like ebooks and webinars, share subscription information, or promote new products or campaigns.

Though its click-through rates may pale in comparison to other mediums like SMS, email is still a tried-and-true channel with impressive conversion rates. It’s also superior when it comes to sharing longer messages.

SMS marketing

An SAP survey revealed that 76% of consumers say that they are more likely to view a message quickly if it is in the form of an SMS text rather than an email. Furthermore, 64% would prefer companies use SMS for communication more than they already do.

SMS marketing is convenient for users, and as a result, it delivers high conversion and click-through rates. Sending a call to action through SMS makes it super easy for the receiver to respond—they usually just have to tap out a few words on their phone. You can also inform potential customers in your vicinity of a new product or an upcoming event through close-range (proximity) marketing. Like email, SMS marketing software also allows you to segment and target your customers more precisely.

Facebook Messenger

Facebook Messenger uses chatbots to help you connect with existing customers or convert new ones. You can use the chatbots to inform users about your customer support’s availability or schedule chat blasts to promote new products as they’re launched.

When using Facebook Messenger for marketing, you can use the information collected through your Facebook page to create custom audiences that precisely target customers. You can deploy push marketing strategies using Messenger to deliver promotional content or “pull in” your customers by offering them the content they are looking for.

Organic social media

Businesses can use social media accounts for both paid and owned marketing. You have the option to create paid ads and show them to a targeted audience, of course, but that is not the only way to increase your reach. 

With organic marketing, the platform’s promotion service will not amplify your message, but you can still increase your reach by creating relevant content and using the right keywords and hashtags. The easy shareability of social media posts can convert your owned marketing into “earned” marketing—when the content you create is appealing and interesting enough for social media users to share it further through social media mentions. In this situation, the responsibility of marketing promotion is no longer on your shoulders.

Your website

With the right SEO knowledge and quality content that adds value for users, your website can go a long way as a marketing channel. You can use as many media types as you want on your website; a good marketing strategy employs multiple mediums like images, infographics, texts, and videos to create content. Having a variety of content types is important because users have varied content preferences, and mixing up the mediums will allow you to reach a diverse audience.

Referral marketing

Referral marketing is when a company motivates its existing customers to promote its brand or products by word of mouth and recommendation. This type of marketing can be beneficial, as the recommendation source is more credible—it’s not the company that creates the products but the customers who use them. As a result, potential customers are much less likely to question the authenticity of such endorsements. This is one reason why referral marketing leads convert 30% better than other types of leads.

Reviews

Like referral marketing, customer reviews on your website can also be a great marketing strategy. While some business owners resort to using fake reviews on their websites to promote their brand, don’t be tempted to do so yourself. This practice is not only unethical but is also of little use. Today’s customer knows the difference between a fake review and an authentic review when they see it. Moreover, there is software available, like FakeSpot, that can help customers reveal a review’s authenticity. 

As long as the reviews are authentic, they will convince customers that your brand is worthwhile. They can also clue you into what product features are popular among your customers and what they’d like to see you improve.

The benefits of owned marketing

Owned marketing has enough benefits to make it worth including as a part of your digital marketing strategy. Here are some of its main advantages:

Lower conversion costs

When you use your brand’s channels for marketing your product you do not need to pay for running promotional content. This means that if you get users to convert through these channels, the acquisition cost is zero. If you are a small business and do not have the resources to spend a fortune on advertising, you can benefit greatly from leveraging the marketing channels that you own yourself.

However, business owners must put genuine effort into creating marketing content to deploy an owned marketing strategy. An essential part of a successful marketing plan is setting SMART (i.e., specific and measurable) goals, regardless of the type of media you use.

Control your branding and messaging

If you control the brand channels, you can enjoy complete control over what you are promoting, whom you are targeting, when you are promoting, and how long you want the promotion or any other marketing content to stay. Paid channels limit your content’s visibility to a specific time period, whereas your owned channels keep the content online indefinitely.

Reduce reliance on paid promotion

Paid ads are a great way to promote growth, but with growing ad costs, they can take a big chunk out of your bottom line. Marketing through your own channels like your website, blog, or app can reduce your reliance on paid media. You can also use a social media platform or your YouTube channel to promote your product and brand organically.

While Google ads are convenient, they can be costly. Alternatively, with some search engine optimization expertise, you can use your blog posts to attract audiences and acquire customers for free. To achieve great results from owned marketing, you need to deploy the right strategies for each type of media.

Own the communication channels with customers

Besides providing more control over your content, owned marketing also allows you to connect and communicate with your customers more directly. The comments section on your website and your social media channels are perfect examples. If you own the communication channels, you can keep, remove, and respond to comments as you like.

Leverage these communication channels to promote brand loyalty by making the customers feel heard. Take suggestions from customer comments about future product launches and use them to gain insight into your customers’ experience with your current products and services.

Owned marketing vs. earned marketing vs. paid marketing

Owned, earned, and paid marketing all have their respective pros and cons. While earned marketing can provide more value, it offers a lower degree of control. Paid marketing might generate quicker results, but it requires continuous financing and offers limited control. Owned marketing, on the other hand, only requires time and effort on your part while saving you money and providing you a greater degree of control.

What is earned marketing?

Earned marketing is when third parties do your marketing for you. Examples include press coverage, mentions from other brands, or being tagged in social media by your customers.

What is paid marketing?

This can include paid promotion on different channels (Google, Instagram, Facebook, etc.), influencer marketing, and sponsored content.

Top 3 predictions for owned marketing in 2021

The world of marketing is rapidly evolving. Just as there was a massive shift from traditional marketing channels to online marketing as internet adoption increased, soon we’ll see changes to the top online channels and marketing strategies as well. Here are some predictions for owned marketing among brands:

Owned marketing will become a priority

Not all businesses can afford to depend entirely on paid marketing. Utilizing your brand’s channels for marketing reduces marketing spend and offers marketers a greater degree of control.

Thanks to affordable or free data analytics tools, even small businesses can utilize data collected from customers and competitors to formulate a highly targeted and successful marketing strategy to deploy on their brand channels. Owned marketing’s convenience, affordability, and freedom make it a top strategy contender for brands in 2021.

Brands will test out new content channels to improve ROI

A business’s long-term success depends on its profitability. Companies always have (and always will) opt for strategies that deliver the best value for minimum investment. Brands will test out and explore new marketing channels—both paid and owned—to learn what works best for them. 

iOS 14 privacy changes will make brands shift budget from ads to content

The privacy changes in iOS 14 have limited apps’ ability to track users across other apps. For example, Facebook will no longer be able to track your activity in Safari. These new settings mean that brands cannot use your information as easily as they could before. 

Because of these limited permissions and restrictions, companies may not have enough data to create accurate and targeted ads, forcing them to shift their budget from creating ads to creating content. They’ll aim to bring in more customers through a pull marketing strategy.

Conclusion

While paid marketing promises quick results, owned marketing provides long-term marketing channels that you can use in any way you want. Its flexibility and control are making owned marketing an emerging trend that smart companies should consider.

To see how ManyChat helps with owned marketing, click the button below to try us out for free!

With increasing customer acquisition costs and organic reach in decline on social media platforms, brands have to spend more money than ever to acquire customers. Not every business has the war chest needed to outspend the competition, so many companies are now shifting towards owned marketing to grow their customer base and keep them loyal.

What is owned marketing?

Owned marketing is a type of marketing in which brands promote products and services using the channels that are “owned” by the brand. They do this primarily to lower customer acquisition costs and to prevent overreliance on paid advertising.

Owned marketing channels

Owned marketing channels do not require you to pay for promotion and can include platforms like your website, app, email, social media pages, SMS, and forums that you might have created. Below are examples of ways businesses can capitalize on owned marketing.

Content Marketing

Content marketing involves creating content that existing or potential customers would find interesting. The content doesn’t have to be a detailed advertisement of the product; in fact, it’s better if it’s in the form of infographics, photos, statistics, instructional text, or anything that may result in customer awareness or acquisition. Content marketing is predominantly used to promote your product in a roundabout way: it provides information on a topic relevant to your customers and introduces them to your brand.

Use your website or social media channels for content marketing promotion. Pro tip: When using social media channels, ensure you thoroughly research what type of content works the best on each channel.

For example, infographics may prove more fruitful when shared through a particular social media channel, but not others. The same goes for other types of content. To ensure success for your owned media content marketing strategy, you must invest enough time and energy in creating and testing the strategy and stay focused on hitting your goals.

Email marketing

Email marketing offers a greater degree of personalization than content marketing and is an excellent tool for establishing long-term relationships with customers. Through email, you can send invites to potential customers based on their website activity, deliver lead magnets like ebooks and webinars, share subscription information, or promote new products or campaigns.

Though its click-through rates may pale in comparison to other mediums like SMS, email is still a tried-and-true channel with impressive conversion rates. It’s also superior when it comes to sharing longer messages.

SMS marketing

An SAP survey revealed that 76% of consumers say that they are more likely to view a message quickly if it is in the form of an SMS text rather than an email. Furthermore, 64% would prefer companies use SMS for communication more than they already do.

SMS marketing is convenient for users, and as a result, it delivers high conversion and click-through rates. Sending a call to action through SMS makes it super easy for the receiver to respond—they usually just have to tap out a few words on their phone. You can also inform potential customers in your vicinity of a new product or an upcoming event through close-range (proximity) marketing. Like email, SMS marketing software also allows you to segment and target your customers more precisely.

Facebook Messenger

Facebook Messenger uses chatbots to help you connect with existing customers or convert new ones. You can use the chatbots to inform users about your customer support’s availability or schedule chat blasts to promote new products as they’re launched.

When using Facebook Messenger for marketing, you can use the information collected through your Facebook page to create custom audiences that precisely target customers. You can deploy push marketing strategies using Messenger to deliver promotional content or “pull in” your customers by offering them the content they are looking for.

Organic social media

Businesses can use social media accounts for both paid and owned marketing. You have the option to create paid ads and show them to a targeted audience, of course, but that is not the only way to increase your reach. 

With organic marketing, the platform’s promotion service will not amplify your message, but you can still increase your reach by creating relevant content and using the right keywords and hashtags. The easy shareability of social media posts can convert your owned marketing into “earned” marketing—when the content you create is appealing and interesting enough for social media users to share it further through social media mentions. In this situation, the responsibility of marketing promotion is no longer on your shoulders.

Your website

With the right SEO knowledge and quality content that adds value for users, your website can go a long way as a marketing channel. You can use as many media types as you want on your website; a good marketing strategy employs multiple mediums like images, infographics, texts, and videos to create content. Having a variety of content types is important because users have varied content preferences, and mixing up the mediums will allow you to reach a diverse audience.

Referral marketing

Referral marketing is when a company motivates its existing customers to promote its brand or products by word of mouth and recommendation. This type of marketing can be beneficial, as the recommendation source is more credible—it’s not the company that creates the products but the customers who use them. As a result, potential customers are much less likely to question the authenticity of such endorsements. This is one reason why referral marketing leads convert 30% better than other types of leads.

Reviews

Like referral marketing, customer reviews on your website can also be a great marketing strategy. While some business owners resort to using fake reviews on their websites to promote their brand, don’t be tempted to do so yourself. This practice is not only unethical but is also of little use. Today’s customer knows the difference between a fake review and an authentic review when they see it. Moreover, there is software available, like FakeSpot, that can help customers reveal a review’s authenticity. 

As long as the reviews are authentic, they will convince customers that your brand is worthwhile. They can also clue you into what product features are popular among your customers and what they’d like to see you improve.

The benefits of owned marketing

Owned marketing has enough benefits to make it worth including as a part of your digital marketing strategy. Here are some of its main advantages:

Lower conversion costs

When you use your brand’s channels for marketing your product you do not need to pay for running promotional content. This means that if you get users to convert through these channels, the acquisition cost is zero. If you are a small business and do not have the resources to spend a fortune on advertising, you can benefit greatly from leveraging the marketing channels that you own yourself.

However, business owners must put genuine effort into creating marketing content to deploy an owned marketing strategy. An essential part of a successful marketing plan is setting SMART (i.e., specific and measurable) goals, regardless of the type of media you use.

Control your branding and messaging

If you control the brand channels, you can enjoy complete control over what you are promoting, whom you are targeting, when you are promoting, and how long you want the promotion or any other marketing content to stay. Paid channels limit your content’s visibility to a specific time period, whereas your owned channels keep the content online indefinitely.

Reduce reliance on paid promotion

Paid ads are a great way to promote growth, but with growing ad costs, they can take a big chunk out of your bottom line. Marketing through your own channels like your website, blog, or app can reduce your reliance on paid media. You can also use a social media platform or your YouTube channel to promote your product and brand organically.

While Google ads are convenient, they can be costly. Alternatively, with some search engine optimization expertise, you can use your blog posts to attract audiences and acquire customers for free. To achieve great results from owned marketing, you need to deploy the right strategies for each type of media.

Own the communication channels with customers

Besides providing more control over your content, owned marketing also allows you to connect and communicate with your customers more directly. The comments section on your website and your social media channels are perfect examples. If you own the communication channels, you can keep, remove, and respond to comments as you like.

Leverage these communication channels to promote brand loyalty by making the customers feel heard. Take suggestions from customer comments about future product launches and use them to gain insight into your customers’ experience with your current products and services.

Owned marketing vs. earned marketing vs. paid marketing

Owned, earned, and paid marketing all have their respective pros and cons. While earned marketing can provide more value, it offers a lower degree of control. Paid marketing might generate quicker results, but it requires continuous financing and offers limited control. Owned marketing, on the other hand, only requires time and effort on your part while saving you money and providing you a greater degree of control.

What is earned marketing?

Earned marketing is when third parties do your marketing for you. Examples include press coverage, mentions from other brands, or being tagged in social media by your customers.

What is paid marketing?

This can include paid promotion on different channels (Google, Instagram, Facebook, etc.), influencer marketing, and sponsored content.

Top 3 predictions for owned marketing in 2021

The world of marketing is rapidly evolving. Just as there was a massive shift from traditional marketing channels to online marketing as internet adoption increased, soon we’ll see changes to the top online channels and marketing strategies as well. Here are some predictions for owned marketing among brands:

Owned marketing will become a priority

Not all businesses can afford to depend entirely on paid marketing. Utilizing your brand’s channels for marketing reduces marketing spend and offers marketers a greater degree of control.

Thanks to affordable or free data analytics tools, even small businesses can utilize data collected from customers and competitors to formulate a highly targeted and successful marketing strategy to deploy on their brand channels. Owned marketing’s convenience, affordability, and freedom make it a top strategy contender for brands in 2021.

Brands will test out new content channels to improve ROI

A business’s long-term success depends on its profitability. Companies always have (and always will) opt for strategies that deliver the best value for minimum investment. Brands will test out and explore new marketing channels—both paid and owned—to learn what works best for them. 

iOS 14 privacy changes will make brands shift budget from ads to content

The privacy changes in iOS 14 have limited apps’ ability to track users across other apps. For example, Facebook will no longer be able to track your activity in Safari. These new settings mean that brands cannot use your information as easily as they could before. 

Because of these limited permissions and restrictions, companies may not have enough data to create accurate and targeted ads, forcing them to shift their budget from creating ads to creating content. They’ll aim to bring in more customers through a pull marketing strategy.

Conclusion

While paid marketing promises quick results, owned marketing provides long-term marketing channels that you can use in any way you want. Its flexibility and control are making owned marketing an emerging trend that smart companies should consider.

To see how ManyChat helps with owned marketing, click the button below to try us out for free!

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The contents of this blog were independently prepared and are for informational purposes only. The opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of ManyChat or any other party. Individual results may vary.