Digital Marketing: Why You Should Seek Out Interview Opportunities

The digital marketing landscape seems like it’s moving faster than ever. Practices that were in vogue just last year now feel hopelessly outdated, pitched to the curb by changes in Google’s magic algorithm or social media platform policies.

Is it even worth trying to keep up?

In a word, yes. But you shouldn’t only chase the latest, greatest Google tactics or invest every last marketing dollar in influencer marketing. Some old tactics for gaining visibility online (and offline) still work just fine.

Take earned media. Earned media has been a “thing” since before Google was a gleam in Larry Page’s eye. By marketers’ standards, earned media is positively ancient. It predates the rise of the modern marketing industry itself.

And, to be perfectly clear, successful earned media campaigns do exactly what they’re intended to do: increase exposure and enhance reputations.

There are many ways to seek out earned media, each with its own pros and cons. Here, we focus on the benefits of one in particular: seeking out interviews with online media outlets. 

1. Earned Media Is More Authentic Than “SponCon”

Media consumers are more sophisticated than we want to believe. They know when something doesn’t read right — like when you pay for a positive story about you or your brand. This is “SponCon,” or sponsored content, and you have to be careful about how you use it. Earned media, by contrast, has that authenticity factor that SponCon just can’t match.

2. You Can Tell Your Story on Your Own Terms 

Earned media requires you to give up some control over how a story is written and presented. But if you choose the right outlet, you can be pretty sure that you’ll like the end result. This

Ideamensch profile for Mike Signorelli, founding pastor of a rapidly growing church in the New York City area, is a good example. So are most other Ideamensch profiles, being that they’re found on a website that gives interview subjects room to tell their side of the story.

3. Earned Media Costs Nothing Except Your Time

Generating earned media does take time — every story involves multiple emails and probably at least one call, then maybe some more back and forth. On the other hand, unless you hire a PR professional, you won’t need to pay for your earned media mentions.

4. Earn Media Increases Your Credibility

Earned media’s authenticity and apparent spontaneity are good for your credibility. After all, you “earned” that mention. People who encounter it will recognize that achievement for what it is.

5. It’s Good for SEO

Earned media mentions that appear on high-authority websites are good for your own SEO. Increasing your website’s domain authority or ranking higher for certain search terms should not be the primary reason you seek out earned media, but it can’t hurt, right?

6. It’s More Accessible Than “Owned” Media

It’s great to have sources of “owned” media for your readers to consume. These are web properties that you control and whose coverage you can predict or direct. But independent sources of owned media (as opposed to “public” owned media, like LinkedIn) are expensive to develop and not everyone has access to those kinds of resources.

7. Its Benefits Can Last for Years

Many earned media stories are not timely. They remain relevant for years to come, conferring credibility and SEO value on your brand all the while. Think of earned media as a long-term investment, not a quick boost.

8. It’s Fun

Seeking out interviews and helping writers or media producers build stories around you or your brand are fun! It’s okay to enjoy the process, especially when the benefits are so clear cut.

Get Yourself Out There

Putting yourself out there can be a little intimidating at first. Even if you’re a “people person” who enjoys shooting the breeze with others and doesn’t mind talking about themselves, intentionally reaching out to interviewers and other media types is a scary prospect. After all, interviews don’t always go as the interviewee envisions.

It’s natural to feel some hesitancy about your earned media strategy. Unfortunately, that strategy won’t be as successful as it could be if you don’t go all in on it. It might not show any benefit at all. You wouldn’t want to give up the considerable benefits discussed here, would you?

Of course not. So, buck up. You’ve got this, earned media pro. It’s time to show the world what you’ve got.

Adam Hansen

Adam is a part time journalist, entrepreneur, investor and father.