Paid Marketing and Media, what is that exactly?

Online marketing EcosystemIn a previous post I presented the Basic Principles of Online Marketing. What you need to know from that post is that there are three types of marketing, communications and advertising.

My previous posts were on owned marketing and earned media, this one will focus on paid marketing and media.

What’s paid marketing or paid media?

Paid marketing refers to all kinds of paid advertising that appears on the Internet and other interactive platforms. Paid marketing vs ownedThis includes display advertising (banners) on the Internet (content, service and social media sites), on video game consoles, mobile devices (sites and applications) and digital displays; video advertising; email advertising (advertisement integrated into a publisher’s newsletter); directories and classified ads; and marketing on search engines (purchase of text advertisements by words/key phrases).

Some of these tools are more “glamorous” than others. Some have instant results, whereas others offer more long-term advantages. Each tool has its place in the consumer purchase cycle (reach, awareness, appreciation, consideration, intent to buy, acquisition/purchase and relationship optimization/management).


For example, online video attracts user’s attention much better than many other ad formats (like TV does better than other offline media). Consequently, it performs better where marketing metrics are concerned: spontaneous awareness, aided awareness, brand appreciation, ad appreciation, brand attributes… Why? Like for television ads, watching a real person talk to us is more compelling than reading a text or viewing a graphic. Also, never forget we are lazy to a certain degree so being entertained for 15-30 seconds is easier than having to read. But in the end, this format performs well where awareness, appreciation, consideration and intent to buy is concerned. It isn’t good for reach or for acquisition.

Search Engines

On the other end of the spectrum, search engines are used to buy key words and key phrases to broadcast text ads to generate clicks and eventually sales. This type of ad does not reach a mass of people, nor does it work on building awareness and appreciation. It is great at consideration, intent to buy and conversion / acquisition. So search engines work far down the funnel, near the point of purchase – that’s when people have decided to buy something and are either shopping around for something like it, or for who’s got the better deal for this. Is this an opportunistic ad placement? Hell yeah! That’s also why you should be doing it: call it easy pickings or low lying fruit. However this tool / tactic is not the be-all and end-all of advertising. It is still very much relevant and important that you reach people to build awareness and appreciation / trust for your brand.

Across all these opportunities (display advertising, video advertising, email advertising, directories, classifieds and SEM), it’s further important to keep in mind that numerous ad formats are available, different types of platforms can be used (like mobile, content sites, service sites, video games…) and many types of basic and advanced targeting options are at your disposal to execute a better campaign.