Examples of Controlled Media

10 Examples of Controlled Media: Take Charge of Your Brand’s Story

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MAT Releases, native advertisements, CPL campaigns — it’s hard to remember what exactly these different controlled media formats are (especially after coming back after the holidays). In my previous post, I touched on what controlled media is in a general sense and what the two main types are: owned and paid. A lot of these tactics are evolving all the time and the lines between them are getting more and more blurred.

To help refresh your memory, let’s go through 10 examples of effective controlled media tactics:

Owned Content

1. Spotify: Landing Pages

The landing pages that live on your brand’s website serve a unique purpose and can be tailored to prompt certain actions from the visitor. Whether it’s your website homepage or an event-specific landing page, you can tell your brand’s story through your website content, design and features.

There are so many great landing pages out there (seriously, go look at some of your favorite websites!), but Spotify’s homepage really captures the idea of segmenting and redirecting their audience from the very first touchpoint. Spotify uses three separate calls to action for potential trial-users, current customers and visitors that are not interested in paying for music streaming with colorful designs and easy navigation on top of that.

Spotify CTA

Spotify CTA example

Spotify CTA example

[READ MORE: Is Your Lead Gen a Liability?]

2. Salesforce: Blog Posts

Blog content is the backbone of content marketing and is a great source of both owned and paid media depending on how it’s distributed. Blog posts can oftentimes serve many purposes at once by attracting new visitors through organic search and adding value to your current customers by providing new thought leadership or answering common questions. Salesforce’s blog does exactly that by posting general thought leadership articles that appeal to many different types of visitors as well as content specific to their product offerings for current or new customers.

3. Etsy: Podcast Episodes

Podcasts are an alternative to blog posts that can be very effective when storytelling plays an important role in your brand’s customer experience. Podcasts can bring a fun and entertaining twist to normal content creation and give your brand a personality as well. Etsy produces the ‘Etsy Success Podcast’ series featuring different Etsy shops and relevant trends that are likely entertaining for aspiring artists and their current shop owners.

4. Slack: Videos

Videos can be used across so many of your brand’s platforms and are nothing new to the marketing world. Whether you use videos to spruce up your website, as part of your sales process, or to promote on social media, there is a type of video to meet every need. Slack has a YouTube channel filled with different how-to videos to guide their users through tutorials that are easy to follow and understand.

[Read More: 13 Ideas for Social Media Videos]

5. Brandpoint: Graphic Assets

To round out the owned media examples, graphic assets, such as infographics and listicles, are a great way to share information in bite-sized amounts. These assets can be integrated into your owned and paid media and repurposed for many different uses. For example, we incorporated an infographic about the financial services industry in this 2019 blog post to visually show the key statistics and takeaways from the article at a glance.

Marketing for Financial Services Infographic

Paid Content

6. Purina: MAT Release

A standard MAT Release is formatted like a normal news article with an image or two and provides valuable information to the reader. Odds are you’ve been exposed to MAT Releases many times in your everyday life without even realizing it was a sponsored post. This is because MAT Releases don’t have a “salesy” feel and are useful to the audience regardless of whether they become a customer of the brand that’s featured. For example, this MAT Release that we created for Purina mentions general pet-owner tips and only mentions Purina when relevant instead of leading with the brand name.

[Read More: What is a MAT Release?]

7. Biohaven: Premium MAT Release

A Premium MAT Release is a MAT Release with other forms of your owned content added in to create a visually appealing article that also gives more exposure to your brand than just a link. In this example from Biohaven Pharmaceuticals, an image, quote, infographic and video are all included in the MAT Release itself to engage the audience even further.

8. Indeed: Expert Series

Featuring specific thought leaders or subject matter experts in your paid media is another great way to elevate the typical MAT Release. Experts bring a whole new level of credibility to your content and may gain additional organic traffic if you feature it in your owned content as well. Indeed has a podcast called ‘Lead with Indeed’ that features leaders in talent acquisition. This is a great example of how an expert series can be used as a form of owned content, and could also be repurposed into a MAT Release to reach a larger audience.

[Read More: Expand the Reach of Thought Leadership with the Expert Series]

9. Facebook: Native Advertising

Using native advertising is another way to generate traffic from publishers’ websites without including an entire article on the subject. A native advertisement usually features some sort of visual asset that can either showcase your brand or remain subtle depending on your strategy. You can see examples of this everywhere, and once you start to notice it, you can’t stop. Here is an example of a native advertisement placement from Facebook at the top of the NY Times website.

Facebook Native Ad

10. Cost-Per-Lead Campaigns

The big-ticket items on your website, such as E-books or whitepapers, can be distributed to a larger and more targeted audience through cost-per-lead (CPL) campaigns. Through third-party syndication platforms, you can select the resource, image and copy you want to be promoted (similar to a paid advertisement), and then voila — the leads start pouring in!

[Read More: What are CPL Campaigns?]

This is only the tip of the iceberg with controlled media — there are examples all around us and they’re always changing. If you’re interested in learning even more, take a moment to explore Brandpoint’s content distribution page to see all of our distribution options and how they can fit into your marketing strategy.

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