Updated: Apr 21, 2022
Hey there, Story Sister! In today’s episode, I’m going to share with you a story about discovering new doors and new ways of reaching your audience.
My daughter recently started back to school for her second year at university. On her first day of class she told me she tracked down her classroom and showed up nice and early. Soon, other students began to arrive in the hallway outside the assigned classroom. But there was no teacher in sight. Someone tried the door. And it was locked. So the students kept waiting out in the hallway.
Eventually it was time for class to start, but the door was still locked and there was still no teacher. And then – one of the students took a short walk to the end of the hallway and turned the corner – and – can you guess what they found? That’s right - there was a second door to the classroom. And half of the students had entered there, but the other half were waiting with my daughter at the locked door in the second hallway.
The story ended well, with all the students eventually finding their way into the right space.
But when my daughter told me this story, it made me think.
After all, how many of us are standing at locked doors waiting for someone to show up with a key and let us in.
So here's my challenge to you today: always look for the SECOND door.
My experience has taught me that if one door is locked – there’s always another way in.
And today, I’m going to talk to you about that second door which you may have overlooked when it comes to marketing and promoting your program, your product or service.
The first door you may already be using is called Owned Media. Owned Media is what we call those channels or platforms where we essentially control the content. Examples would be our web site, our blog, our email list, our YouTube channel or podcast maybe an e-book and even our social media properties like Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. When it comes to Owned Media, we can pretty much control most of what happens in those spaces I mentioned.
On the other hand, Owned Media really relies on people already know about us and where we share our content. But it’s only one way into the room. It’s only the first door.
So today I want to encourage you to go down the hallway and peer around the corner.
Because waiting for you there is the Second Door.
And that door is called Earned Media. Earned media refers to stories that are generated about you or your business that don’t come directly from you. You’ve earned the right to be talked about by doing the amazing things you’re doing. And that’s where media relations and third-party endorsement and testimonials come in. Earned media includes all of those things. It also includes important social proof like product or business reviews as well as invitations to be a guest on other people’s stages or podcasts or blogs or YouTube channels.
So why is Earned Media such an important doorway for you to be aware of? The impact of Earned Media can actually be more valuable than what you say about yourself on your Owned Media.
We tend to believe more in a business when OTHER people are saying great things about it, am I right? Because it packs a powerful punch when someone ELSE highlights the amazing work you’re doing. PLUS while your Owned Media allow you to build relationships with your EXISTING audience, Earned Media introduces you to NEW audiences. And new audiences = growth.
P.S. The third door I mention in this episode is PAID Media. And it’s helpful too, but mostly for Story Pros. Remember, when you're looking to grow your audience and expand your reach, you can't rely on only one door.