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Why Earned Media is the Golden Unicorn of Marketing

Event Snapshot written by LY Intern – Andrew Tiganis

In June’s masterclass Phil Sylvester from Media Stable presented to the Legally Yours Community on ‘Why Earned Media is the Golden Unicorn of Marketing’.

Phil is the General Manager of Media Stable in NSW. He has over thirty years’ experience in the media industry and is an internationally recognized travel safety and insurance expert.

Article Summary Points:

What is ‘Earned Media’?

In the masterclass, Phil outlined the four types of media; Paid, Earned, Shared and Owned. Most businesses usually rely on ‘Paid Media’ like taking out an advertisement in a newspaper.

On the other hand, ‘Earned Media’, is where your expertise is so valuable that the media will give you a place in their programming. Experts in any field can position themselves for Earned Media opportunities.

However, Phil admittedly explains that it is the most difficult form of media because you cannot buy it.

It requires you to be a Thought leader in your field who also has a relationship with the media.  ^

Why is it the ‘Golden Unicorn of Marketing’?

Phil says that part of the reason why Earned Media is a ‘unicorn’ is because the way to get there is a little mythical.

It requires building relationships with the media and establishing yourself as an expert and then using your expertise to satisfy the media’s questions.

The media uses the trust and authority of an expert to enhance their own trust and authority to their audience.

By appearing in that media, it makes the expert more appealing to the audience who have chosen that specific broadcaster or newspaper because they trust it.

This in turn makes the expert more appealing to the media in a reciprocal relationship.

Phil emphasises that this does not mean advertising your business.

Instead, he advises to begin by explaining the why.

This means that instead of talking about what your business does, focus on the very reason why your business exists.

This idea is based upon the Content Marketing credo that ‘if you consistently provide compellingly useful information to your audience, they will eventually reward you with their patronage.’

The outcome of Earned Media is clear.

It is cost effective and leads to far higher growth rates than other forms of media.

Phil recounted his own experience as a travel insurance expert where his company earned five million dollars of ‘Earned Media’ year-on-year!  ^

What does Media Stable do?

Phil purposefully did not discuss what Media Stable does during his presentation.

It was only when prompted with a question from the audience that he explained the what of Media Stable.

By beginning with the why he demonstrated the Content Marketing credo that is the basis of effective ‘Earned Media’.

Media Stable is a media engagement strategy which leverages expertise to help clients win ‘Earned Media’.

The media for many professionals can be ‘mythical’ so Media Stable steps in to help professionals become the ‘go to’ expert and build relationships with media organisations.  ^

To find out more about Media Stable visit them at

This Event Snapshot post does not constitute legal advice or a legal opinion on any matter discussed and, accordingly, it should not be relied upon. It should not be regarded as a comprehensive statement of the law and practice in this area.

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