Jun 20, 2016 / by Katie Gaab

With a multitude of channels to publish and spread your messages on, why is it so hard to reach and impact your audience?

Well, the majority (92 percent) of consumers trust their peers over branded content for recommendations. In fact, word-of-mouth has been found to be 62 times more effective than traditional advertising.

The message is clear: if you want your campaigns to have an impact, you need to connect with influencers. But in order to do this, and do it well, influencer relations must be merged with an integrated communication strategy. How?

Rely on a combination of these four media types to drive awareness, build trust, expand reach and win over new audiences:

Paid Media


Paid media refers to any time you spend money to reach your audience with your messages. To reach your target influencers, use your media database to find their preferred platforms, then reach out with sponsored posts and ads.

Now you know where to approach influencers, but do you know how? Follow the “Social Media Side Door” approach. Ian Greenleigh advises your ads showcase your brand’s expertise, promote its content and include a call-to-action to further engage your brand.

Content syndication can drive additional brand exposure and traffic. Promote content on sites influencers are already visiting to increase the chances of grabbing their attention and raising awareness about your brand.

Earned Media

Earned media is typically referred to as publicity or media coverage. In other words, any time you receive a mention by a media outlet, journalist, influencer or blogger.

Keep in mind, the number of followers an influencer has does not necessarily determine whether or not they’ll provide value to your brand. Instead of being concerned with overall reach, consider target influencers whose loyal, engaged audience address your most valuable niches.

When an influencer begins speaking about your brand, leverage those mentions to earn more publicity by sharing these posts and even using paid media to promote them. This will keep the conversation going online and via social media to further additional waves of publicity from other influencers and their audiences.

Want examples of brands using the PESO model to influence their audience? Get our free tip sheet!

Shared Media


Shared media often refers to social media and includes retweets, shares, likes and more. To stay on your influencers’ minds, comment on their social posts, share their content and congratulate them on their success.

When an influencer has signed on with your brand, provide them with tracked links and any appropriate hashtags to track their impact through your social listening tools to see how their audience is engaging with, and ideally sharing, the post.

Keep the social engagement going with those followers to nurture them from tertiary contacts to future brand advocates.

Owned Media

Quite simply, this is content created in-house about your brand for your brand. To increase the potential for amplification and getting some earned and shared media out of it, consider writing about topics your influencers (and the new audiences you want to reach) are interested in. Your media database holds the key to the topics that interest them and could spur future partnerships or distribution.

Get influencers involved by asking them to contribute to your blog or host a webinar. If they agree, offer them opportunities like an opt-in box for their email newsletters. Just like your brand hopes to increase its reach, influencers look for ways to advance theirs too.

Finally, don’t forget to promote your owned content across social media, through press releases or by pitching reporters. Creating content is only one part of the PESO puzzle piece, but when all four areas work together, that’s where you’ll find success.


Images via Pixabay: 1, 2, 3

Most Recent Posts

Cision Blogs Topics

  • Communications Best Practices

    Get the latest updates on PR, communications and marketing best practices.

  • Cision Product News

    Keep up with everything Cision. Check here for the most current product news.

  • Executive Insights

    Thought leadership and communications strategy for the C-suite written by the C-suite.

  • Media Blog

    A blog for and about the media featuring trends, tips, tools, media moves and more.

About Katie Gaab

Katie Gaab is a content marketing specialist for Cision. Previously the senior editor for Help A Reporter Out (HARO), she enjoys connecting audiences to exciting, new content. She's a dancer, avid concert-goer, foreign language nerd and book worm. Find her on Twitter @kathryngaab.