Just got out of the morning session of AdAge Digital Conference where Union Square Ventures’ Fred Wilson discussed the idea that it’s time we start investing in “earned media” in addition to the good ole fashioned paid variety. Then he shared this point of comparison:
Two ad spots during the Superbowl cost roughly $4MM plus another $1MM to produce the ad. That means an advertiser is spending $5M to get roughly 10MM people exposed (but not engaged), for 30 to 60 seconds.
CareerBuilder’s Monk-e-Mail campaign cost $250k in creative and execution fees (earned media, not paid) and got 30MM users to actually interact—for an average of 8 minutes each.
Whip out your calculator and you’ll quickly see that the pure cost per impression for the paid media campaign is $.50—versus $.000833 for the earned media campaign. And that’s not even factoring in the length of time they spent on the site or the viral/network effect downstream.
Is it me or is the shift to earned media A TOTAL NO BRAINER?
The only thing I don’t understand is why a smart guy like Fred would pussyfoot around the issue and say “in addition to” not “instead of”.
Throw down the gauntlet, Fred! Stir the pot! PUH-LEASE!!!!!!!!!!!!
(Also, thank you for giving me a lovely excuse to drop an f-bomb. And for sharing that story about the Jonas Brothers. Much obliged.)