Earned media, it is everything that people tell about your brand. All the buzz that spreads itself by people who are not working in your company.

Influencer marketing is all about earned media because the influencer is promoting your product. Through the account of the influencer, your product reaches different accounts, accounts that you cannot reach with your posts on social media.

It’s a very complex item to manage and calculate. Through earned media value (EMV) people try to link value to the earned media based on algorithms referred to the likes, views, and engagement. (shares, click on a link, comments)

In essence, they try to find a simple answer to an extremely complicated question.

EMV is a purely quantitative method

For starters, EMV is a quantitative method. So, it doesn’t take into account things like engagement, other competitor mentions, or how you formulate your key messages. For example, the EMV should not be the same when an influencer is posting something positive about your brand and have a lot of engagement or when an influencer is posting something negative. This nuance is deleted because the unique value of a qualitative method is missing.

There is so much quantitative data you get from influencer marketing that makes it entirely possible to evaluate the campaign by the numbers you get. You don’t need to go searching for extra values through EMV.

There are a million different ways to calculate EMV

A second element of why EMV is outdated is because there are so many different types and formulas to calculate the EMV, all based on different company goals. Therefore, it’s tough to compare or understand items when they are calculated in different ways. There isn’t a reliable system to base all kinds of numbers or statements on. There is no defined standard measurement.

Different goals lead to different methods

Every company sets its own goals within different campaigns, so should KPI’s or measurements do. Influencer marketing is connected to other marketing actions. It’s crucial to set the right goals and think about a good strategy.  

EMV throws the target group overboard

Another drawback is that EMV doesn’t care about your target audience. Everybody is treated equally, so there are no nuances. The influencer may reach a wrong target group, but the EMV doesn’t take that into account.

The amount of followers does not say everything

The last argument is that the number of followers doesn’t always say that much. Don’t assume that mega or macro-influencers with a lot of followers automatically mean more engagement. Sometimes smaller micro-influencers are more specialized in a specific theme and are therefore more effective. The influencer media value of a mega influencer will be higher than with a micro-influencer, but do not take your conclusion right away. The amount of followers is not always the correct criterion.

Measure using real-time data

So, let’s be honest media value is a very complex system that doesn’t make sense anymore in the world of influencer marketing. Measuring media value differs for each brand, depending on the initial goals the company sets, the content type, or the communication channel.

EMV was created for traditional media ads like tv, print, and radio. We must recognize that media value is an assumption; it is not something fixed or absolute. The same counts with influencer marketing, an algorithm determines the outcome, and you can’t control the algorithm. We can use real-time data to evaluate the projects, but in this calculation, EMV is an outdated measurement of success to be used in influencer marketing.