What is a Media Company & Why Your Brand Should Be One

Key Insights 📈 🌐

  • Brands need to think, Act, and Operate like a Media Company. The only way to be successful in today’s disjointed digital ecosystem is to create content and tell stories that matter to your target consumer and do so quickly, efficiently, and precisely.
  • Content as a Strategic Imperative: Content is now a lifeline, not a sporadic marketing tactic. Brands must tell stories that truly matter to customers and execute them precisely. Quality and speed are equally vital to keep audiences engaged.
  • A Systematic Approach to Transformation: Becoming a media company demands internal and external initiatives spanning team structures, content strategies, creative newsrooms, and unified distribution. Every aspect requires meticulous planning and seamless activation.
  • The Need for a Clear Roadmap: Brands must define narratives, build capabilities, and continually evolve content to uphold relevance. Clarity and purpose drive systematic progress.
  • Success Stories Demonstrate Impact: Brands like Red Bull and Glossier reveal the power of evolving into media companies. Loyal communities and industry redefinition follow brands that lead with content and engagement.
  • Overcoming Transformation Challenges: Speed, operations, resources, and audience understanding are all challenges brands face. Streamlined processes, talent, and tools are mandatory to meet the breakneck internet pace.
  • Managing the Full Content Lifecycle: Planning, producing, optimizing, syndicating, and measuring content is crucial. Brands must manage content holistically across the lifecycle to drive resonance and performance.

Content is the lifeline in today’s social ecosystem, so it makes sense. But content is much more than being creative or launching a marketing campaign. It’s more than what you write on a blog, tweet, update on Facebook, or record on a video. A fundamental challenge for brands today is to create good content and strategically feed the content engine daily. And sadly, there aren’t enough resources within most marketing teams to do this well.

Brand as a media company has been discussed among the marketing community for years. I even wrote a book about it in 2013 called Your Brand: The Next Media Company.

What is a Media Company?

A media company is a multifaceted entity that specializes in the ideation, creation, packaging, and distribution of content across a diverse range of platforms, encompassing social media, video, web, long-form, and short-form content, as well as audio. These companies are not merely content creators; they are storytellers, designers, copywriters, and analysts, possessing a profound understanding of the intricacies involved in ensuring content not only travels but also resonates with the audience on the vast expanse of the internet.

Much like a traditional newsroom, a media company operates urgently and precisely, producing relevant content that aligns with the audience’s interests. Their teams are agile, mirroring the fast-paced nature of the digital world, ensuring that content is not just timely but also of the highest quality. This agility is not just limited to the speed of content production; it also extends to the adaptability of content across various platforms, ensuring a seamless transition from one medium to another.

In essence, a media company is a modern-day newsroom equipped with the tools and expertise necessary to navigate the digital landscape. Their role is not just to inform or entertain but to engage the audience in a conversation, fostering a sense of community and connection. Through their content, they not only reflect the zeitgeist of the times but also shape it, playing a pivotal role in the way information is consumed and shared in today’s interconnected world.

Below is a model showing the internal and external initiatives needed to transform into a media company.

What is a media Company? A media company creates content in real-time targeted towards relevant audiences.

Legacy media companies face immense pressure to adapt their organizational structures and team workflows to succeed in the fast-moving digital landscape. Rather than siloed departments divided by function, modern media firms must embrace agile, cross-functional teams that can ideate, produce, and distribute content seamlessly.

Reimagining Media Company Operations

Legacy media companies face immense pressure to adapt their organizational structures and team workflows to succeed in the fast-moving digital landscape. Rather than siloed departments divided by function, modern media firms must embrace agile, cross-functional teams that can ideate, produce, and distribute content seamlessly.

Building Agile, Integrated Teams

An agile, cross-disciplinary team is at the core of any successful modern media company. Leadership must clearly define roles across content, product, technology, data, and design. Collaboration is key—team members should have the autonomy and tools to work fluidly across specialties. Fostering a DevOps culture allows ideas to progress rapidly from conception to execution.

Media firms are also integrating external agency talent and leveraging content creation platforms to augment in-house skills. Partners like Contently provide on-demand access to writers, optimization experts, and data analysts. Building these blended teams is crucial for matching talent to dynamic needs.

Optimizing Internal Workflows

Transitioning from rigid publishing cycles to real-time operations requires overhauling internal workflows. Modern teams must respond nimbly to audience data, test new formats frequently, and collaborate across specialties.

Workstreams may be divided into four high-level buckets—ideation, production, distribution, and optimization. However, the lines separating these four phases are permeable. Insights gained in distribution and optimization inform upstream ideation and production choices in real-time. Content should flow through an agile workflow optimized for speed and flexibility.

By breaking down silos and embracing agile collaboration, media companies can unlock their full potential in the digital age. The future demands integrated teams, adaptable operations, and a relentless focus on audience needs.

Crafting Unique Brand Narratives

In an increasingly crowded media landscape, developing a distinctive brand narrative is essential for resonating with target audiences and driving business growth. Legacy broadcast strategies must make way for nuanced narratives that evolve with consumers across platforms.

Conduct In-Depth Audience Research

The foundation for an impactful brand narrative is comprehensive audience insights. Media companies should invest in primary research through surveys, interviews, and focus groups. Third-party partners can probe psychographics and behaviors. Internal discovery sessions ensure positional alignment.

Rich insights into audience values, interests, pain points, and aspirations inform narrative development. Personas bring target segments to life and reveal content opportunities. Quantitative data provides supporting evidence. Ongoing research future-proofs the narrative.

Analyze the Competitive Landscape

Media firms must analyze competitors, outlets, and active influencers alongside audience studies. Mapping brand perceptions and attributes identifies strategic white space. Where are consumers underserved? What niche is currently unfilled?

Assessing the content landscape also reveals partnerships that could extend reach. Co-creating with influencers allows brands to connect authentically with their followers.

Craft Dynamic Narratives

With research insights gathered, media companies can develop narratives that resonate. Narratives should have a strong point of view and clear audience-centric goals. Messaging and tone must embody brand values.

Yet narratives cannot remain static. As campaigns unfold, performance data and audience feedback inform updates. Brands must continuously listen and evolve their narratives across paid, owned, and earned channels.

Distilling research into a compelling narrative framework is fundamental to media success today. By speaking uniquely to target audiences, brands build deep engagement and loyalty.

Reimagining the Brand Newsroom

Legacy newsrooms evolved to support scheduled print cycles and broadcast slots. Today’s always-on digital landscape demands a fundamental rethinking of brand newsrooms to thrive. Media companies must pursue two parallel workstreams—developing a robust content hub and optimizing operations for real-time storytelling.

Build a Dynamic Content Hub

At the center of every modern media brand should be an owned content hub—the destination to house and amplify content across formats. To bring this hub to life requires a fusion of software development and creative design.

The technical build must enable seamless content uploading, structured catalogs and taxonomies, and automation for conversion and distribution. Meanwhile, creative design ensures an immersive, on-brand experience aligned with marketing objectives.

With a nimble content hub, media companies can centralize assets and amplify owned media stories.

Optimize for Always-On Publishing

Equally important is transforming legacy newsroom workflows to support real-time, data-driven marketing. Using the content hub as a foundation, the focus shifts to operational agility.

Obsessive audience listening identifies trending topics and whitespace opportunities in real-time. Cross-functional teams swiftly ideate relevant stories and creative treatments to meet demand. With the right workflows, content can flow dynamically from insights to execution within hours.

Performance analytics on published stories further optimize content operations and strategies. Success begets more success.

Modern media brands can break out of rigid news cycles by unifying around a centralized hub and optimizing processes. The future of storytelling must be always on.

Unifying Paid, Earned, Shared, and Owned Media

In today’s splintered media landscape, brands must strategically converge paid, earned, shared, and owned (PESO) channels to maximize impact. Media companies should pursue an integrated framework that amplifies content across platforms.

Paid MediaMedia for which you pay to place your content or ad.Google Ads, Facebook Ads, Sponsored PostsControlled message, wide reachCan be expensive, less trusted by users
Earned MediaMedia exposure gained through word-of-mouth or PR.Customer reviews, media coverageHigh credibility, cost-effectiveLess control over message
Shared MediaMedia shared by users or audience on social platforms.Social media shares, retweetsHigh engagement, viral potentialLess control, depends on user activity
Owned MediaMedia owned and controlled by the brand.Website, blog, email newsletterFull control, cost-effectiveTime-consuming, limited reach

Align Campaigns with Brand Content

Paid media campaigns present a major activation opportunity for owned media content. Creative ideation should consider how stories, videos, and other assets can integrate within paid initiatives across platforms.

Owned content gives campaigns meaning and resonance with core brand values. Meanwhile, campaigns provide distribution vehicles for branded stories. Planning in silos misses this convergence opportunity.

Sponsorships & Partnerships

Partnerships with events, creators, and media outlets generate sponsorship opportunities. Here again, owned content can provide the foundation.

For example, sponsoring a podcast could involve audio content from existing brand stories. Finding natural integrations elevates sponsorships beyond pure promotion.

Optimization for Emerging Platforms

Owned stories and videos can also be optimized and repurposed for platforms like TikTok and Instagram Shopping. Short-form adaptations and new interactive formats make content relevant across rising channels.

Through continuous testing and optimization, media brands can extend the reach of owned assets. The key is retaining creative spirit while reinventing presentation and engagement.

An integrated PESO strategy allows media companies to break through the noise. Owned content should permeate across initiatives to deliver unified brand impact.

A Roadmap to Becoming a Media Company

Embarking on the journey to transform your brand into a media company can seem daunting, but the process becomes more manageable with a clear roadmap. The following table provides a step-by-step guide to help you navigate this transformation.

Each step outlines a crucial part of the process, from defining your brand’s narrative to continually evolving to stay relevant in the ever-changing digital landscape. Let’s dive in and explore these steps in detail.

1. Define Your Brand’s NarrativeCreate a clear and compelling story about your brand, its values, and its mission that resonates with your target audience and differentiates you from your competitors.
2. Understand Your AudienceConduct market research to identify your target audience’s needs, preferences, and behaviors. This will help you create content that resonates with them and meets their needs.
3. Build Your Content StrategyOutline the types of content you will create, the platforms you will use to distribute it, and how often you will publish new content. This strategy should align with your brand narrative and audience research.
4. Assemble Your TeamBuild a diverse team of professionals, including content creators, editors, designers, and analysts. You may also need to partner with external agencies or platforms to support your content creation and distribution efforts.
5. Create Your ContentStart creating content based on your content strategy. Focus on quality over quantity. Your content should provide value to your audience and reinforce your brand narrative.
6. Distribute Your ContentDistribute your content across the platforms identified in your content strategy. This could include your website, social media platforms, email newsletters, and more.
7. Monitor and AdjustUse analytics tools to monitor the performance of your content and adjust your strategy as needed. Track engagement, reach, and other key metrics to refine your content strategy and make improvements.
8. Engage with Your AudienceRespond to comments, ask for feedback, and encourage discussion to build a community around your brand and foster stronger relationships with your audience.
9. Continually EvolveKeep up with industry trends, experiment with new types of content, and continually refine your strategy to stay relevant in the changing digital landscape.

External Factors Causing Disruption

If I haven’t convinced you, here are a few more reasons why you should be thinking about adopting the principles of a media company:

We live in a multi-screen economy

The digital media landscape continues to fracture across devices. Consumers today effortlessly switch between smartphones, tablets, computers, and televisions when consuming content. Modern media companies must build strategies and workflows optimized for seamless multi-screen experiences to engage audiences effectively.

Recent research by Google in partnership with Ipsos and Sterling Brands underscores the prevalence of multi-screen behavior. The study found that Americans spend 4.4 hours daily consuming media across devices. Surprisingly, this fragmented usage is highly collaborative, with different devices playing complementary roles.

Smartphones often initiate tasks and queries, which users continue on larger screens. While mobile sessions are relatively short, phones provide the spark for deeper digital engagement. This insight highlights the need to connect experiences across devices strategically.

Media companies must pursue multi-pronged approaches to content. Creative workflows should consider modular designs adaptable across screens. Integrated tagging and analytics provide insights to optimize engagements. Technology stacks must enable omnichannel personalization and distribution.

For digital advertisers, multi-screen strategies also open up intriguing opportunities. With deep integration, users could easily transition activities initiated on one device onto another—a key seamless experience.

Rather than forcing single-screen limitations, media brands should embrace multi-device synergies. Crafting user journeys without digital seams is the future.

Restoring Focus in the Age of Constant Distraction

Attention spans are eroding in the digital era. While clinical attention deficit disorder is common, on a broader scale, constant connectivity has induced epidemic-level fractured focus. Distracted device usage increasingly consumes everyday life.

Symptoms of diminishing attention abound in modern society. Consider groups sitting together, lost in their screens, impervious to real face-to-face connections. Walk down any street in America today, and you’ll invariably see heads down and people immersed in phones.

Myriad factors drive the worsening distraction epidemic, from the ping of perpetual notifications to the dopamine hooks of social apps. Yet the root cause is modern technology’s infinite feeding of our primal craving for fresh stimuli. Why focus on one task when another is a swipe away?

Restoring healthy attention in the Digital Age requires individual and collective commitment. At a personal level, practices like mindfulness meditation build focus muscles. Broader societal and workplace changes can establish device-free zones. Media companies also share responsibility for designing experiences that engage, not exploit.

With concerted effort, the destratification of daily life is reversible. Our minds remain capable of sustained, meaningful attention. But preserving this capacity means using technology deliberately, not being used by it. The future depends on relearning how to focus.

The Quest for Relevance: Satisfying Modern Media Consumers

Relevance reigns supreme in capturing modern audiences’ limited attention. In an era of endless content overload, consumers increasingly demand experiences personalized to their specific interests and current context. Media companies must prioritize relevance across all brand interactions to break through.

The need for relevance materializes in the content filters people construct to prune out immaterial noise. Social feeds feature only preferred voices. Ad blockers vanish irrelevant ads. Such filtering allows consumers to hone in on what matters now.

The refinancing example illustrates this thirst for relevance. When actively seeking a mortgage, localized financial ads feel timely and useful. But post-refinance, those same promotions become meaningless clutter amid one’s feed. Relevance has an expiration date.

Satisfying the quest for relevance requires deep audience intimacy by media brands. Data insights into interests, habits, and changing needs allow for one-to-one personalization. Mapping the buyer’s journey also reveals opportunities to inject relevance during pivotal moments.

But beyond personalization, media must also pursue relevance through contextualization. Understanding people’s mindsets at the moment makes communications feel significantly more meaningful. Location, time, and real-world events all provide contextual clues.

The quest for relevance reflects a universal human need – to feel seen and understood. Media companies that satisfy this need will earn attention and loyalty.

Mapping the Customer Journey

The fragmented digital landscape has shattered linear consumer journeys. Audiences today traverse winding, nonlinear paths that defy outdated funnel models. To engage customers, brands must embrace journey mapping that captures messy real-world complexity.

The always-connected nature of life ensures most journeys are far from predictable point A to point B progressions. People switch between devices and contexts throughout the day, dictated by internal and external triggers.

Consider a typical morning routine. You may begin by checking overnight texts and social notifications on your phone. A Twitter post leads you to a news article, sparking an internet rabbit hole. Location prompts a local business search on Google. Emails get scanned on a laptop between checking TikTok.

These dizzying journeys cannot be contained in simple funnels. They wind and loop based on infinite signals from our environments and networks. Traditional metrics like reach and frequency give way to engagement.

To navigate this landscape, media companies must undertake dynamic journey mapping that tracks known consumer behaviors while leaving room for surprise and serendipity. The goal is understanding audiences well enough to add value throughout ever-changing journeys.

Satisfying modern consumers means letting go of linear assumptions. Joining their winding journey is the road to relevance.

The Power of Reinforcement: Maximizing Message Impact

Brands seeking to resonate in the digital din understand that relevance is insufficient. In today’s distracting media landscape, even compelling messaging requires repetition to land with audiences truly. Media companies must take a reinforcement-first approach to drive meaning and action.

Psychology and neuroscience reveal that people must interact with messages multiple times before believing or internalizing them. First impressions fade fast. Effective persuasion generally requires 3-5 exposures from a mix of sources.

Consider a new product launch. A single press release or social post will likely fail to register amidst the noise. But layered messaging across owned, earned, and paid channels reinforces interest. Each additional touchpoint – an influencer post, media coverage, or search ad – compounds awareness and builds momentum.

Of course, repetition must be artfully executed to avoid fatigue. Creative variations keep messaging fresh across channels and formats. Data insights identify frequencies needed for different segments. Content platforms scale reinforcement through automation.

In an infinitely distracting world, even remarkable ideas need repetition. Savvy media companies recognize brand building as a reinforcement game and are ready to persist.

Media Companies Always Win: Success Stories

A few standout examples have redefined their industries. One such brand is Red Bull. Known initially for its energy drink, Red Bull has become a global media powerhouse, producing content that resonates with its target audience’s lifestyle.

Watch this video to see how Red Bull transformed their content marketing programs into a powerhouse media company engine.

From hosting extreme sports events to producing music and entertainment content, Red Bull’s media endeavors have solidified its status as more than just a beverage company. Its media company, Red Bull Media House, has even won several awards for its productions, further cementing Red Bull’s position as a leading media brand.

Another brand that has successfully transitioned into a media company is Glossier. This beauty brand has leveraged the power of content to engage its audience and build a loyal community. Glossier’s blog, “Into The Gloss,” was the precursor to the brand itself and continues to be a significant driver of its success.

The blog features beauty tips, product reviews, and interviews with industry professionals, providing valuable content that keeps its audience engaged and coming back for more. By prioritizing content and community, Glossier has managed to stand out in the highly competitive beauty industry and establish itself as a media company.

Challenges of Becoming a Media Company

Another brand that has successfully made this shift is REI. Their blog, Uncommon Path, contains articles, videos, and podcasts on various outdoor topics. They focus on educating their audience and providing value rather than product promotion. This approach has helped them establish themselves as a trusted source of information in the outdoor industry, strengthening their customer relationships and helping them hold a strong market position despite the rise in competitive brands.

To emulate REI’s success, you must invest in the right resources, such as a team with the right skill sets and access to tools for real-time trending analysis, content creation, and distribution. Additionally, you should focus on creating high-quality content that provides value to your audience rather than spamming them with brand messages all day.

It’s easier said than done. Becoming a media company is hard and comes with several challenges.

One of the primary challenges is speed. Creating content quickly and effectively is essential in the media industry. You need the right teams and skill sets to keep pace. You need a system in place to monitor real-time trending topics and create content that is both timely and relevant.

Another challenge is operations and structure. To produce high-quality content at scale, you must be able to adjust your priorities and align with what’s trending in the market and what audiences are talking about. This requires a streamlined decision-making process and a deep understanding of the target audience.

Finally, investing in the right tools and personnel is crucial. Adopting a media company mindset requires access to tools for real-time trending analysis, content creation, and distribution. This includes hiring the right staff, such as editors, copywriters, designers, and analysts. Investing in the right resources may be costly, but keeping up with the speed of the internet and customer decision-making is necessary.

What Does a Media Company Do?

Media companies are content engines. The challenge is that content is already challenging for brands today when you consider the full content lifecycle:

Here is a table with the provided content workstreams:

Content ProductionWriting, editing, producing, filming. This is the “act” of creating content.
Content PlanningMapping what content to create and when. Essentially this is building an editorial calendar.
Content DistributionSyndicating content across multiple channels, including owned media, third-party media, and enterprise social media networks. It’s activating and distributing your content across the PESO marketing model.
Content MeasurementMeasuring the performance of your marketing campaigns, content analysis, and building ROI models.

The Content Lifecycle

Creating content that resonates with your audience and drives business objectives is not a matter of chance. It requires a well-planned and executed content strategy. This strategy is built on several key pillars, each crucial in ensuring your content reaches your target audience and engages and converts them.

Content Planning

Mapping what content to create and when. Essentially, this is building an editorial calendar.

Thoughtful content planning and editorial calendar development are pivotal for media companies seeking to engage audiences consistently over time. The planning process involves assessing brand objectives, audience research, seasonality, partnerships, cultural moments, and more to devise a content roadmap optimized for relevance.

Editorial calendars outline the themes, formats, channel strategies, and publishing cadences month-to-month and quarter-to-quarter. For example, a media company might identify back-to-school content opportunities across blog posts, social media, and video in August. The December calendar may feature gift guides, year-end thought leadership, and holiday campaigns. While calendars provide an advanced content blueprint, they must remain flexible to address emerging trends and news.

With a calendar established, media companies can work cross-functionally to ideate specific pieces that link to monthly themes. The calendar acts as a high-level content framework while allowing creativity and agility in execution. Adjustments happen continually based on performance data and audience feedback. A thoughtful calendar guides the content machine without restricting it.

Content Production

Writing, editing, producing, filming. This is the “act” of creating content.

The content production phase brings a media company’s ideas and creative to life. After planning themes, formats, and narratives, production involves shaping raw insights into audience-ready pieces.

For written content, this means drafting compelling articles, ebooks, social posts, and other assets. Writers translate outlined themes into engaging stories with the brand’s voice. Editing polishes messages for clarity, consistency, and impact.

For visual content, production requires filming footage, conducting interviews, and designing graphics that support videos, podcasts, webinars, and other multimedia. Producers manage technical aspects of assembling shows and episodes.

Agile production workflows allow for rapid content ideation, creation, and refinement. Automation through AI writing and creative tools can also scale output while maintaining quality. Production is where creativity combines with strategy to resonate with target audiences.

Content Optimization

Optimizing search and social media content, such as titles, metadata, tags, etc.

Optimizing content is crucial for improving discoverability and engagement across platforms. For each piece of owned media, media companies should optimize elements like titles, metadata, tags, imagery, captions, and calls-to-action tailored to each channel.

Search engine optimization (SEO) considers how to optimize content for rankings in Google and other search engines. This involves researching relevant keywords and seamlessly integrating them within content and metadata. Optimized titles, meta descriptions, and alt text improve search visibility.

For social media, optimization revolves around customizing titles, captions, and visuals for each platform’s algorithm. Twitter-optimized content looks different from an Instagram or TikTok-first approach. Leveraging multimedia also enhances social engagement.

Continuous testing of different elements identifies the best optimizations for each channel. Analytics provide clear signals of successes and failures. The goal is to refine optimization strategies based on performance data continually.

Dialed-in optimization ensures content reaches its full potential across every platform and surfaces to the right users when needed. The impact of great content multiplies exponentially when effectively optimized.

Content Distribution

Syndicating content across multiple channels, including owned media, third-party media, and enterprise social media networks. It’s activating and distributing your content across the PESO marketing model.

An integrated distribution strategy is key for scaling content reach across the modern media landscape. Leading media companies distribute assets widely through owned properties, social media, paid ads, partnerships, influencers, and syndication.

Owned distribution leverages brand sites, apps, newsletters, and other owned touchpoints. Social posting employs channel-specific content adaptations and engagement strategies. Paid amplification deploys ads to carry content further.

Partnerships allow content integration within co-created assets, sponsored podcasts, events, and more. Pitching earned media stories expands organic visibility. Enlisting influencers as brand advocates also stimulates sharing.

Orchestrating omnichannel distribution relies on workflow automation, detailed channel insights, and governance. Content must be formatted, tagged, and tracked for attribution wherever it travels. Results inform future strategies.

Great content on its own has limited impact. But with an integrated distribution engine, brands can achieve true scale and ubiquity. Distributing assets simultaneously across the entire media ecosystem generates exponential reach.

Here is an expanded version of the content measurement section:

Content Measurement

Measuring the performance of your marketing campaigns, content analysis, and building ROI models.

Robust analytics and measurement enable media companies to optimize content strategies continually based on real data. Leading brands measure engagement, conversions, sentiment, reach, and ROI across every piece of content distributed.

Key performance indicators will vary by content type and channel. For example, social content should track reactions, clicks, shares, comments, and follow-on actions. Earned media analysis examines impressions, qualitative tone, and search visibility lift.

Advanced analysis, like natural language processing, can uncover deeper insights from unstructured content data. Statistical modeling builds attribution to calculate content ROI across buyer journeys.

Ongoing analysis identifies best-performing content across segments, channels, and partnership opportunities. These insights feed back into planning and production to replicate success factors. Underperforming assets are refined or replaced.

In today’s fragmented media universe, measurement is the compass guiding content. Quantifying results at each stage enables agile optimization and strategy pivots. With robust analytics, media brands can continually strengthen engagement and impact.

Here’s a basic example of how a content workflow and approval may look for your brand. Larger media companies will have more complex workflows:

A content approval and workflow used by a media companies.

Here is a rewrite of the provided passage in a similar tone:

Scan the digital landscape today, and it’s easy to find examples of brands stumbling to adapt their content strategies. Websites feature disjointed, sporadic posts. Messaging bounces haphazardly between campaigns. Owned, earned, and paid media all exist in disconnected silos. The rapid pace of modern media exposes these structural deficiencies.

Inside many organizations, the growing pains are evident. Confusion and turf wars slow response times. Rigid workflows stifle creativity. Leadership clings to outdated models that no longer resonate in the digital age. The path forward feels uncertain at best.

To thrive amidst the chaos, brands must evolve into agile media companies themselves. This transformation requires establishing centralized teams to coordinate strategies across specialties. It means optimizing workflows to operate with the speed and adaptability of a newsroom. And it involves implementing processes to connect paid, earned, shared, and owned channels into a cohesive ecosystem.

The brands that act boldly to transform will gain an unassailable advantage. Those that cling to the past risk fading into irrelevance. The writing is clearly on the wall: evolve or dissolve. For ambitious brands, becoming a media company is the only way forward.


What does it mean for brands to become media companies?

When brands become media companies, it signifies a shift from merely advertising products or services to producing and distributing original content. It focuses on storytelling, audience engagement, and providing value beyond traditional offerings.

Why are brands becoming media companies?

Brands are evolving into media companies to take control of their narratives, foster stronger relationships with their audience, and position themselves as thought leaders. This transformation allows them to provide value beyond their standard offerings and builds a deeper connection with their audience.

What are the benefits of brands becoming media companies?

Transitioning into a media company helps brands to create tailored, engaging content that creates action. It also gives them control over their messaging, establishes authority, and opens up new avenues to reach audiences directly.

What challenges do brands face when becoming media companies?

Brands may encounter several challenges in this transition, including creating a consistent and compelling content strategy, ensuring content quality, understanding audience preferences, and allocating resources for content creation and distribution.

What challenges do brands face when becoming media companies?

Brands may encounter several challenges in this transition, including creating a consistent and compelling content strategy, ensuring content quality, understanding audience preferences, and allocating resources for content creation and distribution.

What types of content do brands create as media companies?

Brands that adopt media company characteristics create content like blog posts, white papers, case studies, webinars, podcasts, videos, and social media content. This content typically provides value and aligns with the brand’s ethos and areas of expertise.

How does a brand transition into a media company?

The transition starts with a clear content strategy, which includes identifying audience needs and interests and deciding on the type and frequency of content. Then, resources must be allocated for content creation and distribution, and the strategy’s effectiveness should be assessed regularly.

What role does social media play for brands as media companies?

Social media is a vital platform for brands acting as media companies. It gives them direct access to engage with customers, gather feedback, and distribute brand messages into the marketplace. It also allows for user-generated content, further boosting audience engagement.

How can brands measure the success of their transition into media companies?

The success of a brand’s transition into a media company can be measured through metrics like audience engagement, content reach, leads generated, and conversion rates. In addition, audience feedback and sentiment analysis can also yield valuable insights.

How does becoming a media company impact a brand’s relationship with its audience?

The transition to a media company can significantly enhance a brand’s relationship with its audience. By providing valuable, engaging content, a brand can establish trust, foster loyalty, and better understand its audience’s needs and preferences.

What future trends might be seen in brands becoming media companies?

Trends could include greater content personalization, increased multimedia and interactive content use, audience participation, and substantial reliance on AI and data analytics to inform content strategies.

Michael Brito

Michael Brito is a Digital OG. He’s been building brands online since Al Gore invented the Internet. You can connect with him on LinkedIn or Twitter.