Author: Clare McDermott

Clare McDermott is the editor of Chief Content Officer magazine and owner of SoloPortfolio, a Boston-based content marketing provider for professional service firms.You can follow her @soloportfolio.

By clare-mcdermott published June 23, 2017

Read These Books: Summer Recommendations from Content Marketers

books-summer-recommendations-content-marketersNeed something to snap you out of your slump? Turn to your fellow marketers for advice about books and a few podcasts that are practical, inspirational, and downright fun.Continue Reading

By clare-mcdermott published June 18, 2017

How The Weather Channel Does Social Media

weather-channel-social-mediaJennifer Watson began her career as an on-camera meteorologist in Mississippi and Alabama, where she also helped manage both stations’ social media channels and weather blogs. Taking a job as a social media specialist with Atlanta-based The Weather Channel was a natural transition for her. “The Weather Channel is a dream job for a weather nerd like me,” says Watson.Continue Reading

By clare-mcdermott published June 16, 2017

Print’s Very Much Alive: Magazine Examples from 9 Brands

print-alive-magazine-examples-brandsWhile marketers flood new digital channels and explore the latest amplification strategies, a number of companies continue to invest in the “traditional” media of print to reach their customers.

CMI research reveals that while print is not a particularly popular way to distribute content – approximately one-third of B2B and B2C marketers use print – those who do use print consider it the most important channel after email and LinkedIn (for B2B) and Facebook (for B2C).

Read on for inspiration across industries, marketing goals, and styles.

thinkMoney by TD Ameritrade

Agency/Publisher: T3 Custom

tdameritrade-thinkmoney-magazine

Now in its 10th year, thinkMoney has won many editorial and design awards, and is often spotlighted as a custom magazine done right. Why all the attention? Quality in the details. thinkMoney targets options traders – a very particular niche within the investing world. Its audience is smart, risk-taking and even a bit contrarian … so the magazine must have a look, feel, and voice that appeal to that highly discriminating audience. For example, thinkMoney only hires writers and editors who are themselves active traders. And the design of the magazine is completely original – the magazine’s covers use bold visuals that include subtle humor and a side wink. All this adds up to a beautifully executed publication that educates a tough-to-impress crowd.

.@TDAmeritrade thinkMoney mag has look, feel, & voice of its highly discriminating audience @soloportfolio Click To Tweet

Outcomes Magazine by Eyeview

outcomes-magazine-eyeview

Video marketing company Eyeview launched a print magazine in early 2017. CMO Jeff Fagel explains that the format allows room for studying complex topics in digital media, artificial intelligence, and video marketing. And the company’s roster of contributors in the inaugural issue – among them journalists and well-regarded analysts – is just the sort of group that can pull off meaty reporting.

Live by Alberta Theater Projects

Agency/Publisher: RedPoint Media & Marketing Solutions

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Alberta Theater Projects has been investing in developing and staging plays since the 1970s, but a few years ago it wondered whether it could deliver more than the traditional playbill. The result: Live magazine, a behind-the-scenes look at what it takes to create and stage plays. By giving ticketholders a chance to see all the details and challenges involved in theater, ATP hopes to create deeper relationships with its audience. The magazine mixes magnificent photography and heartfelt writing about the beauty of theatrical expression.

.@ATPlive uses its magazine to create deeper relationships with its audiences, says @soloportfolio. Click To Tweet

Four Seasons Magazine by Four Seasons

Agency/Publisher: Pace

four-seasons-magazine

It’s really no surprise that a print magazine by Four Seasons is as beautiful and sumptuous as the destinations it highlights. Rather than focus on traditional “what-to-see” content for its top destinations, the magazine focuses on multi-sensory experiences – from a profile of top truffle farmers in Australia to a photo exploration of out-of-the-way finds in Tokyo’s Nakameguro neighborhood. Four Seasons Magazine boasts over 1 million readers and agency Pace says readers who engage with the magazine spend more money with the hotel brand (online magazine readership boosts revenue per booking by 42%).

ARC Magazine by Lincoln Electric

arc-magazine-lincoln-electric

ARC Magazine bills itself as a “welding lifestyle magazine” – and we applaud the quirky phrase. Launched in 2015, the magazine targets the metal-forming and -fabricating community with content that is both educational and entertaining. Rather than dwell on fabrication techniques or materials – though it covers both – the magazine focuses on the people behind interesting projects and ideas. Craig Coffey, manager of Lincoln’s marketing communication team, says the awards the magazine has received are due in large part to the way it is produced: “The fact that our team crafts each issue in-house, from cover to cover, makes this recognition even more special. It’s a testament to the talent and dedication of everyone at Lincoln that’s contributed to ARC since its inception.”

Our Trust by Columbia Basin Trust

Agency/Publisher: Canada Wide Media

our-trust-magazine

This new print publication raises awareness about the projects and programs sponsored by the Columbia Basin Trust. The magazine prints and mails once per year, and replaces a report that had the look and feel of an annual report or newsletter rather than a features-driven magazine. By investing in photography, design, and writing, the Columbia Basin Trust can tell more compelling stories about its environmental stewardship today and its vision for the future.

.@TheTrustInfo replaced its annual report with a features-driven magazine, says @soloportfolio. Click To Tweet

HOG Magazine for Harley-Davidson

Agency/Publisher: GS Design

hog-magazine-harley-davidson

Dedicated to motorcycle enthusiasts with a special passion for Harley-Davidson, HOG Magazine elevates biking to an art form. It was named Best Print Magazine in 2016 by the Content Marketing Awards judges for its beautiful design, inspired editorial, and commitment to the Harley Owners Group community. Each issue includes member stories, gear reviews, ideas for customizing bikes, and suggested road trips. The true beauty of the HOG glossy, however, is how it all comes together with arresting photography and design.

Project M by Allianz SE

Agency/Publisher: C3 Creative Code & Content GmbH

project_m_magazine

Allianz SE is a leading voice in the field of pensions, and its Project M magazine shows off its subject-matter expertise in asset management and life insurance. The publication uses journalists, academics, and experts to examine key issues in the industry, plus its rich and modern design puts it on par with established media publications.

Walmart World by Walmart

Agency/Publisher: Pace

Pace-walmart-world

Walmart World is an internal publication tasked with increasing employee engagement, enhancing job success and satisfaction, and building stronger connections among Walmart’s 1.3 million associates. It’s an ambitious aim for any organization (let alone one with such a diverse and dispersed audience base). The magazine meets the challenge deftly by empowering employees to shape the magazine’s content. A monthly outreach letter to personnel managers solicits story ideas and submissions, while an associate-expert panel surfaces additional topics, and gathers quotes and feedback.

Conclusion

These nine brands clearly illustrate that print is alive – and well. Do you still have legacy print projects or are you considering adding a print component to your marketing? Make sure you connect them to your overall content marketing strategy to increase their likelihood of success. And don’t think of them as print-only activities – look for ways to weave them into your digital communication and vice versa. That way your content marketing program can maximize the benefits of both digital and print.

A version of this article originally appeared in the June issue of Chief Content Officer. Sign up to receive your free subscription to our bimonthly, print magazine.

Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute

By clare-mcdermott published May 14, 2017

Social Media Advice From Mark Hamill      

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The iconic actor Mark Hamill delivered a moving keynote talk at Content Marketing World, touching on his early love of comic heroes, the gratitude he feels toward fans, what it was like to reprise the role of Luke Skywalker in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and his new show called Pop Culture Quest.

What stood out to us? Mark’s social media savvy (even while he professes to be a neophyte). Read on to hear about his foray into the Twitterverse and the lessons he’s learned from his successes … as well as his wrong turns.Continue Reading

By clare-mcdermott published March 7, 2017

7 Apps and Tools Obsessed by Content Marketers

apps-tools-obsessed-content-marketers

We all have those go-to apps or tools. You know, those icons you instinctively tap and that frustrate you when they’re switched to a different position on the page. Or those sites you don’t even need to bookmark because they pop up when you type the first letter in the address bar.

I appreciate learning what others consider their most-loved sites or apps so I can consider adding them to my repertoire. This month, I asked seven people connected to CCO magazine to share with you a manageable list of a diverse group of must-have tools to help improve your work life.Continue Reading

By clare-mcdermott published March 5, 2017

Best-Selling Author Shares Thoughts on Storytelling, Inspiration, and Creative Process

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Before he was the best-selling author of The Martian, Andy Weir was a computer programmer who wrote short stories as a hobby. In his words, “I thought I was writing for a tiny niche audience of hard-core science dorks.” Now working on his second manuscript with Random House, Weir reflects on the journey he took to get here.Continue Reading

By clare-mcdermott published January 26, 2017

How Virtual Reality Could Change Content Marketing

virtual-reality-change-content-marketing

No longer the domains of ultra-early adopters and video gamers, virtual reality and augmented reality are poised to take off in the coming 24 months.

“We see qualities in VR/AR technology that can take this from niche-use case to a device as ubiquitous as the smartphone,” Goldman Sachs Research wrote in its Virtual and Augmented Reality report.Continue Reading

By clare-mcdermott published December 25, 2016

Must-Know Topics, Companies, and People for 2016 [CCO Recap]

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For all of us at CCO magazine, 2016 felt like the year when content marketing truly grew up. The year marketers transformed from dabblers – warily testing new channels and tactics – to confident practitioners focused on quality over quantity.

Our magazine focuses on the topics that will push marketers to become better: more efficient, more creative, more ambitious, and even more fulfilled. We know we’ve hit on a worthwhile topic when it’s not easy to summarize into a quick sound bite. The tough ones take time and deep expertise from our community of contributors to pull off well … but the results are worthwhile. Here are my favorites from the year.Continue Reading

By clare-mcdermott published November 22, 2016

How to Differentiate Content in a Crowded Field [Example from Adidas]

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Adidas Group’s corporate communications team recently launched a new content platform for athletes and athletes at heart. Often erroneously thought of as a single shoe brand, adidas Group is a product design and development powerhouse that owns a bevy of athletic brands including Reebok, TaylorMade, CCM, and the eponymous Adidas brand.

We spoke to the group’s Senior Director of Content Strategy and Creation Kirsten Keck and Senior Manager of Content Strategy Frank Thomas to understand the strategy behind the new venture, and how the company plans to differentiate itself in a crowded field.Continue Reading

By clare-mcdermott published November 6, 2016

How to Transform Complex Data Into Understandable and Shareable Visuals

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Scott Berinato is the senior editor of Harvard Business Review and author of Good Charts: The HBR Guide to Making Smarter, More Persuasive Data Visualizations. Passionate about the transformative power of data visualization inside organizations, Berinato shares how he uses data visualization at HBR and why he thinks we are living on the cusp of a visual data revolution.

Berinato’s book is a primer for non-experts to understand the basic tenets of data visualization. For both content marketers and business managers, effective data visualization is much more than creating a flashy graphic.Continue Reading