Author: Michele Linn

Michele is the Vice President of Content at the Content Marketing Institute. She is one of those people who truly loves what she does and who she works with. You can follow her on Twitter at @michelelinn.

By mlinn published November 27, 2015

A 4-Step Approach to Create Content That Hits the Mark


At CMI, we’re in the thick of planning, and there is one theme that surfaces repeatedly: We need to double down on what is working well – and stop doing what isn’t.

There is no simple way to figure out what is effective. However, the first step is to start thinking about effectiveness when you start creating the content. Read on to get some tips from the community at large as well as our panel of B2C research roundtable participants:Continue Reading

By mlinn published November 20, 2015

How to Make Marketing Meetings More Productive and Less Soul-Sucking


Think fast: How much of your time is spent in meetings? How much of that time is well spent? (And, if you are a manager, how much do these meetings cost when you calculate the participants’ effective hourly rate?)

In this year’s B2C content marketing research, we asked how often content marketing teams meet and how valuable those meetings are. In general, effective content marketers who meet more often get more value from their meetings.Continue Reading

By mlinn published November 6, 2015

Why Strong Writing Is a Skill to Prioritize in 2016 (And How to Hire Great Writers)


Last week, I shared one surprising stat from our B2B research: Only 44% of B2B marketers know what success and effectiveness look like. Another finding that jumped out at me – having internal content creators become stronger writers was the lowest-ranked priority for marketers. Really?

We took this finding to our B2B research roundtable panelists, and they were surprised too, saying that writing is a discipline that needs to be prioritized and practiced. Read on to get some practical ideas from our B2B roundtable on how to do that and learn what the CMI LinkedIn community suggests you consider when looking for a great writer.Continue Reading

By mlinn published October 30, 2015

One Obvious Reason Why Content Marketers Are Not Feeling Effective


One stat from this year’s B2B content marketing research surprised me:

Only 44% of B2B marketers are clear on what content marketing success looks like.

To me, this is incredible, especially as it plays into another finding – only 30% of marketers consider themselves to be effective.Continue Reading

By mlinn published October 23, 2015

The One Brief Statement That Will Refine Your Content Marketing

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Do you know exactly who you are creating content for and why? What does your brand stand for and why do you publish?

Does everyone in your organization know why?

If you – and everybody in your company – can answer yes, congratulations! You have one of the key components you need to be successful at content marketing. You also are in the minority of content marketers.Continue Reading

By mlinn published October 22, 2015

Content Reuse: Behind the Scenes With CMI


While I am far from an expert in intelligent content, many things about its concepts make sense to me, and I was looking for a project where I could apply its principles.  Enter our content marketing examples, which was something we used to collect in a very ad hoc way. Now we are much more systematic with how we collect and reuse our examples. Not only does this save time on our end, but we can provide better output for our audience as well.

But let me take a step back and first share what prompted us to move to an intelligent content process.Continue Reading

By mlinn published October 2, 2015

Metadata 101 for Content Marketers: Your Questions Answered


Call me a nerd (you wouldn’t be the first), but I am fascinated by metadata.

For years, I have been thinking about the importance of organizing our content on the CMI website so people can find what’s most important to them instead of what’s most recent, and I know metadata is the key to this. (In fact, I often think about this post from Doug Kessler on what he referred to as library marketing waaaay back in 2010.)Continue Reading

By mlinn published September 7, 2015

How to Get the Right Content to the Right People at the Right Time: A Look at This American Life


Any This American Life  junkies out there? This public radio show, which reaches over 2 million listeners every week, captures extraordinary stories of ordinary Americans. We fans are a passionate crowd. We easily recall our favorite episodes. My friends often hear me say, “Did you catch that story of  . . . ?” (Don’t even get me started on the episode about the blind boy who rode a bicycle.)

While I am ridiculously interested in how these stories are told, I also use This American Life as a case study for how to present your stories to the right person at the right time.Continue Reading

By mlinn published July 21, 2015

3 Worlds Unite: Content Marketing, Content Strategy, and Intelligent Content


At the Content Marketing Institute, we talk a lot about content marketing, content strategy, and intelligent content. And we have a lot (a lot) of internal conversations around how these fit together – and specifically why marketers need to understand each and how we at CMI can best help.

The short answer: What makes your brand exceptional is the entire set of experiences people have related to your organization. The experiences created by your content marketing go only so far.Continue Reading

By mlinn published July 2, 2015

3 Content Strategy Practices That Will Make You a Better Content Marketer


My recent revelation: When I write, my audience is always top of mind. However, when I look across all of CMI’s websites and channels, I worry that we’re not providing an exceptional experience for our community at all points. For instance, we may have answers to people’s questions, but can people find what they need? Is every point in their experience a good one?

While I continue to refine my content marketing skills, I also am turning more of my attention to content strategy.Continue Reading