Author: Clare McDermott

Clare McDermott is the founder of Ravn Research, a research consultancy that helps brands produce original research and C-level content. Connect with her on LinkedIn. Follow her on Twitter clare_mcd.

By clare-mcdermott published January 9, 2015

The Wizard of Moz Talks SEO and Shares Tips for 2015


Rand Fishkin, founder of Moz, a leading inbound marketing software company, and host of the popular video series, Whiteboard Fridays, answers questions about what he wishes marketers understood about search, and tips for upping your game this year.

Marketers seem ambivalent about search these days. As Google focuses more and more on quality content, there’s a growing sense among marketers that search isn’t as important as it once was. What do you wish marketers understood about SEO, and what are their blind spots?Continue Reading

By clare-mcdermott published December 30, 2014

19 CCO Articles in 2014 That Every Marketer Should Read

CMI_CCO_1230_Clare-01Over the last 12 months, CCO magazine doubled down on content marketing strategy for executives. While we still publish some how-to, tactical information, we are more focused on publishing content that helps marketers refine their existing systems, and prepare for future disruptions. Picking my favorite articles from 2014 is a little like asking me to choose my favorite child, but I did it. (Note: The titles are from the print version.) If you have a print issue, look these up, as we often feature sidebar content that doesn’t make it online. (If you don’t subscribe to the print version of CCO, make sure you sign up today – it’s free.)Continue Reading

By clare-mcdermott published December 23, 2014

Star Shares What Content Marketers Can Learn From The Entertainment Industry


I had the pleasure of interviewing Academy Award winner Kevin Spacey at this year’s Content Marketing World. Spacey opens up in this interview about nurturing creatives in the entertainment industry, collaborating with non-media brands, and crafting binge-worthy stories.

McDermott: Do you think non-media brands can pull off the kind of rich, nuanced storytelling we see coming out of the entertainment industry?Continue Reading

By clare-mcdermott published November 4, 2014

Choosing the Right Marketing Technology: The Yelp of Software Reviews

G2 How do you make the right choice when buying content marketing technology? You can start the review process with G2 Crowd, which offers crowd-sourced enterprise software reviews. But unlike some review platforms under fire for spam, G2 authenticates each review by connecting members to their LinkedIn profiles.

G2 disrupts a market dominated by big market research firms like Gartner and Forrester because it covers smaller tech startups and highly specialized verticals – something the big research firms can’t duplicate cost effectively. And the results of G2’s lengthy surveys (as many as 60 questions) offer extremely thorough, robust information about individual products, as well as aggregated information about how users are deploying and optimizing software.Continue Reading

By clare-mcdermott published August 28, 2014

7 Inspiring Lessons from 2014’s Top Content Marketers

content-marketer-awards-2014One of the best ways to learn about the content marketing industry is to study what others are doing. Over the past three years, it’s been our pleasure to observe the field and, more specifically, identify those who are making us think about successful content marketing in new ways.Continue Reading

By clare-mcdermott published March 7, 2014

The Artist’s Perspective: Collaborating on Content Creation

man with camera-artist-content creationThomas Hawk’s hauntingly beautiful — and often gritty — photography is admired across the world. He calls himself a “photography factory” and aims to capture 1 million photos before he dies. Among his favorites are images of American cities, particularly those in various states of decay: “I think people will want to go back in the future and remember a different type of America; a place that was unique to their timeframe,” he says.

But to say Hawk is revered for his art is only partially true. He’s also an avid blogger who writes about a wide range of issues, including new media, technology, creative commons, and copyright law. With a massive fan base across Flickr and Google+ in particular (more than 6.5 million followers), Hawk is sought by brands to photograph events and locations, and share this visual content with his audience. Yet, Hawk cautions: “Don’t ask artists to shill your story.” Continue Reading

By clare-mcdermott published November 29, 2013

Why Podcasting is a Huge Content Marketing Opportunity

chris brogan headshotEight years ago, podcasting was held up as the “Next Big Thing.” Chris Brogan, author of The Impact Equation and longtime podcasting fan, thinks it’s finally ready to take off as a viable channel in your content marketing planContinue Reading

By clare-mcdermott published August 16, 2013

How to Use Brand Storytelling to Make Your Customers Go Bananas

disco pants-brand storytellingBetabrand sells clothing with a quirky, California feel. The company has managed to turn a relatively small product line into an internet sensation by offering strangely appealing oddities (e.g., Disco Pants) and by encouraging customers to become brand storytellers by sharing photos and videos of their lives.

Now the company’s founder, Chris Lindland, is poised to push Betabrand from boutique to blockbuster. But can he sell a pair of khaki pants as successfully as he sells Executive Hoodies and Beardymon Mullet Socks? Read on to find out why we think he can.Continue Reading

By clare-mcdermott published August 4, 2013

Is Your Thought Leadership Strategy Using Research Wisely?

George Stenitzer

George Stenitzer, CMO of Tellabs

According to CMI, 57 percent of marketers feel publishing original research is an effective content tactic. But let’s be frank, much of what passes for “research” is just a small cut above a Survey Monkey experiment led by your summer intern (no offense to hard-working summer interns).

Tellabs happens to do original research well. Really well. And George Stenitzer, CMO of Tellabs, did not disappoint when we asked him to talk about Tellabs’ success using original, robust original research as part of its thought leadership strategy.Continue Reading

By clare-mcdermott published May 8, 2013

Corporate Storytelling: Cross the Paid, Earned, and Owned Divide

crossing paid, earned, owned media dividePaid, earned, and owned media. The phrase may be a marketing workhorse, but with the explosion of digital channels and new technologies, “paid, earned, and owned” is a lot less useful as a way of looking at media strategy and spend than it used to be. As the lines between paid, earned and owned media have eroded beyond recognition, marketers need to rethink how they spend marketing dollars, staff teams, drive strategy, and collaborate with agenciesContinue Reading