Author: Joseph Kalinowski

JK is the Creative Director for Content Marketing Institute. He has worked as an art director for 16 years in both the advertising and publishing industries. His role at CMI is to assist with the ideation and creation of projects and to work with the CMI staff to ensure they achieve our goals. Follow JK on Twitter @jkkalinowski.

By joek published May 16, 2019

3 Questions Your Creative Director Wants You to Answer

You’re staring at your blog, content hub, or corporate website, thinking it looks a little dated.

Or maybe you’re staring at an email from your boss (or your boss’s boss) that simply mandates a redesign of your content vehicles.

Is it the font? Is it the colors? The icons? Does it need a redesign or just a face-lift?

Before you run to your creative director, take a beat.

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By joek published November 23, 2018

3 Toy Brands Unexpectedly Spark a Content Marketing Adventure

I am a bit of a nerd and I hold to that moniker with pride. From comic books and artwork to action figures and movie memorabilia, my office (and any corner of the house my better half allows me to have) is packed with pieces of pop culture.

Speaking of my lovely wife, she accepted her fate when she married this “man-child” 20 years ago, and a bit of a hat tip to her, as she finally has agreed to let me put Star Wars sheets on our bed. (Thanks, Honey!)

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By joek published March 1, 2017

Things to Consider Before Crowdsourcing Design


I was trying to help a friend. His association needed a new logo.

Now, creative directors, designers, and everybody else who works in the visual arts have a term that we usually dread hearing – design-by-committee. Sometimes this isn’t a bad thing. In this case, after a couple rounds – with plenty of input from the committee – I came up with a logo that seemed to encompass all of the suggestions.Continue Reading

By joek published February 21, 2016

Bringing Ideas to Life: A Look Behind the Creative Curtain


I was jotting down notes in one of the many journals I have around the office (or The Cave, as it is known around here). I happened to come across multiple pages of notes and sketches created around this time last year when we were formulating ideas for the Content Marketing World 2015 theme. After poring over the pages, I thought it would be neat to share with you the creative process for our biggest project – from simple ideas on paper to the final products – and how we all worked together to get it done.Continue Reading

By joek published November 11, 2015

Is Design Mostly Dead? DIY Platforms vs. Hiring a Pro


Just because I know how to use a hammer and nails doesn’t mean I can build myself a house. Sure, I may be able to craft a perfectly adequate birdhouse, but definitely not a house where my family would live.

As a professional graphic designer, I bring out my hammer-and-nails quip when I get frustrated by the proliferation of images gaining steam with the recent tech trend of do-it-yourself design platforms. With drag-and-drop artwork and a multitude of pre-loaded fonts and templates, someone with little to no design skill can create a piece of artwork.Continue Reading

By joek published July 6, 2012

Content Marketing Lessons from Ferris Bueller and Silent Bob

content marketing lessons from ferris bueller, CMII just got home from a nice week-long, off-the-grid vacation with the family. Every year I take a little time to prop myself up by the lake for some fishing, reading, a few cold ones, and general laziness. This year’s vacation reading list included a couple magazines, a couple eBooks, and “Tough Sh*t. Life Advice from a Fat, Lazy Slob Who Did Good,” by Kevin Smith. 

Smith’s book is a great read, especially for those who appreciate his humor. Those of you who attended Content Marketing World last year had the opportunity to hear Smith tell his “Power of Story” in his own “lively” way. In “Tough Sh*t,” Smith really details his film career, his war with Southwest Airlines, and the creation of his new career as a successful podcaster.Continue Reading