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10 Content Marketing Articles Readers (Like You) Loved This Year

Publisched on
December 23, 2021


How many of the 249-plus blog articles published in 2021 by CMI did you read? While I read each one (it’s my job), I’m guessing very few others did. I get that – we’re bombarded with content every day.

To help everyone get the highlights, I put together the 10 most popular posts from the past year based on data from BuzzSumo and Google Analytics (including social shares, email conversions, page views, and unique linking domains) and a dose of editorial discretion.

You’ll find all these articles have one thing in common: The authors share a ton of knowledge you can use right away in your day-to-day content marketing.

Given that everyone feels pressed for time these days, I listed the articles based on time to read (shortest to longest). I hope you find them as helpful as I did.

Time to read: 4 minutes

Author: Kate Bradley Chernis

Why read this: You don’t have to follow all those school-taught English lessons in your writing, but you do need to make sure your content is good. Kate shares some “easy-peasy” ways to spice up your content to entice your audience to read and take action.

Tweetable tip:

Read your writing out loud. If it feels awkward coming out of your mouth, it will read awkwardly to the #content consumer, says @LatelyAIKately via @Brandlovellc @CMIContent. #WritingTips Click To Tweet

Time to read: 7 minutes

Author: Nady Khoja

Why read this: No matter how large your team, repurposing can be the solution to lighten the content creation workload. It’s also an excellent way to get your content in front of more people in formats they might prefer. Nadya shares how to get more from the content you’re creating. This one’s for anyone who’s ever wished they didn’t have so many pieces to write or edit in such a short time or who’s felt challenged to develop enough original content for multiple channels.

Tweetable tip:

Spin off a larger piece of #content into smaller pieces. Or combine several blog posts into a comprehensive guide, says @NadyaKhoja via @Brandlovellc @CMIContent. Click To Tweet

Time to read: 8 minutes

Author: Kim Moutsos

Why read this: Don’t read it if you believe ideas will always come to you when you need them. But give this one a look when you’re ready to dig in and unearth the hidden content opportunities all around you. Kim leads you down productive paths for finding raw materials and polishing them into something brilliant.

Tweetable tip:

Dig into your competitors' #content to uncover topics, audience reactions, and channels. Then outdo them, says @KMoutsos via @CMIContent. Click To Tweet

Time to read: 11 minutes

Author: Shane Barker

Why read this: Maybe you already drive sufficient conversions. But do you really want to settle for sufficient? Shane offers ideas for getting more visitors to convert – including tips for making your content more engaging content, from the headline to the calls to action.

Tweetable tip:

Your headline is the bait. Your intro is the hook, says @shane_barker via @CMIContent. #WritingTips Click To Tweet

Time to read: 11 minutes

Author: Jodi Harris

Why read this: Your content marketing program will be judged by the impact it makes on your business’s bottom line. Jodi offers tips, templates, and techniques to help you make sure you’re measuring (and acting on) things that make a difference.

Tweetable tip:

Know where your company’s priorities lie to decide which #ContentMarketing goals to measure, then figure out which metrics to track, advises @joderama via @Brandlovellc @CMIContent. Click To Tweet

Time to read: 15 minutes

Author: Mike Murray

Why read this: 2021 is almost over. But the 21 SEO tips, tools, tactics, and trends Mike Murray offered at the beginning of the year can still help you protect your rankings – and maybe even gain an edge.

Tweetable tip:

@Google's passages feature helps searchers find sections of web page #content that answer their questions, which could help #SEO efforts, says @MikeOnlineCoach via @Brandlovellc @CMIContent. Click To Tweet

Time to read: 17 minutes

Author: Darek Black

Why read this: Your content must earn readers’ trust in order to get them to come back again, subscribe to your newsletter, buy your product, or take some other desirable action. If you create content that feels stilted, monotone, or academic, they may never return. Conversational copy offers the antidote to monotone content. Darek offers tips (not rules) for content that opens the door for connection – from one human being to another.

Tweetable tip:

In the name of conversational #copy, dismiss the grammar law that says never end a sentence with a preposition, says @ContentStride via @Brandlovellc @CMIContent. #WritingTips Click To Tweet

Time to read: 18 minutes

Author: Stephanie Stahl

Why read this: CMI’s Visual Storytelling Summit offered stories, lessons, and examples that inspired, made people laugh, made them cry, and got them motivated. Stephanie rounds up the highlights you may have missed (or forgotten about). And you can click through to each session to watch on demand (a single registration form gives you access to all the sessions you select).

Tweetable tip:

Livestreaming can build your brand, connect on a deeper level with your audience, and support the sales process and the sales cycle, says @dylan_hey via @EditorStahl @Brandlovellc @CMIContent. Click To Tweet

Time to read: 22 minutes

Author: Ann Gynn

Why read this: Earlier this year, we asked Content Marketing World speakers what irritates them about our industry. They came back with a lot to say. Many of their comments fall into a few overarching categories: strategy, audience, and the content itself. Read this one to see if the things that drive you crazy about the practice we all love made the list (and ideas for what you can do to counter them).

Tweetable tip:

It's time to start creating evergreen #content and stop wasting time, money, and energy on disposable, single-use content, says @carlijnpostma via @AnnGynn @Brandlovellc @CMIContent. #CMWorld Click To Tweet

Time to read: 26 minutes

Author: Aaron Orendorff

What you’ll learn: Aaron’s article ends near the top of readers’ favorites year after year. (It first appeared in 2016, and we updated it earlier this year.) Why so popular? Figuring out which social media tools you should invest in is overwhelming – and it seems like it gets more complicated every year. Fifty influential online marketers share their top social media tool (and why they love it). Not every tool on the list will make sense for you, but it’s a great place to start your research (or gather social proof for tools you’re already considering).

Tweetable tip:

Use text overlays on videos – 80% of video ads on #Facebook are watched with sound off, says @MariSmith via @CMIContent. Click To Tweet

We’re so thankful for our readers and the contributors who share their knowledge with us. If you’d like to write for us in 2022, read our blogging guidelines, then follow the instructions for submitting an article.

Don’t miss out on the 249-plus blog posts from CMI in 2022. Subscribe to the free daily or weekly newsletter.

Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute





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