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Inbound Marketing Blog

Content Marketing v’s Context Marketing

Posted by Stacie Chalmers on 12-Sep-2013 07:08:00

Its all about the context marketingFor most marketers the term ‘Content Marketing’ is not new. It’s an important online marketing strategy that includes: 

  • Daily, social media engagements and sharing
  • Weekly, publishing educational blog articles
  • Monthly, producing instructional videos
  • Quarterly, guides and ebooks for lead generation and thought leadership
  • And of course, regular emails for lead nurturing

I’ve written about Content Marketing many times on this blog, sharing the process of identifying buyer personas, pain points and needs, and publishing relevant content. I’ve also shared calendars to help plan a content marketing schedule to ensure consistency and relevancy. Links to those resources are at the end of this article.

So what is Context Marketing? And where does it fit into the marketing mix?

At a high level Context Marketing is about delivering the right content, to the right person at the right time.  We talk about the buyer journey – the process our prospects and leads take before they buy, and publishing helpful and timely content to help them move along the buying process. But the reality is, as we’re all unique, so is our need for different information, at different times as we work through the buying process. This means a one size fits all approach to content marketing isn’t going to work for everyone. 

Look at it this way, if content marketing is a strategy, context marketing is the philosophy that drives an effective content marketing strategy. Makes perfect sense to me, but sounds difficult to implement.

Thankfully the internet and technology make this possible – of course! The key is to understand how to implement Context Marketing into your Content Marketing Strategy.

Here’s a simple example:

I have a problem and I believe Blue Widgets are the solution. The process is to understand why I need blue widgets:

  1. How blue widgets will help me?
  2. Who supplies blue widgets?
  3. From whom should I buy my blue widgets?
  4. How much should I pay for my blue widgets?

The way most companies publish  content is to share all the right information, but they publish it on their own timeline. For example, every 3 days you might send an email that provides additional information to help move people through the buying process to get them closer to buying.  But if they’re not ready for that information – it’s irrelevant to them at that time.

So how can marketers, send the information people want on their timeline?

Technology now allows us to track peoples’ behaviour and engagement with our company online. It could be a website visit, another ebook download, a video they watched or social media interaction – based on what they do, you can then send an email to your leads with relevant information on their time. 

Here’s a simple example to highlight how it might work:

If it takes LeadA one week before they visit your Testimonials page – then they don’t receive the Case Study video for a week. However, LeadB might visit your Testimonials page within a day, you don’t make them wait a week to get this important information you need to send them a case study video that day. It’s relevant to them, in line with the buying process and on their timeline.

Or another example might be that LeadC is interested in your Blue Widgets so all they receive is information about Blue Widgets, not your entire range of products and services. This means the content is highly relevant to the lead and they don’t get annoyed with information from your company that is irrelevant to them at that time. 

To learn more about Context Marketing download this new ebook from Hubspot: 

7 Elements of Context Marketing.

To help you with your Content Marketing Strategy check out some additional resources below.

Additional Resources

Improve Your Content Marketing With Some Love

5 Steps To Help Marketers Create Content Marketing People Will Love

4 Content Marketing Templates To Plan 90 Days of Marketing

7 Steps To Help Small Business Plan Content Marketing

Other Articles You May Find Helpful:

Topics: Content Marketing, Context Marketing


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