Article

Jill Grozalsky
Jill Grozalsky 27 April 2017

A Context Marketing Criteria for the Hyper-Engaged Customer

There’s no doubt that the consumer is more powerful than ever. Forrester and Gartner (and McKinsey, and BCG, and Bain and Accenture and the list goes on) have researched and written about it extensively.

There’s no doubt that the consumer is more powerful than ever. Forrester and Gartner (and McKinsey, and BCG, and Bain and Accenture and the list goes on) have researched and written about it extensively. And if you are in the industry of helping clients with their digital ecosystems, I can guarantee that they have read up on and discussed the power of the consumer fairly extensively.

Since we all know that consumers are more empowered than ever, the question that is continuously asked is how to deliver the ideal customer experience and how to meet the needs of users who are more engaged, informed and connected than ever.

Enter: context marketing.

Context marketing is marketing to a user based on their engagement with your organization and the context of their interactions to date. While it sounds similar to personalization it takes that 1:1 conversation that we refer to when talking about personalization and brings it a bit further. Where personalization typically delivers a tailored message based on a “if this, then that” formula (i.e. if a user has viewed this page on the site, then show them this piece of content on their next/current visit), context marketing combines visit history with situational information (i.e. consumer and business circumstances) and delivers targeted content that is more relevant, and thus, more likely to resonate with a user at that given time and build customer loyalty.

With context, marketers can get a glimpse as to where customers are in their buying journey and deliver content at the point (and in the right format) when they’ll be most receptive to it. Understanding each customer’s unique journey is dependent on a clear picture of the triggers at every step in the journey, from awareness, research and interest to conversion. With over 3,500 marketing technologies out there, some may find it a challenge to build the right suite of tools to deliver on this promise of “right message at the right time.” However, today most marketers have tools in their tool box that puts context marketing within reach.

Technology aside, it’s become a matter of making sure that the right information is being collected/is accessible  before executing on context marketing strategies. What types of information count as the "right information?" Let's take a look.

  • Centralized User Data:  Having a system in place to track user behaviors and interactions is a must have. Equally important is having a place where you are storing (and can access) user data to make sure your or your sales and marketing team know who the users are and can understand the history (read: context) of their interactions. Having this user information will allow marketers to serve up content that builds confidence and encourages users to take the next priority action in the journey. Out of the gate, having this information in a central location is important and make sure that it is routinely being checked so that user data remains clean.
  • Device and Location Detectors: To put a visit into context, knowing how a user is getting to the site (i.e. device type) and from where (i.e. location) helps ensure the delivery of contextually relevant marketing. If a user is coming in via mobile, do we assume they are on-the-go? Is there a mobile or geo specific campaign code that gives us contextual clues about the user? This information will help marketers to deliver a unique and contextualized message based on device, location or other contextual clues.
  • User Journeys: You would be shocked by how many organizations are not aligned on what their user/customer journey looks like. Understanding the phases users go through is key to building a strategy for context marketing. First, you define your audience segments as their journeys will vary. From there, you can uncover insights on what triggers users to move from one phase to another, so you have confidence that when a user clicks on “x,” they are in journey phase “y.”
  • A Content Team and Plan: Content is a critical component that shouldn’t be overlooked, as it is one of the biggest blockers to context marketing and personalization. Having a well thought out and organized content creation plan (and a top notch content team) will ensure that as scenarios are being defined, there is a seamless work flow in place to deliver contextually relevant content.

The hardest part is getting started. Once you have all these in place you have a strong foundation to embark on your context marketing journey. Over time you can continue to iterate and measure against to grow and mature context marketing efforts.

Please login or register to add a comment.

Contribute Now!

Loving our articles? Do you have an insightful post that you want to shout about? Well, you've come to the right place! We are always looking for fresh Doughnuts to be a part of our community.

Popular Articles

See all
Digital Marketing Vs. Traditional Marketing: Which One Is Better?

Digital Marketing Vs. Traditional Marketing: Which One Is Better?

What's the difference between digital marketing and traditional marketing, and why does it matter? The answers may surprise you.

Julie Cave
Julie Cave 14 July 2016
Read more
4 Important Digital Marketing Channels You Should Know About

4 Important Digital Marketing Channels You Should Know About

It goes without saying that a company can't do without digital marketing in today's world.

Digital Doughnut Contributor
Digital Doughnut Contributor 5 November 2014
Read more
Are virtual reality and augmented reality the next step for CMS?

Are virtual reality and augmented reality the next step for CMS?

In a fitting conclusion to a year many hailed as the “year of virtual reality” (VR), in December 2016, WordPress made it possible for users to create and publish VR content on any WordPress site. The change meant that users could publish 360-degree photos on their sites, and regular photos and panoramas could be viewed in VR.

Leonie Mercedes
Leonie Mercedes 16 October 2017
Read more
Collection Of The Best Email Testing Tools Online

Collection Of The Best Email Testing Tools Online

Don’t be afraid of email testing. There are many free or freemium tools online that can help you with testing your SPAM score, deliverability and even the rendering of your email. We feature 30 email testing tools in this article. Check out the complete list!

Roland Pokornyik
Roland Pokornyik 31 October 2016
Read more
Smash your customer acquisition targets with these AB tests

Smash your customer acquisition targets with these AB tests

Don't second guess what will work best to drive new customer acquisition via referral. Plan a program of AB tests to maximise results and you could benefit from a 5-7x improvement in results!

Angela Southall
Angela Southall 17 October 2017
Read more