RAAK_Blog-Header_Statistics how to look beyond the basics

Why context marketing is the next big thing in email marketing

“If content is king, context is queen”. It's not just about what you are saying. When you are saying it, and exactly which words you're using are crucial as well.Makes sense, doesn't it? Imagine you have to get your message across to two people. You know one person's age, gender and interests, … and the other one is a complete stranger. Obviously, your approach will be different. The person whose details you know, will get a more personalized experience as you would adapt your content to the context.

Content marketing is an absolute must in any email/digital marketing strategy. The reason is simple: new technologies allow us to create, spread and share content at an immensely rapid pace. Not only publishers, but brands and consumers as well, are now part of a content eco-system. So getting your content strategy right is the first crucial step. Tips to take this one with success? Read one of our previous blog posts: 5 ways to set up a perfect email marketing content plan.

But what has context got to do with this? 

Well, context is the mash-up of a lot of known elements: CRM, personalization, segmentation, customer lifecycle management, … It's about tailoring that piece of content according to the profile of your consumers. By using the right techniques, you can create a relevant context for your consumer, and thus offer him/her a more personal experience. 

All seems a bit fuzzy? Below you'll find 5 practical tips to use email marketing to create the right context for your consumers.

1) Dynamic forms

A good start for a good context is the right data. Make sure your webforms help you identify your consumer. F.i. link their website behavior to their filled-in data. Did they just sign up for a whitepaper or did they have a look at specific services and cases as well. 

Want to crank it up a notch? Make your forms adaptive according to their page behavior, so you can immediately ask them the right questions.

2) Reporting and tracking

When communicating with your contacts, start measuring all opens, clicks, interactions,… and link those results to their profile in a CRM program. By using this data you can create the right context between brand and consumers. Too much (big) data? Read our post on how to tackle this issue. 

3) Social media

Social is the best way to create relevant context. Simply because it's a one to one conversation between two individuals. It's probably the best way to really discover your consumers' needs and interests. Just tap into some social CRM resources to get you going on this one.

4) Lifecycle based content

Got all the data? Start dividing your content in clear categories and make your email content conditionally personalized. This way, the right piece of content will always be displayed on your consumers' screen.

5) Pre-defined flows

Another great tip is to set up pre-defined flows. This way you can set up a complete email marketing campaign and according to the interaction with the email, the right email is sent at exactly the right time.


Content and context go hand in hand. Focus on delivering top content (‘good' is not good enough) and start learning who your consumer really is. Don't let this approach scare you off, because a lot of things you will probably have implemented already. Getting content and context aligned is all about adding new techniques and finetuning your existing approach.
Posted on
May 14, 2013