Contextual Marketing 101: A Real-World Example

Contextual Marketing Examples

Marketers have a love-hate relationship with buzzwords. Mostly hate. If you’ve seen the phrase “contextual marketing” floating around lately, you might have even dismissed it as just another buzzword that will fade into obscurity. But contextual marketing is more about philosophy than terminology.

Basically, if you’re creating marketing that doesn’t annoy your customers, provides them with something useful, and enhances their experience, that’s contextual marketing.

Simply by acknowledging a customer’s context, you can create marketing that customers actually want to see. Case in point: in New York this morning, it was unseasonably cold. Think Coffee wrote a weather-targeted, contextual message on the chalkboard.

Or, in other words, they said it was cold. And then provided a call-to-action:

Contextual Marketing 101 Example

Was Think Coffee thinking about contextual marketing when they wrote this?

No, they were thinking about their customers and how they could solve a customer’s problem. This is how contextual marketing boils down to a philosophy instead of a buzzword: businesses are already using context to help sell products. They just haven’t developed a comprehensive strategy for it.

With contextual marketing technology, companies can take the contextually relevant message on this chalkboard and apply it to digital channels. Dynamic emails that change in real-time according to weather, location, and other contextual data can mimic this chalkboard experience at a massive scale – personalizing the experience for every recipient and making sure that the content is always relevant.

Whether it’s cold and you’re selling coffee or you’re making sure customers only get emailed about sports apparel related to the teams they support, contextual marketing creates messages around what’s already on customers minds and improves that experience in the moment.

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The Inkredible 5 Winter 2015

Want to see how brands like Yahoo, Hyatt, and others are using context in emails? Check out The Inkredible Five: Winter 2015.