Need help before then? Email us for our recommended writers list!

Currently accepting inquiries for projects starting JULY 2024 →

Why Your Content Needs Context

7/25/23

Content Creation

Content marketers, biz owners, and basically everyone on the internet always says, “Content is king.” You need great, consistent content to engage your audience and sell your offers.

However, a king is nothing without its queen, right? That’s where context comes in.

What is “content?”

Well, this is a broad question. What is content, exactly?

Let’s put it this way: we currently have over 13 pages of published blog posts and almost 500 posts on Instagram. Almost all of which have to do with content, in some way or another. What it is, how to make it, and how to make it work for your biz.

Content is more than blog writing. It’s every single thing you send out into the world for your business. Your weekly newsletter, your videos and podcasts, ads, sales pages, testimonials, TikTok memes…all of it. That’s why it’s so important to have a solid plan for all of that content!

Because, when planned and executed well, content can:

What is “context?”

In the online biz marketing world, context forms the backdrop to your content. It’s how and when people see it. 

If your content is an actor giving a monologue onstage, your context is the set design. The lighting. What they’re wearing, how they’re speaking, even whether the audience is familiar with the story or not. Changes to any of these contextual factors can change how content is received.

More examples of context include:

  • Day or time of day
  • Busy or slow seasons
  • National, cultural, or religious holidays
  • The COVID-19 pandemic
  • The content creator
  • The content platform
  • Current events

See how all of these examples of context affect how your content might be received? Context can be as extensive as a global pandemic or as narrow and personal as who created the content.

And it’s important to be mindful of context because delivering the right content to the right people at the right time can make or break its impact.

How to use content and context together

Now that we know the difference between context and content, let’s talk about how you can use both harmoniously and successfully.

Understand your audience

Neither content nor context will work if you don’t know your audience

If you can’t answer questions like “What does my audience need” or “How does my product or service solve a problem for them” then you’ve gotta brush up on who you’re targeting. 

Creating content and sending it into the void without any thought as to who it’s for? That’s like yelling in public at no one. Who’s listening? Who do you want listening to you and why? 

Solve problems in the customer journey with context

Good content marketing makes your brand visible, brings your biz more quality leads, and builds your trustworthiness and authority. In other words, it’s valuable AF. But only when your content marketing strategy works! If your content marketing efforts aren’t paying off, look at the context.

For example, let’s say your email newsletters aren’t getting clicks. You’re pretty sure the content in your newsletters is relevant, helpful, and skimmable — so what’s the prob?

Check the context of your content. Test a couple of different subject lines for each email to see which are more enticing. Or, test sending them on different days, at different times of day. Or, figure out if you’re sending too many or too few newsletters overall! You might have to tweak your newsletter schedule.

Here’s another example. Potential customers are dropping out of your sales funnel at certain points. Dig into the context to see if you can remove any roadblocks or better anticipate their needs. Would a testimonial on this page convince them to buy? Would a case study better illustrate how your offer works? 

In short, use your context to support your content goals. And use it to troubleshoot your content strategy.

Personalize when you can

Remember that “actor on a stage” picture we painted for you earlier? Think about how many different plays exist in the world. Movies, TV shows, songs — there’s so much variety in these types of content because we all have unique preferences. (Except we can all agree that we love Pedro Pascal.)

This is why it’s so helpful to personalize your content when you can. 

Make the most out of your transactional emails — cart abandonment emails, product delivery emails, order confirmation emails — by sharing helpful resources or offering to answer questions.

And this isn’t so much “personalization” as “being a human,” but please make your content accessible. It should be scannable, easy to read for everyone, and descriptive. This is one contextual factor that’ll make a huge difference on your audience.

Tweak the context so that your content appeals to and serves different segments of your audience. It’s not hard, and it’s not too tough on your budget.

Context helps your content get seen by the right people at the right time

Working hard to brainstorm and produce amazing content isn’t enough to guarantee its success. You’ve gotta take your content one step further and ensure that the context for it is appropriate, too.

Aim to create content that’s personalized, accessible, relevant, and timely. That’s how you blend context marketing and content marketing well.

And hey, if you’ve got enough on your plate with your business, hand us the reins. We can help with content and context!

Jess Hammons, Uncanny Content Writer and Meme Enthusiast
join the Uncanny Content newsletter.