A context developer has something different in mind from a content developer. This different frame of reference sees the customers (learners, students, subscribers, trainees, audience, enrollment) differently and starts from a different premise. Here are some ways that a context developer differs from less effective content developers.
- Content developers think about what they do and how good the product is. Context developers dwell on what the customers do with the product and how the process is good for them.
- Content developers act like inventors who fail to penetrate their market with their "better mousetrap". Context developers are like inventors "with a hit on their hands" who gave customers a way out of their dilemma, freedom from an adversity or a change in their routine.
- Content developers think like media buyers who cannot respect the customers or seek their permission to deliver information. Context developers think like consultants who help the customer get past "what they are buying" to consider "why buy it?", "how to use it?", "what it compares to?" and "how much it will cost in the long run?".
- Content developers act like hostile negotiators who take a positional stance, intimidate the opposition and create a legacy of resentment for future dealings. Context developers de-escalate the adversarial context, establish common ground, and explore the customer's secondary objectives.
- Content developers speak like propagandists who seek conformity and silence dissent. Context developers speak like advocates who open up community membership, validate diversity of outlooks and welcome dissenting viewpoints.
- Content developers spin the features and package their deal to get impulse purchases. Context developers nurture the conversations and pose the questions to get loyalty, buzz and further explorations.
- Content developers sour the deal with requirements, restrictions and penalties. Context developers sweeten the deal with respect, choices and guarantees.
- Content developers give the customers finished products. Context developers give the customers pictures of different uses, processes to reach a good decision and protection from potential pitfalls.