There are plenty of fish in the online sea. Today business decisions start with a Google search, and the rise of digital and content marketing has likely impacted or even disrupted your industry.
What is your brand doing to stand out, reach and serve your customers using web, social and mobile channels?
Align Your Content With Your Goals
If your business objectives include lead generation, building brand trust or building credibility as an expert in your niche, use white papers as part of your content marketing strategy.
White papers, also called special reports or industry reports, are authoritative, concise guides that help readers solve a problem or make a decision.
Unconvinced? Consider the evidence:
- LinkedIn states that industry insights are the most in-demand type of content, desired by 6 in 10 of its users.
- In a recent survey, 83% of respondents said white papers are moderately to extremely influential in their decisions.
3 Tips for a Brilliant White Paper
Use these tips to craft a valuable white paper that decision makers in your target market will enjoy and share:
1. Be relevant:
Share helpful information that solves your target’s most common or serious pain points. Grab your target’s attention by delivering useful insights and articulating how they lead to business benefits. White papers can generate leads by providing value-added content your target can’t find anywhere else.
2. Be objective:
White papers are not a sales brochure; they are primarily informative reports that educate your target with useful insights. Customers respond better to informative write-ups than blatant ads, so use credible sources to cite facts and figures. Add value with exclusive research, like an interview with a CEO in your target’s industry.
3. Be compelling:
Help your reader make a decision with a well-structured, persuasive business case. Concisely include the business problem, market trends, alternatives and your recommendation – which subtly guides your reader to your company’s offering at the end. Make the white paper readable with powerful images, captions and graphs.
Differentiate your company and build credibility as a thought leader using well-crafted white papers. Solve your target’s problems to create genuine interest in your services and help your company gain top-of-mind status.
Lisa Goller helps businesses tell their story. As a Toronto-based Strategic Freelance Writer & Editor, she helps executives and entrepreneurs stand out, look good and save time. Learn more at lisagoller.com
Contently, Content Marketing Institute, Decision News Media, Hubspot, LinkedIn