Would whitepapers help my business?
Whitepapers are becoming an increasingly common part of many organisations' company literature, helping to identify them as thought leaders in their industry.
However, whitepapers may not suit every content marketing strategy, so here's our guide to seeing whether they should be added to your list of desired copy.
What is a whitepaper?
Whitepapers can come in different forms, but generally speaking they are research-heavy documents sometimes spanning dozens of pages.
They not only discuss and dissect common issues facing an industry, they offer a solution to these problems – usually a solution that is provided by the company writing the whitepaper!
Whether your business is looking for a mammoth 50-page tome or a quick four-page summary to pass onto prospective clients, whitepapers ensure you come across as well informed in your chosen industry.
Are they suitable for my business?
Whitepapers can be an extremely useful tool for boosting your brand as a thought leader – offering fresh content and a veiled plug for your services and products.
However, due to their length and research driven nature, they won't fit every company's set-up.
For example, if you are a business-to-consumer company, you are less likely to find whitepapers the best way of enticing customers to your store!
Let's face it, the general public aren't going to sift through pages and pages of research about common industry problems; they are much more likely to be attracted by social media posts, blogs or standard marketing tools.
Quick, sharp and targeted communications are normally much more effective in attracting consumers, whether this is through TV, radio or website offers.
But if you are a business-to-business (B2B) service provider, whitepapers can provide an excellent way of expanding your networks, encouraging prospective clients to get in touch and showing thought leadership.
This is because fully researched and well-written whitepapers are more likely to be read by business executives than regular consumers, particularly if you can isolate a specific problem they might be having in their operations.
Whether it's IT solutions, marketing guidance, training opportunities or a wide range of B2B offerings – whitepapers give you the chance to show off your knowledge of the industry and draw in new clients and build a good brand reputation.
We've already covered some of the obvious benefits of whitepapers, such as thought leadership and brand building, but these are just the tip of the iceberg.
Whitepapers can be used in a number of other ways to boost your business's content marketing strategy.
Lead generation/data capture: Whitepapers are usually available from your company website as a downloadable file.
By restricting access on the file, you can request personal information from people who want to download, including name, email address and telephone number.
These can be passed onto your sales team to pursue, safe in the knowledge that whoever downloaded the file already has an interest in the subject discussed.
Reviving old content and boosting page visits: Whitepapers can be populated with links to past blogs, landing pages and product pages.
This not only gives a boost to your website visits, you can link to past and present campaigns to achieve a more integrated content marketing approach.
Sharing and social media: As downloadable documents, they can be shared between colleagues via email or social media platforms, bringing your services to the attention of people who may otherwise not come across them.
Make sure whitepapers are available in your Facebook campaigns and also provide links through Twitter to gain maximum exposure.
If you would like to add whitepapers to your portfolio of unique content, or need help with your content marketing strategy, please contact Castleford Media today.
Posted by Francis Finch