Small Business News: The White Paper Overview

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Pundits still say they are a great way to develop credibility for your business easy to distribute in their popular current PDF format and also, if done right, a marketing effort for your business attracting future sales leads, clients and customers. But in the shadow of new online marketing tools like blogs and social media, how important are white papers really these days and what can they still do for your small business? 

Trends

How interactive is your white paper strategy. If you think business white papers are old fashioned and out of step with modern small business realities…well, maybe you’re doing them wrong. According to Tom Pisello, if we look at white papers broadly as vendor provided information on products and services they still represent a hugely effective way of influencing purchasing decisions. The question then, is not do white papers still work but are your white pages engaging customers. The ROI Guy

How safe are the white papers you are downloading? Though they may be a great source of information about products and services and a powerful marketing tool for small businesses everywhere, there’s a new cause for alarm with the popular white paper format on the Internet today. A victim of its own success, the dominant PDF format has also become a popular tool for hackers intent on spreading malware collecting stealing personal and launching network viruses. White Paper Pundit 

Tips

Small business white paper marketing basics. Usually 4-10 pages in length and created in PDF format, white papers have an incredibly wide range of possible uses. But deciding on your objective when creating one of these documents to market your business, product or service is important to get the most out of this potentially valuable format. Business.gov 

10 tips for excellent white paper marketing. ”When done right, nothing pulls in qualified sales leads like a well-targeted offer for a juicy white paper. Offers for white papers and Webinars make up the bulk of ads in Web Digest For Marketers and the solo emails sent once a week to subscribers,” writes Larry Chase, whose watched effective white paper marketing for over a decade now. Here are Larry’s tips for success. Search Engine for Marketers

Do your white papers generate leads? Hey, let’s face it. Like any other small business tool, if the white papers you create for download and distribution don’t convert at all to people contacting you about your product or service, it’s all been in vain. Of course, you are building your credibility all the while but that may be for sales years down the road. What about business now? Here are some basics for creating a white paper that generates leads. HubSpot Blog

Innovation

How to reengineer the white paper. Bob Buday and Tim Parker describe white papers as “a key piece of the thought leadership marketing mix.” They’ve created a new micro site with additional links going deep on the topic of how to reboot white papers for their ongoing role on a changing business and technology landscape. See the links on creating content and enticing readers and also check out Parker’s introductory video telling with more on what it’s all about. The Bloom Group 

Are you using the “new” white paper? After years of effectiveness the white paper remains king, especially when it comes to converting prospects to clients and buyers in the B2B software industry. Still, it’s not quite the same white paper as it turns out: shorter, tighter, more engaging and inspiring. If you’re not using this new white paper, here are some points aimed at giving you old white paper format a rehab. Highly Competitive

Data

White papers are still important to customers, a survey finds. Here’s another reason not to abandon your white paper campaign if you already have one or to start one if you don’t. In fact, the survey by Eccolo Media suggests 83 percent of respondents found white papers “moderately to extremely influential” when making a decision to purchase a product or service. Can your business afford to be without this edge? Marketscan

Want to know more about the online importance of white papers to small business? Download the full-length 2010 B2B Technology Collateral Survey Report including information on the incredibly influential role white papers continue to play and the huge importance customers and clients, particularly in B2B business relationships, place on the information they find there. Download the complete report at the link above. Eccolo Media

Question

Do white papers really have a future? Despite all the enthusiasm displayed outwardly for the white papers as a medium to spread information and build credibility for your business and brand, are they slowly being overtaken by newer and more popular technology? What does it say about the future of white pages if one of the leading proponents of the medium spends most of his time promoting social media instead, like the above event held this past summer? Writing White Papers

3 Comments ▼

3 Reactions

  1. Hi small biz trends,

    Found your site through Michael Stelzner e-mail w/a link to your site.

    This is great advice which I will attempt to print and study … since I’m trying to establish credibility as a copywriter.

    It’s a great update for my white paper lessons.

    Your website is easy to navigate and you have wonderful information on it.

    Thank you,

    Patricia

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