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Using White Papers as a Marketing Tool (Part 4 of 8)

Posted by Ellen McKewen

website-content-whitepapers-for-manufacturersNote: this entry is part of a series about using marketing to generate leads and enhance brand awareness. Read Part 1, 2 and 3 of this series under Sales & Marketing topic. 

website-content-whitepapers-for-manufacturersWe all want to find a way to differentiate ourselves from the competition. In today’s competitive global economy, we can’t just claim to be the best…even if it’s true. We have to prove that we’re the most knowledgeable in our fields. A great way to do this is by publishing white papers. We discussed white papers as part of valuable website content in our previous blog entry.

You have probably downloaded a white paper off of the Internet, but if you are unsure:

“A white paper is an authoritative report or guide helping readers to understand an issue, solve a problem, or make a decision.” – Wikipedia

White papers can convey important industry information, release the results of a study or research or serve as a “How To Guide” on a particular content. White Papers help you strategically:

  1. Generate Leads – On your website, place your white paper on a page where visitors have to fill out a form to download your information. This will help you separate website visitors from people who are genuinely interested in your information. This will also provide you critical insight into the topics important to your website visitors.
  2. Build Credibility – White papers can help you demonstrate industry expertise, establishing an important trust factor. Many CA manufacturers have competitors who provide similar products or services at similar pricing. Having the extra credibility factor could be the determining factor!

If you are interested in starting your own white papers, here are some tips:

  • Research What’s Out There: What type of content is already published in your field? What’s something new you can provide?
  • Write, Write, Write!: White papers can take a long time, so you have to dedicate resources. First, outline your thoughts and the goals of your white paper. Then, look up stats and information. Make sure that you cite all of your sources.
  • Actively Promote:  Spread your white paper throughout all of your marketing channels  including your website, newsletter, social media sites and press releases.
  • Analyze: Did people download your white paper? Did it boost website traffic? Did anybody who downloaded your white paper convert into a sale? Evaluate the success of your white paper and adjust your strategy accordingly.

If you haven’t tried publishing white papers yet, consider using them as a marketing tool to generate new leads!

In Part 5 of the series, we’ll discuss Search Engine Optimization. Until next time!

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