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By Joshua Snape, | 3/26/2018 9:06 AM

White papers are a trusted source of content that offers your online readers a well-researched report that gives an authoritative solution to their particular business problem.

White papers are also a lead generation tool. The reader gets to download the valuable information contained in your white paper in exchange for their email address and/or other business information.

6 Tips to Using Downloadable White Papers to Attract Traffic and Bring You More Customers

Before we get to those tips let’s be clear, a white paper is more academic than your average piece of marketing content. White Papers are professional documents packed full of useful information, industry data, and statistics. Readers have high expectations of a white paper which can sometimes take several weeks or months of research, preparation, and writing.

Your readers will expect your white paper to be more laborious than a blog article or even an eBook and generally, they will understand that it may need to be read several times in order to extract all the key information.

For this reason, white papers are a great marketing tool for you because they generate quality leads. People who are ready to put the effort into reading a white paper are doing so because they, or the company that they work for, are further along in the buying cycle than your average subscriber.

– Design, Formatting & Colouring

Your white paper should be visually appealing, coherent, and logical. For those reasons, you may need to enlist a graphic designer. Take for example the following piece from Venngage:

By using bright colours this sample company creates a hierarchy of information. This is key in creating a flow that is obvious for readers to understand and follow.

Also note that instead of keeping things too text-heavy they break up the information and stats into small graphics and call-outs. This makes it easier to read and process what could otherwise be an overwhelming report.

– Editing and Grammar

Carefully proofread your white paper content! Poor spelling and grammar can and will tarnish any information no matter how valuable. On the other hand, meticulous spelling and grammar will underline the professionalism of your message and enhance your company’s credibility.

– Persuade and Educate

Your reader expects you to educate them on the topic and you also want to persuade them to believe that your product/service can solve the problem at hand.

Remember the bottom line, they are not interested in your product itself or its features and specifications, but rather how your product will provide the solution to their problem.

Traditionally the rule of white paper content is that 80% should be about educating the reader and 20% should be about your product. However, the main thing is that your white paper must not come across as merely an excuse to sell your product. Beware of going too far with the sales pitch, on the other hand, with good copywriting you will be able to weave throughout your content the idea that your product or service is an important and vital part of the overall solution to your reader’s business problem.

– Set up a Specific Landing Page

Setting up a simple landing page that is focused on your white paper is highly recommended. This means that any time you announce the availability of your white paper in your content you can direct traffic to a separate landing page that will focus on ensuring that your reader follows through on downloading the paper and leaving his/her email and contact information.

The singular aim of that landing page is to convince your reader of the benefits of downloading the white paper and reading it; that the information will be worth sharing their contact information.

Align with Your Overall Content Strategy

Your white paper should meet at least some, if not all, of the following marketing best practices:

  • Help establish you as a thought leader in an area that aligns with your area of industry expertise
  • Address the pain points of your target audience
  • Align with a popular Google search term

– Maximize ROI of Your White Paper 

Having invested in the creation of your white paper you now need to invest in promotion. All of the components mentioned above will drive traffic to your white paper, but you want to be sure you take all steps to maximize your ROI.

Be sure you work with your internal and external marketing teams to utilize all available promotional channels – this includes social media, newsletters, email programs and search engine marketing.

The contents of the white paper should be broken down into smaller assets such as webinars, infographics, blog posts, bylines, tweets, and other shareable content. All of these can then be used in your ongoing digital and social media marketing strategy to increase follow-through to the white paper.

If you appreciated these tips, tactics, and strategies and you would like help putting them into action contact us at Strategis Consulting!

Josh SnapeJoshua is an accomplished writer, blogger and marketing consultant. His successful track record includes sales and marketing across four continents—Europe, N. America, the Middle East and Africa. Josh is also a successful entrepreneur and established his own marketing consultancy in Cyprus, which serviced clients throughout the Middle East.  He now enjoys living and working in Vancouver for part of the year, and spends the rest of his time in the Turkish Riviera working remotely to assist clients communicate effectively in a wired world.  Connect with Josh at: