Enablement and educational tools are your sales team bread and butter. White papers are another example of a powerful tool in the sales and marketing toolkit. When used to their full potential, white papers can make your business more credible and help move prospects through the sales funnel to convince them your organisation is the solution to their problem.
What is a White Paper?
A white paper is an authoritative report or guide, whose main purpose is to help readers understand an issue, solve a problem or make a decision. The overall tone should be informative and educational.
In our specialist industries (technology, manufacturing and engineering), our customers often have complex products or solutions to offer. Therefore, these types of educational tools are important to removing barriers to sale. A tailored white paper aimed at the appropriate stakeholder can informatively explain the product/solution and the problems they overcome.
What Makes a Good White Paper?
Informative & Meaningful – The main purpose of a white paper is to provide solutions for readers problems. Consequently, your report needs to be informative complete with in-depth research. This shows your organisation is credible and abreast of the latest industry and technology trends.
Attracting & Engaging the Right Audience – Keep your reader engaged by talking their language and showing that you understand their problems and pain points. A white paper will only be successful if you write for the audience you want to attract – tailor white papers for the stakeholder you wish to attract (strategic, technical and user).
A Powerful Title & Topic – Choose a topic that is relevant and will provide the information your prospects can use. Ask yourself the questions you would usually ask prospects when thinking of a topic, such as ‘what are your pain points and problems?’. Once you have chosen your topic, think of a powerful title that will entice prospects to click through. Make it interesting and engaging to generate a buzz.
Educational not Promotional – First and foremost, your white paper should be an educational tool. It needs to explain an issue or solve a problem; therefore, your tone needs to stay educational and not promotional. Business opportunities will be created through informing and educating the prospect.
Clear Design – White papers unsurprisingly contain in-depth text, so the layout needs to be clear and concise with subtle branding and organised headers and sub-headers to keep the reader engaged.
Visually Informative – To help readers grasp content effectively, your white paper could contain technically based infographics that summarise or consolidate text content. All graphics should be informative illustrations – avoid using images best suited for a brochure, for example.
What are the Business Benefits of White Papers?
White papers can help convince your prospects to consider your organisation as the best solution, moving them through the sales funnel. White papers can also provide:
Customer trust and technical assurance
Remove barriers to close a deal
Position you as a thought-leader
Be a tempting download – a good lead-generation tool
Aid the selling process by informing and educating the prospect
Differentiates your solution from competitors
Are you looking to enhance your enablement and educational tools? Motion Marketing can help with creating informative and meaningful content that will aid the sales process and maximise their full potential. Contact us to learn more.