The Newbie Guide to White Papers

February 25, 2019
seo white paper marketing

Due to the technological advancements in the turn of the 21st century, it is not up for argument that the bulk of marketing activities goes into online means. With increasing importance being given to the Internet in purchases decision-making, if you don’t step up your online A-game, the results will be undesirable.

Owing to the fact that there is an uncountable method to promote business through the web, it would do you a world of good to be well versed in different methods.

One method to reel in potential business is an element known as a white paper. You’re likely to have come across it, albeit incomprehensively as the real meanings and uses of them. Just in case that applies to you, I’ve concocted this short newbie guide.


There are variations as to exactly what a white paper is. Majority will just use it in contexts they see others use it, nothing more. What does a white paper mean exactly?

From a personal point of view, a white paper is a write up with real facts and figures of an organization, while it remains a promotional document. Alternatively, it is a piece that gives an insight into your organization, which boosts your business. Sometimes real, sometimes made up, it is all for the reader to take a course of activity you want.

The features of a good white paper are:

  • Provides real research and statistics.

  • Offers useful information to the user.

  • Is tailored towards influencing the reader.

  • Is also interesting to read.

Apart from these, there are no holds barred in the writing of a white paper. You have the liberty of arbitrariness and spontaneity in your write up.

Uses of a white paper.

  • Papers used to get email addresses – It is not compulsory you’re trying to get a customer to make a purchase, but to provide their details and sign up for later marketing schemes, like mail outs, and newsletters. It could be very convincing towards getting an interested customer to sign up for newsletters. They practically trade their details for the useful information in a white paper.

  • Papers for purchases – This is basically to implore your customers to buy your products. The white paper outlines the normal, or everyday problem, the way you have chosen to solve it, and testimonies. You conclude with a subtle plea, with the mind-set that they’ll be interested in the product, and contact you.

  • Background information papers – This is a paper basically giving more information about the details of the company and its activities. It might be when a person is putting your products into consideration and is in need of more clarification as regards your company. This is usually towards the rear of the trading cycle, but can appear at any point.

Composition of a White Paper.

Any time you want to write a white paper, here are some vital things you’d best include:

Stats – Research numbers and figures to back up your claims, and propositions. A claim without statistics will be less believable.

Infographics – Infographics are aesthetically appealing, and facilitates assimilation on the facts.

Intro – Ensure you start your work with an executive summary as it is sometimes called, which hands an insight into what it is the reader is holding.

At The Onset

If you’re ready to write a white paper, map out your structure before the writing proper. Ask a few questions:

  1. Who are the people the write up is directed to, and what are their interests?

  2. What does the paper seek to achieve?

  3. At what point of the sales cycle will this paper be issued?

A properly constructed white paper can win you your next customer. Do it passionately.