A white paper is a comprehensive, authoritative, and in-depth document that provides valuable information, insights, and solutions about a specific topic and the problems that surround it. In marketing, a white paper is a long-form piece of content, similar to an eBook.
What is the purpose of a white paper in marketing?
White papers are a content marketing tool to educate and inform a target audience, establish thought leadership, and generate leads. When done right, white papers are a powerful tool for content marketers, as they can educate readers and help them understand and solve an issue.
Plus, white papers position your company as a thought leader and authority on a subject by presenting valuable and persuasive research findings and information about your products and services.
Looking for inspiration? Check out our examples of engaging white papers.
How do you write a white paper for marketing?
- Pick a topic
When choosing the right topic, ensure it’s something your audience is interested in and that you are qualified to write about. Bonus points if it fills a "content gap."
- Define your audience
Moving beyond your audience's interests, think about the kinds of people who will be reading your white paper. How familiar are they with the topic you’ve chosen? Experts, novices, or somewhere in between?
- Capture attention with your introduction
Your introduction should captivate your audience, pique their interest, and encourage them to read further. If you don’t hook them with your intro, they’re not likely to finish reading your white paper.
- Infuse it with value
As mentioned before, white papers are comprehensive, authoritative, and in-depth documents that provide valuable information, insights, and solutions. Make sure you have valuable insights or research to share with your audience.
- Keep them interested
The days of sending people 30-page-PDF whitepapers are long gone. People just don’t consume content like that anymore. Opt for a format that transforms your white paper into a stunning interactive experience.
Read more about white papers: The 2023 Ultimate Guide: How to Write and Format a White Paper