Producing a white paper is an expensive affair. Beginning with planning to writing to designing to production, it takes anywhere from $500 – $3,000 to produce a top class white paper that can generate targeted leads for a very long time.
A white paper has that potential. It is the duty of the sponsor of the white paper to bring out that potential. One key step is to maximize its reach is by promoting it far and wide. Use the following pointers to send out your white paper to unreachable, unthought of corners in the world. It will be a rewarding effort.
One key step is to maximize its reach is by promoting it far and wide. Use the following tactics to send out your white paper to unreachable, unthought of corners in the world. Many ideas are inexpensive; some will just need an investment of time. Overall, it will be a rewarding effort.
- Enewsletter: As soon as you produce your white paper plan to send out an email campaign. This will go out to your house list consisting of customers, prospects, partners, employees (sales staff, especially), associates, affiliates, vendors and others directly related to your business. Dedicate at least one email campaign to promote the white paper. In subsequent email campaigns, you can make this a secondary information piece.Simply grab the executive summary and provide a link to a landing page where they can download the white paper. Always use a landing page so that you can track the downloaders separately and take the conversation further.
- Blog: Many people learn about your business and offerings through search engines, so it’s naturally a good idea to blog about your white paper. In fact, you can break down the white paper into several topics and blog about it for several weeks / days. Again, include a link to the landing page at the end of your blog article.
- White paper syndication websites: There are hundreds of vertical white paper syndication websites that are both free and paid. Learn to use a few. This will give exposure to your white paper from people you aren’t even thinking about yet. Some of the most popular white paper syndication websites are:
- Send directly to prospects: There might be many people in your funnel who haven’t yet joined your email list. Send the white paper to those folks with a personalized note. Explain how this white paper helps them take a better decision.
- Use in sales meetings: White papers are a credible information source in sales meetings. Your sales associates will get an extra dose of confidence with enough supporting materials for their pitches and a white paper is a very good tool.
- Distribute via vendors and channel partners: who are mentioned in the white paper, on their newsletters and other marketing channels: As your partner, your vendors will be (or at least are expected to be) happy to give a shout out about your white paper to their email list and customers. Ask them if they can feature the white paper on their website. Whatever avenues you find make the most of them.
- Influencers: Find them on twitter: This one is used very rarely but can be one of the most effective ways of promoting your white paper. Use a tool like BuzzSumo, Ahrefs or Followerwonk to find people who frequently discuss your topic. Find their email address using Rapportive, LinkedIn or this article. Write a personal note to each of them telling about your white paper and requesting for a shout to their Twitter list if they find the arguments in the white paper credible.
- Share it on Twitter with relevant hashtags: Find popular tags in your industry using a tool like Hashtagify.me or Keyhole.co. Then tweet quotable sentences from your white paper with those hashtags. You are sure to turn a few heads with this tactic.
- Pinterest: Pinterest is a highly visual medium and a white paper is mostly a textual medium. So make an infographic of your white paper and post it on Pinterest. You should be able to find some good infographic artists online. If it’s much of a job, go ahead and simply link to your blog article – that probably includes an image – on Pinterest.
- People you’ve quoted on your white paper: Write a personalized note thanking the people who have lent their insights to your white paper. Request them to share the link to the landing page to their audience. If you have the budget, send them a nice gift like an Amazon gift card.
- PPC ads: If you have more budget, go ahead and set up a few PPC campaigns on LinkedIn and Facebook. Size up the audience first on Facebook. Do the same with LinkedIn and Google Adwords.
- Relevant LinkedIn groups: To those groups that are familiar with your work, post the summary of your white paper and a link to the white paper download page. Offer to answer any questions that they have on the topic.
- Quora: Quora is becoming a fountain of expert knowledge. Exactly the kind of place where you want to be. Find questions that are relevant to your topic, those that you deal extensively in your white paper. Post extracts from your white paper while linking to the landing page of the white paper.
- Write a press release: An attention-grabbing press release will take your white paper to journalists who are hungry for your content. Multiply its effectiveness by syndicating to multiple orders release outlets.
- Send it to journalists covering your topic: Have access to journalists who cover your topic? Send it to them without further thoughts.
- Hand it out at trade shows: Well-written white papers are not a common thing to be seen; the chance is very slim to none that all of your competitors have invested in creating quality white papers. When you distribute white papers – not brochures or flyers – at trade shows you immediately stand out as an expert in the marketplace.
- Via a landing page on your website: Ideally, you will have a landing page for each of your white paper. In this page, you will outline the major points of the white paper, tell how it will benefit the reader and invite them to request a copy of it by sharing their contact info. The contact info then gets added to your leads database.
- On your website homepage: Your own website is a great place to promote your white paper. It’s where most of your online traffic arrives . Feature it on the top using a Hello bar type opt-in or on the sidebar.
- Share it with sales force: A white paper is a tool that helps your customers take better buying decisions. It is your sales force that is in close touch with your customers. So tell about your latest white paper to your salespeople and ask them to share it freely with customers. It will help them land more profitable, educated leads sooner.
- Bloggers: There are a number of bloggers who write in your market. You can find them easily with a simple google search. Make a list of at least 20 people and write out personalized notes requesting them to share about your white paper to their readership. Drive this traffic to your landing page.
- Email signature line: This one is easy to do. Simply add the landing page link to your email signature section. Use this signature from the time of launch to a few weeks. Many people will take notice of it and learn about your valuable white paper.
- Guest post on relevant blogs: In addition to reaching out to bloggers, you can also offer to do a short guest post on blogs that have a large readership. Pitch them a story that their readers will find valuable and lead it to your white paper.
- Get it written about in relevant trade magazines: There are several offline and online trade magazines for your industry. Ask them if they accept contributed articles. They might charge a fee for this. If the readership is huge, it will be worth paying a few hundred dollars to promote your white paper. Choose a couple of better options and write a short article enumerating the key points in the white paper and directly link the landing page of the white paper at the end of the article.
- Advertise in trade magazines: You can also simply buy an ad space in a trade magazine to promote the white paper.
- YouTube: YouTube is very powerful in generating direct traffic to your website. Because there will be very few videos related to your white paper topic, if you create one it will be relatively easy to rank for target keywords. That’s what you should aim to do. Create a short 2-4 minute video outlining the key arguments in your white paper. You can use a slide presentation to support your voice over if you think creating a live video or a graphically rich video is not your cup of tea.
I hope the above tactics add plenty of power to your white paper marketing. Pick three to five tactics and try them out. Let us know in the comments how you make use of them.