White Paper Education vs. White Paper Selling Have you seen any of the commercials for the Dyson vacuum cleaner? In these segments, founder James Dyson demonstrates the unique properties of their Root Cyclone technology and why it is a better path to a cleaner carpet. So in these commercials, is James Dyson educating you or selling you a vacuum cleaner? The correct answer is BOTH. In my opinion, it is possible to use a white paper to both educate a reader while explaining how a branded solution solves a specific business problem. This is the primary approach employed in the modern business white paper that has unfortunately been deemed a “sales” message. But for many marketing professionals, associating the words “selling” and “white paper” in the same sentence is akin to openly belching at a Malibu cocktail party. Their alternative approach is to use a high-level, generic description of a solution without mentioning it by name. The answer to this conundrum lies with the accurate and orderly flow of information. 1. 2. 3.
Reinventing Print Media Among its other effects, the global recession of 2008–09 is catalyzing a permanent change in the media landscape. After years of gradual audience erosion, the pressure on newspapers and magazines has accelerated. Severe cutbacks in conventional advertising — even when subscriptions or newsstand sales are robust — are slicing deeply into publishers’ revenues and shredding profitability. And it has affected print more than any other medium: Although overall advertising revenues fell by mid-single digits in 2008, newspapers, consumer magazines, and business-to-business trade publications saw print advertising declines of two to three times that. Print players have faced other cyclical downturns in which their businesses declined faster than other ad- supported media. The first force is the ongoing shift in where marketers focus their spending. The second long-term trend devastating print profitability is the rise of digital media.
Free Business, Computer, Engineering and Trade Magazine Subscrip New York Times Forces Apple to Pull Popular ‘Pulse’ iPad Newsreader | Epicenter Apple has pulled the best-selling iPad RSS application, Pulse, from the App Store at the request of The New York Times. Why? Because it downloads and displays The New York Times RSS feed, just like every other RSS reader on the planet. Pulse has been an app-store hit thanks to its slick design, which pulls news from various sources and aggregates them in an easy-to-read manner, perfectly suited to the flick-and-scroll interface of the iPad. The design was good enough to impress even Steve Jobs, who mentioned it in his WWDC keynote speech Monday. The application, which costs $4, has been downloaded 35,000 times. Pulse was removed from the App Store yesterday after a takedown request was sent by The New York Times‘ legal counsel. UPDATE: Tuesday 3:00 pm Pacific: Pulse is back in the App store, though it’s unclear whether the Times retracted its objection or if Apple simply decided to ignore it. Here is the relevant excerpt: Clearly the Times doesn’t understand the purpose of RSS. See Also:
Case Study: “Old-School” Marketing Gets Results Many white paper marketers swear by the latest online marketing methods. They think an eye-catching online ad or a persuasive email captures customers best. A successful marketing firm, however, has learned that an “old-school” method can do the job better. MarketSense (www.market-sense.com), a 20-year-old business-to-business marketing agency based in Burr Ridge, Illinois, specializes in generating qualified sales leads for its clients. The full-service firm gets impressive results with precisely targeted direct mail. Hit the Target Clark Jones, director of business development at MarketSense, explains, “Over the years, we’ve done email ‘blasts’ and online ads offering white papers to prospects within in our own databases as well as those from rented or purchased databases, but the results often fell short of our target. “We realized that when you run banners and other display ads on the Internet, you typically have very little control over who is clicking on your ads.
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Using Facebook for Business Networking By now you’ve heard about Facebook, the ultra-popular social networking site that boasts 150 million members. But did you know it’s also a very powerful business networking site? You can connect with legions of people in any industry organized by city, workplace, school and region. Facebook users create their own profiles that feature photos and personal background, they exchange public or private messages and they join groups that share their interests. Using the site to spread the word about your business can pay off. According to a recent study by Aberdeen Group, top companies are using social-networking sites like Facebook to achieve improved interaction with customers. Facebook expert Mari Smith, known as “The Pied Piper of Facebook,” teaches courses on using the service for profit. Create a Strategy Mari says there’s an essential rule of thumb when using Facebook: “The number-one reason that people flounder in social networking is that they don’t have a strategy.
Using Blogs to Promote Your White Papers You can use a blog to trumpet your opinions, write reviews of events and keep a personal—and very public—diary. Blogs can also tell readers about your latest, greatest white paper—if you know how to do it right. Want a tip? Whet your readers’ appetites. “A blog can be used to build anticipation,” says Denise Wakeman, an online marketing advisor who specializes in business blogging and is founder of the Biz Tips Blog. Eye Appeal A blog is all about writing, right? When your well-crafted white paper is published, Denise advises, tell the world about it on your blog. It’s a mistake to assume that readers know how to download your paper. Give Value Denise says that because blogging is a personal form of communication, many bloggers tend to provide fluff. And one last tip: Don’t view your blogging marketing effort as a one-shot deal. So capture your readers’ interest by blogging about your white paper before it’s published.
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