We write a lot of content for our clients. Whether it’s as simple as a blog post, or more in-depth pieces like eBooks or whitepapers, the same question always comes up after we deliver the final product.
“What do we do now?”
Here are 8 tips, tricks, and strategies for marketing and promoting your whitepaper to gather more leads:
#1 Develop an awesome landing page & A/B test the crap out of it
The landing page is arguably the most important piece of the puzzle when it comes to marketing your content. An engaging landing page explains why visitors should giveyou their contact information and provides a clear vision of the extraordinary value they can anticipate to get from your content.Why should they give you their personal information? Will this whitepaper solve a problem for them or help them make a decision they have been struggling with? Outline that clearly for the reader. If you’re using a marketing tool like HubSpot, Marketo, or Pardot, conduct A/B split tests on your landing page to determine which factors improve your download rate.
#2 Promote your whitepapers on LinkedIn
If you’re not posting content to LinkedIn, it’s time that you embrace all of the opportunities that LinkedIn has to offer. Think about your target audience and identify groups, they might be a part of in LinkedIn. For our telecom clients, we suggest groups like CIO Network, CIO Forum, and Telecom Professionals to name just a few. Posting your content to LinkedIn Groups not only gets your whitepaper in front of your target audience, but it also provides a great way for others to share your content with colleagues and others in their networks. Just be sure not to come across as a self-promoter. Remember, your content is there to help solve your audience’s problem. Rather than spend the time talking about you or your business, talk about how the whitepaper will help them and why they should take the time to download and read it. LinkedIn Ads are also a viable way to promote your content, if you are willing to allocate the spend.
#3 Leverage content syndication services
Syndication sites like Tech Republic, Tech Target, FierceMarkets, and Find White Papers offer both free and pay-per-lead packages to help you promote your content to their lists and members. Just be sure to do your research before selecting a content syndication service and confirm that your content will get in front of the right target audience. If you’re going to make the investment into syndication services, you want to make sure you’re not paying for bad leads.
#4 Tell your story on Twitter
As of November 2016, there are approximately 6,000 tweets per second on Twitter. With all those tweets going out to people’s feeds, one little tweet about your whitepaper likely won’t make a big impact on your followers. Rather than a one-and-done approach to Twitter, create a schedule of posts for your content and develop a series of tweets that gives more information than just the whitepaper’s title. Get creative. Identify the problem it solves. Post research data or statistics included in the content. Tweet quoted content that readers might want to learn more about. You can even number the tweets or create a hashtag so your readers will know they are a part of a series. Mix it up a little with graphics and gifs if that make sense for your brand. The possibilities are endless in the Twittersphere!
#5 Send to industry associations & conferences
Just about every industry has an association with an annual conference and a ton of members. Chances are, these associations are looking for thought-leadership content they can distribute to members as a value-add. Do some digging and see if there is an opportunity to partner with these associations to get your content in front of their members. Virtually every industry has a major annual conference with thousands of participants. There is a pretty good chance they will be happy to help you promote your content on their site, newsletter, and email blasts. You can also look to these associations to help conduct research in your industry for future whitepapers, research papers, and industry reports.
#6 Promote to your existing newsletter & email lists
While the purpose of your whitepaper is to generate leads, it can also be used to re-engage with leads that have gone cold or haven’t heard from you in a while. Consider sending your content to this list to reconnect with them and spark up a previous conversation that may have fallen by the wayside before. While this doesn’t necessarily generate net new leads, it goes a long way in determining which leads in your CRM are still interested in the information your company has to offer. But you don’t have to stop there. Sending your whitepaper to existing customers and newsletter subscribers provides an opportunity to discuss complementary products or services that they may not know you offer. For example, if you have a customer that purchased Hosted PBX services from you, a whitepaper on video conferencing or CRM application integration just might pique their interest and start a conversation around a different product set. If possible, segment your lists so you are sending the content out to appropriate lists.
#7 Create a teaser presentation for Slideshare
Slideshare, which is now owned by LinkedIn, is a great place to promote whitepapers with a quick teaser presentation. Create a slide deck version of your whitepaper that gives some top highlights as well as teasers as to what additional info is included in the downloaded version of the content. Be sure not to give too much information away here, as the ultimate goal is to incentivise the viewers to download your content from the landing page.
#8 Create a teaser video for YouTube and Vimeo
Let’s face it – video is taking over social media and Google search. Nearly 5 billion videos are watched on YouTube every single day, but it’s no longer a place to find the latest cat videos. Turning your whitepaper into a quick promo video is fantastic from a Google search perspective, but it also provides viewers with another way to socially share your content. As with the Slideshare presentation, make sure you don’t give away too much information. But be sure to put some of your brand’s personality in the video and get creative! You can use your mobile device to create a quick and easy video, but there are also tons of apps out there that can assist you in making more professional looking videos as well.
You’ve put a lot of work (or money) into creating an amazing piece of content for lead generation. But this isn’t Field of Dreams, and you’re not Kevin Costner. Just because you build it, doesn’t mean your target audience is going to gravitate to your landing page and download the whitepaper. You have to do some work to help get your content in front of your audience and provide multiple ways to entice them to give you their information as a trade off for valuable, educational content. These are just a few of the methods we’ve seen work, but it’s not an exhaustive list. With the power of the internet and digital marketing, the possibilities are seemingly endless.
If you need help creating new lead generation content or marketing your existing whitepapers, eBooks, or case studies, get in touch with Carve Digital and learn more about our digital marketing solutions for the Telecom, IT VAR, and Cloud businesses.