White Papers and Case Studies are two excellent ways to promote your business and generate new business. Each requires attention to detail and the ability to grasp new ideas. It will be your goal to explain in some detail the benefits of a product, a new innovation, or a service.
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What are White Papers?
A white paper is a business to business communication consisting of around 2000 words in up to six or more pages. These papers are often technical and illustrate the existence of a need and provide a solution to address that need. They consist of detailed data such as charts, diagrams, statistics, images, graphs, and other technical information.
Goals of a White Paper
The goal of most white papers is to convince a company’s target audience, which is typically the upper management of another company that is also the prospective consumer. Some white papers do focus on the final consumer and not the management. The underlying goals that issuing a white paper resolves are to help a business understand an issue, make a decision or solve a problem. The obvious goal the selling company accomplishes is one of four things:
1) Exhibits their expertise
2) Sells a product or service
3) Promotes a new technology
4) Funds a project
What is a Case Study?
A case study begins with a period of observation. The subject of the case study must be studied. Upon completion of the study, the case study can be written. The case study also requires an interview with the subject of the case study. Case studies involve identifying a problem: an illness, an insufficiency with production, etc. After identifying the problem, a solution is proposed. Finally, the results of the solution are illustrated and explained, including any complications or setbacks. The sole purpose of a case study is to sell a product or service.
The Differences Between a White Paper and Case Study
White papers and case studies are alike in many aspects, but differ in some aspects.The life of a white paper is approximately one year and a case study’s life ranges from one to two years. Both have to be updated after those periods to remain current. Both papers use education and persuasion, but case studies are more focused on selling. Case studies are typically easier and faster to produce than white papers. White papers are typically used earlier in a sales cycle compared to case studies. These are just some of the key differences.
Small Businesses Benefit from White Papers and Case Studies
By informing potential or current clients about new innovations or products on a regular basis, white papers and case studies establish trust, making you the source for new information and may lead to future business.
Small Business can use white papers and case studies:
1) As Lead Generation Tools
2) To Establish Your Expertise or Industry Leadership
3) To Market Your Product or Service
Using either white papers or case studies to expand your business is a good practice. You maintain regular contact with your potential or current clients, plus you are constantly informing them of your presence. You position yourself as the provider of a service or product, which is the solution to their needs.