White papers
Be the industry thought leader

There’s no better way to convince people of your capability than to prove it.

And, short of getting your subject matter experts in a meeting room with your prospective customers, there’s no better way to prove it than to write white papers. (Case studies are great too.)

But before we talk about the whys and hows, let’s first agree on the answer to one very important question…

What even is a white paper?

The term “white paper” or “whitepaper” has a variety of definitions, depending on where you look.

We like Wikipedia’s the best…

“A white paper is an authoritative report or guide that informs readers concisely about a complex issue and presents the issuing body’s philosophy on the matter. It is meant to help readers understand an issue, solve a problem, or make a decision.”

Why write a white paper?

You’ll notice some key words and phrases in the above:

  • “authoritative”
  • “guide”
  • “informs”
  • “help readers understand”
  • “solve a problem”
  • “make a decision”

Thinking about it now, isn’t this exactly what you want your content to do? You want readers to be thinking:

“Sheesh! These guys really know what they’re talking about. They’re obviously the experts in the field. The benchmark. No one else even comes close. I just hope they’re not too expensive for me. But I suppose I can stretch the budget a little further.”

What’s the key to a
great white paper?

  • Understanding – Your copywriter must be able to understand the subject matter properly. Not just superficially as they could probably get away with when writing web copy, but properly. They have to take the time to really dig in and drill down. And you have to be prepared to educate them.
  • Structure – Readers need to be able to read your whitepaper from start to finish, and feel like they’ve learned something. It’s not enough to just pepper them with facts, figures and opinions. You have to make an overarching point, and leave them with a memorable sense of achievement or a lightbulb moment. In a long document (whitepapers are usually 3,000+ words), the structure needs to be planned out carefully, and lovingly refined during the writing process, until it’s just right.
  • Writing – It may be a technical report or guide, but that doesn’t mean it has to read terribly. To the contrary, it needs to read beautifully, otherwise your readers will simply give up. Perhaps even before they start. Your white paper copywriter needs to draw them in, keep them reading and get them nodding. And for that, you need writing that’s comfortable, friendly and accessible. But obviously it still needs to be credible and authoritative. You can probably see why that’s somewhat of a challenge…

We can also design it for you!

Did you know Silver Pistol also does whitepaper design? So your whitepaper will not only read great, it will look great too!

Want a
whitepaper writing quote?

If you’re after a smart copywriter who can deliver a whitepaper that’s worthy of being called a lead magnet, email us for a quote.