About Red Wagon Writing
Megan Tsai is a content specialist providing marketing copywriting and consulting services for clients across the nation.
Press releases and press kits
Trade and feature articles
Catalog descriptions and articles
Brochures and booklets
Video and CD-ROM scripting
Corporate image pieces
Contact Megan Tsai
Copywriter & Content Specialist
Owner, Red Wagon Writing
3265 Streamside Dr.
Greenwood, IN 46143
|Red Wagon Writing
Marketing Tip of the Month
Creating a Customer Best Practice White Paper
The information in a white paper or special report typically comes from an expert within your organization – and there’s nothing wrong with that. Having white papers written (or ghostwritten) by your executives and staff establishes them as thought leaders and gives clients and prospects access to their valuable expertise.
Despite its many benefits, this type of white paper has one weakness: readers recognize your interest in winning their business, leading them to take your advice with a grain of salt. After all, if your prospect was looking for completely unbiased advice on a topic would they turn to your company? Probably not. Instead, they would ask a colleague in their peer group. For this reason, it’s a good idea to add “customer best practice” white papers and articles into your content marketing mix.
In some ways, a customer best practice white paper is similar to a customer case study. Both frame your solution in terms of the client experience. However, a customer best practice white paper is broader in scope and more solution-focused. It examines a problem or pain point your company’s prospects face, and then distills information from multiple customer sources into a set of best practices that provide a solution from the customer perspective.
If you are interested in creating a customer best practice white paper for your content marketing program, here are five steps to help you get started.
1. Form the question.
What do your best-in-class clients know that their peers could benefit from? Don’t worry, this doesn’t mean sharing industry secrets. For example, if your company sells and installs computer servers, what information could your most successful customers impart about best practices for server management? Those are the topics you can focus your white paper around.
2. Choose your tool.
Online survey tools such as Survey Monkey or Zoomerang make it easy to survey a large group of clients quickly. Offering a small gift – or even a free copy of the survey results – is a good way to entice your customers to participate. You could also pick several key clients and set up case-study type phone interviews with them. For a larger response, have your sales representatives ask their clients a couple quick questions during their regular check-in and send their responses along to you.
3. Consider your questions.
Just because you have the opportunity to survey your clients doesn’t mean you should ask every possible question. Improve response rates by focusing your questions and asking only those that clients and prospects will really want answers to. Most questions should be multiple choice or true/false – open-ended questions should be used sparingly.
4. Analyze the responses.
Once you receive the responses, comb through them for common threads and eye-opening insights. Having an internal expert’s interpretation of the responses can help the white paper writer pull out the most important points.
5. Write the white paper.
Bring a copywriter on board and provide them with your survey responses, expert analysis and any relevant background information or supporting third-party research. The writer will combine these elements into a compelling white paper that delivers valuable, hard-to-find peer insights and best practices that customers and prospects will devour.
Writing Tip of the Month
Cut this Line from your Emails ...
Hello, my name is Megan Tsai and I’m a business copywriter.
Sure, introducing yourself in this way is effective when you’re calling a new prospect. But, it’s a line you should leave out of your emails. Unlike phone calls, emails have “from” fields and signatures that include your name and title, giving your email recipient all the information they need.
Instead of wasting your reader’s time and risk losing their interest, just dive right into the subject matter of your email – no introduction needed.