In part one, I introduced this video white paper idea, and pointed out a terrific resource for learning more about white papers in general. Now we can move on to…
What is a Video White Paper?
A few years ago, I began taking the concepts used in developing white papers for clients and applying them to video-based presentations. Not really canned slide-shows, not really product demos, and not just sales presentations, but a mix of the three. I started calling them video white papers, because like a good white paper, they focused on the audience and their issues, not the authors and all the amazing benefits they have to offer. My goal was to provide an alternative to a typical presentation and demo.
The approach is very similar to developing a white paper – marketing through educating and informing. A video white paper is all about the customer and it tells a story. It combines solid copywriting techniques, good storytelling, learning (particularly e-learning) concepts, and interesting supporting visuals to demonstrate your expertise and your story to a potential customer.
Wait a Minute – Isn’t That Just a Demo or Presentation?
Actually, no – at least not from my point of view. Sure, we may be arguing over semantics, but that’s part of the point. When the folks I worked with heard “demo” or “presentation” they turned tail and ran. But when a white paper was going to be delivered to an advisory board who held the purse strings, it had to be good. They liked white papers – because they are informative and educational (at least good ones). Demos were consultants banging their chests about their “solution” and trying to gee-whiz a jaded audience. A video white paper stood out – not because of what it was called, but because of the approach to the content.
So what’s in it for me?
I’m glad you asked, because now you’re thinking like your customers do. As a home-based entrepreneur, you have skills – and more importantly, expertise. You use that expertise every day to provide value to your customers. Just like you’re thinking “what’s in this for me,” your customers and prospects are always thinking the same thing. The power of a video white paper is that you get to answer that question – by educating, informing, and telling your story. It’s a tool to expand your reach and showcase your expertise – while addressing the issues your customers care about.
Sounds good, how do I get started?
In part 3, I’ll cover some of the resources and tools available, and talk about a site that’s built on a similar concept – marketing through educating, using online video. If you want to get a jump start, go take a look at what they’re doing at Tubetorial.
I knew #2 would be good … now I’m all jazzed waiting for part 3 and I just wrote down a GREAT idea this just gave me.
What’s that ? Oh, it has to do with case studies, video white papers and consulting.
You da man, Tony !
Soory to be off topic, but this blog is so easy to read. what’s that font, what size and weight, etc.
The sub-heads too are perfect. What size are they ?
There’s something about this that makes me not need my 44 year old, in 12 days, reading glasses.
Thanks, Mike – I’m glad I got you thinking. The reason I decided to write this series is to get folks to imagine how they can use this kind of stuff to add value to their marketing efforts. Just another tool in the box.
The font is 14px verdana, with 24px line-height. The subheads are 16px bold. That comes from my years of designing Web apps for people who didn’t like using the Web. Making things easy to read improved usability and the learning curve a bunch (can’t remember the actual numbers, but we split-tested).
Tony – Cool concept. Have you done one of these? – Mike
Mike – Yes, I’ve done several for corporate clients. I just recently began to see how they could really benefit home-based business folks – especially those who are selling their expertise.
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