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Nontraditional white papers in videos & slide share – Do they actually work?

whitepapers images 1It was somewhere in last week a colleague and I were talking about white papers being presented as slide shows, videos and in other nontraditional formats. Well, white papers are almost everywhere. Yes they are all over and surprisingly the nontraditional formats for white papers have almost flooded the net.

We are here to talk about the so-called "white papers”, which are typically formatted as videos and slide shows! Yes, we are here to make certain observations about their effectiveness.

A video Whitepaper

It usually involves a talking head blabbering content at a rather fixed camera angle for a period of let’s say ten minutes or so! Well, there can be some extra text or may be a transcript of what the talking head is saying to slide of the screen.

A slide share Whitepaper

On the other hand a slide share based whitepaper looks somewhat like a PPT. However instead of bulleted points or crisp paragraphs, the entire content of the white paper is included on the slides.

So, what’s the point anyway?

A video or may be a slide show format can benefit the marketer in simply one way – Let’s say if you repurpose your white paper in these formats and simply attach a transcript with SEO keywords, it will be indexed by search engines.

Sadly, aside from that, it's hard to find out any other benefit.

Do these so called white paper formats actually work?

To be honest, I really do not believe that video and slide-share white papers are as effective as traditional white papers, distributed in PDF formats.

In fact the slide show white papers look byzantine text erroneously dumped on to those slides. Ahhhh they are simply tough to read, illegible to scan and o yes tough to search also.

Honestly, considering the samples I have seen of the  video white papers, the so called video medium adds simply nothing more to the overall effectiveness of a white paper.

Still, the odd question hangs in the air – will the videos and slide shows simply replace white papers?

It’s a BIG and resounding NO! When big wigs meet around the boardroom table, all they require is information and informative documents on hand, which can be shared with one another. No way videos and slide share is effective enough when it comes to the point of communicating the complex information, which prospects like to see in a white paper, and especially when there  especially when they need to endorse a rather costly business decision.whitepaper 3

It’s not a bad idea to market the videos and slide shares as interactive snippets or communicative introductions to the deeper content of a full length PDF white paper. Yes, it will enable the visitors of the video and slide sharing sites to be able to find relevant white papers by searching, viewing some introductory content! Sure it’s an incredible way to steer more footprints to download your white paper!