Free Social Media Whitepaper – Yours For Just 10 Compulsory Factoids

As a freelance technical copywriter I thought I understood how to pre-qualify target prospects by offering a free whitepaper download as the thank you for providing some contact details.

In many cases an optimal approach was to ask for the minimum contact information of name, email address and (possibly) job description.

Anyone doing so then got access to the online whitepaper (sometimes delayed for a few hours, but that’s the subject of a separate post on ‘marketing via scarcity’) and entered a marketing funnel – with the understanding that they could easily opt out at any future time.

However, I’m always learning in this business and was therefore fascinated to come across an online signup form with (from memory) about ten(!) required fields:

Name, Address, Email, Job Title, Phone, Fax, Budget responsibities, projects planned, number of employees, company turnover.

This strikes me as overkill for what was on offer – a free white paper on social media, no less! – and so I abandoned the signup process.

Although I’m left wondering how many others also bailed out in frustration, it’s quite possible that this company have split-tested various online signup forms and discovered what really works for their marketing goals.

How about you?

What’s the optimum number of required fields to maximize downloads of a technology whitepaper?

– Mark McClure

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About the Author

Author: Mark McClure – A freelance b2b case study and white paper writer to the computer networking industry. Based in Tokyo, Japan. About the ‘Samurai Writer’.


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