“We Expect Media We Can Manipulate” – What About White Papers?

The title quote’s taken from ‘CK’ Kerley’s wonderful thought leadership white paper on “The Mobile Revolution & B2B“. Go get it now – a free 17-page pdf download, with great graphic design, and well worth reading.

I’ve been following Ms. Kerley for a while now and am very impressed by her knowledge of marketing in an increasingly mobile business world. Having finally made time to read her positioning paper on the mobile revolution & b2b, I suspect her key message will have profound implications for the how, where and why of white papers in a b2b marketing environment.

White papers will (probably) still have a significant role to play in b2b marketing efforts but the way in which people consume that information may change quite radically.

For example, with the rise of smart phones and more recently, of tablet computers, it’s both a virtual and physical revolution in many corporations. Fast disappearing is a world where the desktop PC and a desk bound executive are together most of the day.

Why? People are mobile because wireless technologies and devices allow them to be so. And with always-on Internet mobile devices by their side, for many of these folks their first digital contact with a b2b marketer’s message will be via tablet or smart phone.

What a sobering thought!

CK’s paper also contains some links to short video clips of her explaining the impact around this evolving mobile revolution. I recommend you watch them. They certainly made me think about how key decision makers might interact with an IT vendor’s white paper series.

The big risk is that the white paper itself, the landing page or related micro site aren’t optimized for a mobile user. Imagine the ‘marketing car crash’ when the visitor accesses this content via a hand held device…

For some of my white paper IT clients I suspect it will be a shock to realize they have to adapt their white paper content not only to suit different ‘buyer persona’, but they also have to deliver that content in ways best suited to how the prospect likes to consume said content. This means taking existing content and making it smarter and snappier for a mobile audience.

Five Quotes On The Mobile Revolution & B2B Marketing

I’ll end this post with what I think are five eye-opening quotes from CK Kerley’s paper that should make anyone marketing to executives in a b2b environment pay attention.

1) “Folks need things in a bite-sized way.”

2) “Can you wait until after the presentation to tweet?” 😉

3) “Real-time is the only speed.”

4) We live in a “… multitasking, multichannel society.”

5) “Instead of a society that looks ahead, we are now a culture that constantly (and literally) looks down.”

One very important take-away for me was CK’s recommendation to include more video aimed at mobile b2b users. For example, this post would probably make a decent 5 minute clip that someone could watch (or just listen to) on their mobile when they have a few minutes to spare.

What are the chances of these “few minutes” occurring on a desktop PC when they’re in an office full of colleagues and crises!

Vive the b2b mobile revolution!

– Mark ‘white paper writer‘ McClure

PS – This post was originally published on technologymarketers.com but is included here because of a change in business plans by the fine folks at technologymarketers. I very much enjoyed working with them and hope our paths cross again.

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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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