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What’s a White Paper? Definition and Goal

A white paper is a doc that outlines a company’s place on a difficulty and gives instructional context to potential prospects or stakeholders. White papers are designed to current persuasive analysis, element an issue at hand, and supply an answer to a difficulty.

Right here, we’ll cowl what a white paper is, its objective, the different sorts, and examples. Think about this your full useful resource for white papers.

What’s a white paper?

A white paper is a persuasive doc that’s utilized in coverage and B2B (business-to-business) advertising. In authorities, a white paper is an informative coverage doc to coach the general public. Such a coverage doc is mostly utilized in Canada, Australia, and the UK.

In B2B advertising, which we’ll give attention to right here, a white paper is a bit of long-form content material much like an book, usually formatted as a report or information. White papers could also be a couple of enterprise’s service, analysis, technique, or compelling buyer suggestions. White papers are usually not ads; they’re paperwork that comprise helpful data for an viewers, no matter whether or not the reader turns into a buyer.

What’s the objective of a white paper?

A B2B white paper’s objective is to assist a reader resolve on or perceive a subject. It’s an in-depth problem-solving information that positions a enterprise or group as an authoritative and persuasive voice on a difficulty, with a transparent, well-researched resolution.

Digital entrepreneurs use white papers to generate new leads, enhance gross sales for the group, and alter the notion of the corporate. Most B2B white papers search to place the group presenting them as thought leaders or authority figures.

What are the various kinds of white papers?

There are 4 important varieties of white papers in B2B advertising. Any white paper can function a reference information; some are designed to be persuasive, whereas others are extra purely informative.


A backgrounder outlines the advantages of a technical or enterprise providing. These are generally known as technical white papers. They’re usually used to complement a product launch, persuade an viewers in a enterprise case, or assist a technical analysis. Backgrounders intention to tell.

Numbered checklist

Numbered lists are basically lengthy, in-depth listicles. They embody ideas, questions, or enterprise data. Listing white papers are used to get consideration with new or provocative data. They usually characteristic persuasive copywriting.


An issue/resolution white paper factors out a nagging enterprise drawback and gives a brand new or improved resolution. Such a white paper is supposed to begin a buyer journey, inform stakeholders, or act as a persuasive doc. Drawback/resolution white papers construct belief and credibility.

Case research

A case research white paper showcases a real-world instance of a buyer’s expertise with a product, service, or resolution. It tells the story of a enterprise buyer, the client’s problem, and the way the product helped them overcome it. Case research often embody technical data and permit prospects to examine themselves utilizing the product in a approach that can match their wants.

What are the important thing parts of a white paper?

White papers act as a useful resource and will show analysis alongside authoritative positioning and narrative. Although they differ, every white paper often contains these key parts:

  • Begins with an introduction or govt abstract
  • Is used earlier than a sale
  • Provides info
  • Contains narrative textual content
  • Is instructional
  • Could embody some opinion

How is a white paper formatted?

Your white paper ought to:

  • Be greater than 5 pages lengthy
  • Use portrait orientation
  • Be formatted as a PDF file
  • Function visualizations like charts, graphs, tables, or different graphics

White paper FAQs

What’s a white paper?

A white paper is an in-depth informational doc that addresses a enterprise or political challenge. White papers usually characteristic a enterprise’s service, analysis, technique, or compelling buyer suggestions.

What’s the objective of a white paper?

A white paper in advertising is used to generate leads, place a enterprise or group as a thought chief, convey authority, and educate. In politics, a white paper is used to tell the general public a couple of potential resolution to an issue.

What are the various kinds of white papers?

There are 4 various kinds of white papers: backgrounders, numbered lists, drawback/options, and case research. A backgrounder outlines the advantages of a enterprise providing, numbered lists are in-depth listicles, drawback/options define an answer to an issue in a persuasive method, and case research exemplify a real-world use case.

What are the important thing parts of a white paper?

White papers have 10 key parts. A white paper ought to be greater than 5 pages lengthy and formatted as a portrait PDF file. They characteristic narrative textual content, visualizations, and info. Usually, a white paper begins with an introduction and ends with a abstract. They’re instructional, used earlier than a sale, and should embody some opinion.

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