10 Keys To A Boring, Unread White Paper

Have you read a White Paper lately? Did you get all the way through it?

Of course you didn’t. It was boring right? They’re supposed to be that way, aren’t they?

So to make sure you follow the crowd and make your White Paper just as dull as everyone else’s, here are the 10 surefire things you need to

  1. Craft a Deadly Title – Nothing will compel someone to toss your White Paper into the trash faster than a title like: “Analyzing Best-in-Class Practices for Benchmarking Key Marginalization of Widget Effectiveness.”
  2. Make it a Sales Pitch – Your customers don’t want to be educated or informed. They want to be sold!
  3. Lighten Up on the Research – Don’t spend your valuable time poring over multiple industry sources to provide a well-balanced view. One or two quick resources should be enough to make your White Paper shallow enough.
  4. Go Long – Pack your document with lots of words. Go on and on. find new domain . 40 or 50 pages should be enough to put the most tenacious reader into a slumber. This is also a good way to make it tough to read on a computer screen or mobile device.
  5. Present Just the Facts – Drown the White Paper with dry facts. Don’t try to tell a story that may illuminate the issue at hand and provide more relevance.
  6. Use Jargon – Nothing will make your document more lifeless than the liberal use of industry jargon and acronyms.  Don’t try to explain or define those terms. Everyone should know what they mean, right?
  7. Employ Dull Writing – You want to strive for long, academic sounding sentences that drone on and on. Use passive verbs and a pedantic voice. You don’t want short, action packed sentences that would liven up your White Paper.
  8. Make it Deadly Serious – Don’t try to inject any humor or a lighter tone anywhere in the document. That might make it easier to read and get some of your points across more clearly. Strive for the somber touch.
  9. Don’t Provide Specifics – Make sure your White Paper offers generic advice. Don’t give your audience specific ideas that they can action immediately.
  10. Cram It All In- Stuff all your information into paragraphs of deadly prose. Don’t break it up with interesting sidebars of key points or visually pleasing graphs and charts that support the

So how have your White Papers been received? Have they been effective? Can they be improved?