What Makes a Good White Paper Good... (part three)

Here is the third point in a series that looks at the key features to consider when writing an IT white paper... so that you not only get your reader's interest, but keep it.

Are you part of the problem or part of the solution?

Identifying a problem isn’t enough, no matter how much "affinity" is established with the reader (see previous post and Michael Stelzner's site). The proposed solution must be both practical and clearly stated.

If the solution that ostensibly addresses the egregious problem is utterly incomprehensible due to stratum after stratum of obfuscating and argot-laden cant, the reader is left high and dry—and justifiably frustrated. Likewise, if the proposed solution isn’t practical: if it involves too high a financial investment, too much time to implement, or simply too much information to absorb all at once (Stelzner asserts that a white paper shouldn’t exceed 11, count 'em, 11 pages), the reader will skim through to the end and probably huff an impatient sigh.

And then look elsewhere for another white paper that not only describes the problem well, but also proposes a viable and easily-implemented solution.

Looking for a solution to your IT problem? Browse through TEC's white paper library, by industry, vendor, or topic.
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