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How Not To Use White Papers
(or how to destroy your conversion on mobile)
Everyone seems to have mobile content tips these days. They suggest the best development philosophies to follow, OS platforms to design for, screen sizes to think about, and even content types to create for different platforms. To be sure, all of that is key, but it’s also secondary. The most important content tip when it comes to mobile is this: Make your content easy to Get. Make it simple. Yes, that may sound trite. Everyone from Henry David Thoreau to Steve Jobs has stressed simplicity in all aspects of life for a long time. But when it comes to mobile it’s absolutely necessary. In particular, mobile content needs to be utterly simple to access—quickly and easily—or it is absolutely doomed to fail. That sounds obvious, right? You would think so, yet all too often marketers create exceptional content that is barely consumed on mobile devices because it is so difficult to get to. Let’s take the example of the eBook/white paper/case study. Often organizations invest significant resources in developing, publishing and promoting these offerings—with researchers, writers, designers, copy editors, and managers involved. However, rather than making it simple to access this content, marketers often force consumers undertake a series of unwieldy steps. Here’s a recent (real) example from a firm that created a white paper offering mobile marketing tips. And just to be open about this, we are big, big fans of this particular firm’s content, but somehow getting the content is not as simple as we would like it to be.  We will illustrate our journey to obtain the content with images to clearly show what the problem is. Step 1: An email arrives with a link promoting the report.  Indeed, it is an eye-test, and to click the correct link, an agility test as well. Not for folks with big hands.
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