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Is Size Important? A White Paper’s Non-White Status

It’s an intriguing finding! Organizations still disagree on the format of a white paper in a time when information exchange is free, universal, and in real time.

Hewlett-Packard recently displayed their lack of knowledge on this issue in a number of startling ways, according to an article published on The White Paper Pundit. On one occasion, the enormous technological corporation made the unpardonable mistake of calling a one-page advertising a white paper!

Why does this document stump both small and large businesses? One explanation is that a white paper is a highly sought-after and in-demand item. It demonstrates intellectual leadership in any sector, and businesses aspire to achieve that standing. To publish as many articles as they can, they are keen. Many of them do not devote enough time to providing their authors with the advanced writing abilities needed for this line of work. The F4 Size paper may be a perfect choice for photo print.

In the current business climate, marketing communication writers have the difficulty of creating content for readers with limited attention spans. According to Jonathan Kantor’s book “Crafting White Paper2.0,” choosing the right content size involves weighing the costs and benefits.

The cost of reading a paper is the overall amount of time required, but the benefit is the lengths to which readers will go in order to learn anything useful as a result of reading that material.

The reader becomes more disengaged and more inclined to click away to another information source as online material gets lengthier. Online users lack the time and concentration needed to read lengthy documents.

In the same book, a research conducted in 2009 by the Information Week Business Technology Network is highlighted. 500 experienced managers were polled on the “ideal” length of a white paper, and 86% said less than 10 pages, while 50% said less than five pages!

Therefore, experts recommend that the optimal length for a white paper be between six and eight pages, with the appropriate language and visual formatting to make it simple to read. A reader can locate important informational tidbits by swiftly skimming the article. The reader will be tempted to take a little more time to give it a preliminary read and maybe even a more thorough read if these nuggets are helpful. One should use F4 Size for the photo print as a perfect image.

In today’s white paper, size obviously counts, and businesses like HP must learn to do it well or risk being written off as being unqualified in this field!

Patricia Redsicker, owner of WordView Editing, assists entrepreneurs and small businesses in establishing themselves as clients’ go-to resource for solutions. In order to do this, she works with them to create engaging marketing materials, such as case studies, press releases, newsletters, and white papers. She works in the Baltimore region and engages often with the local business sector in Howard County, Maryland.