Many have realized that content is king. For this reason, more and more businesses offer PDF downloads on their websites. There are many options for downloadable content, yet it is often unclear as to what to expect from the various formats, among them e-paper, white paper, e-guide and e-book.
What is an e-paper?
"Electronic paper" refers to a certain display technique in which an attempt is made to mimic the look of paper and ink or color as realistically as possible. This technique is found mainly in the so-called e-readers. Furthermore, the term e-paper is to be understood as the electronic image or digital version of a medium which actually exists on paper. Newspapers, for example, now also offer their print editions in electronic form. The printed pages usually correspond one-to-one to the digital version.
Companies that publish an employee magazine, a magazine or a company newspaper might also want to make these media available in digital form as e-paper. The content is usually only up-to-date for a certain period of time: one month, one quarter, or a maximum of one year - until the next issue.
What is a white paper?
A white paper is similar to an article in a magazine. It is the best format to present information, charts and graphics briefly and clearly. A white paper should not be longer than 15 pages so that readers do not get deterred by its scope. This format is used to convey the most important information about a product, service, study or the like. In most cases, the text should not contain specialist jargon so that a large audience, from potential to existing customers, will download it.
It is important to update the content every once in a while as product descriptions can change, links might become invalid or other trends emerge. Offering outdated information for download can have a damaging effect on a company's reputation.
What is an e-book?
An electronic book, also called e-book, can be compared to a specialist book and has - as the name already implies - a larger scope than the previously presented formats. It conveys a lot of knowledge and is thus clearly distinguishable from electronic data sheets or websites. The e-book is rarely used for marketing purposes. If it is used, then usually as a service for customers or partners. Here, too, the content should be checked regularly for relevance over time.
What is an e-guide?
The goal of an e-guide is not primarily to sell something, but to be helpful to readers. This makes it more service-oriented. Useful tips and tricks as well as schedules and checklists can be offered in an e-guide. The design should be clearly structured. A small teaser and a few bullet points are enough to create an e-guide.
Why should you offer such downloads?
The advantages are plentiful. But you have to get the strategy right. It is rather simple: make downloadable content exclusive. Users can download your e-papers and e-books only if they fill out a registration form. This generates new data that will allow you to launch further marketing activities. Moreover, offering content of value to customers is a great way to improve customer loyalty and build your brand.
Read more: Content Marketing.