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Archive for May, 2010

Oh my. White papers. In my day-to-day blogging life, I get a lot of mileage out of humor, sarcasm, cluelessness, and being a dope in general. But a white paper is the one instance where you simply can’t joke around. You are expected to make a point, to explain, to elucidate, to persuade, to basically NOT be a dork. In other words, my safety net is gone.

For those who care to be illuminated on the topic, what are the necessary components of a white paper? Well, I pulled this from somewhere, and I can’t recall where. My regular readers know that I am always diligent about citing my sources. This time, I just can’t remember where I got this.

Anyway, a good white paper should do the following:

  • Begin with a well developed overview/executive summary/abstract: Attention grabbing, one-paragraph summary of problem, solution and hint of results.
  • State the Problem: Two-to-three paragraphs demonstrating your knowledge of your clients’ challenges and industry trends.  Identify the main objectives of the paper.
  • Describe your product: Incorporate design decisions; industry standards, testing and reliability; best practices and ease of use.
  • Address how your product resolves the problem; tie the two together
    Demonstrate with evidence. Illustrate with case studies and expert testimonials.  Entice with: benefits and returns on investment (ROI) , future applications, developments, and timelines.
  • Conclude:  with confidence and credibility
    Refer to the abstract and summarize your main advantages

So, that’s the setup. The topic at hand is E-commerce, and why a small business owner should take the plunge into online retail. It’s a four part thing that included several interviews, tons of research and a bunch of anxiety about whether I sounded like I knew what I was talking about.  I suppose I will let you be the judge. Of the four parts, the first two are online. Enjoy! Or, rather, endure!

E-commerce White Paper, el Parte Uno

E-commerce White Paper, el Parte Dos

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Instead of writing about writing, I thought I would write about what I am writing. You’re welcome.  Manning the cultural desk (I love saying that) of PremiereCharleston.com, it’s not always easy to come up with topics to write about. And some weeks, Monday blog deadline day seems to roll around very quickly.

So, imagine my delight when an outdoor symphony concert was scheduled close to home on a Saturday night!   Then, imagine my disappointment when it was postponed due to rain! What is a writer to do? Well, if you’re me, you write an entire blog about what a drag it is when the thing you were going to write about gets cancelled. Trust me, it is as exciting as it sounds! Don’t believe me? Then experience the smooth tobacco satisfaction for yourself!  Um, HERE.

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