Very often we send or receive all kinds of different documents online and offline, such as proposals, branded presentations, training packets, etc. All those papers have a purpose. We would like people to do X when they read it, right? Here are a few things you can try:
1. Complement with video
All proposals we send have a customised video that points to a branded page on our website where the prospect can learn more about the service and what they can expect. Video provides a full different taste about what you offer. Think about your training material or anything that’s been delivered traditionally for so long. Why not add a link to a video where the person that wrote that piece of content can expand more on the subject?
2. Always use a URL shortener
We rely on Bit.ly. This service provides you with a shorter (handier) version of any long URL you might want to share. You can also customise the name of the link. It also provides valuable insights about the amount of clicks your content is getting and the regions where those clicks are coming from. Finally, Bit.ly will generate a QR code for each shortened link. In the example above, if the prospect decided to print out the document he/she would still be able to scan that code with a mobile and watch the video!
Use QR codes also at events so people can easily scan and download your documents.
3. Allow people to interact in your ebooks or white papers
Since Twitter, avatars have demonstrated to be very powerful. Use them in your documents to provide a face for the expert writing the content and invite your audience to continue the conversation providing a link to the specific website, blog or even your LinkedIn Group! Chris Brogan did this in his first book, “Social Media 101″. That’s taking reading (one action only) to the next level.
4. Facilitate discussions with polls
Create a poll and embed it on any web page. You can do that with Polldaddy.com or why not with LinkedIn to direct people to your Group. Share a link on your document and also a QR code (for offline users) that points to that poll. Check for instant results during or after your presentation for example.
5. Include sharing options
Any promotional PDF that you share online should have a call-to-action asking users to share it more. Make it easy for them. Hubspot do this on every paper they distribute.
6. Finish strongly
At the end of any typical document, I usually see a brand, name, address and maybe email. You can do better than that. Include a video screenshot pointing to the resource online, invite your audience to join your LinkedIn Group, sign up to your email updates, share the social networks to connect with the speaker, etc. Remember to always include a shortened URL, otherwise you won’t be able to track your efforts.
How do you currently optimise your documents?