Recently I registered at a corporate website to download some whitepapers. The registration process was smooth and the documents that I downloaded were designed very nicely. However, the content was mediocre.
In fact, the whitepapers were glorified brochures at best.
The company must have spent a fortune to design those whitepapers. However, since they were not selling brochure design services, there was nothing to be impressed about.
A great design piece won’t salvage mediocre content.
What was fascinating was that they chose to place these assets (??) behind the gates (registration). For me, it was a message from the company about what the company thinks as “valuable.” Unfortunately now, I will suspect other things (products and services) that company is charging for.
Yes, the company needs to build their list but they have to keep something really “valuable” behind the gates. Otherwise, there is no need to keep the gates locked.
Barriers are not required in the new world. But if you have to put them, ensure that there is something “remarkable” behind those barriers.
For a good discussion about whitepaper registration, please take a look at this (controversial) article:
ClickDocuments: Free Your Whitepapers From Registration