How Do I Write a White Paper for My ICO?

The question everyone is asking right now is How do I write a white paper for my ICO? In this article, Contentworks, a leading content marketing agency specialising in marketing for the financial services and ICOs breaks it down.

Why White Papers?

In the world of initial coin offerings (ICOs), a whitepaper can make or break your business case.

But here’s the crucial point…

Investors are no longer dazzled by the fluff. Instead, they are after real substance. Click To Tweet

Gone are the days where an ICO can generate $20 million on the back of a poorly edited white paper. To truly stand out from the other 40 ICOs launched each and every day, businesses need to think long and hard about their business case and proof of concept. This includes answering the question: does my business really need an ICO? The white paper is a perfect tool for answering these questions and introducing prospective investors to your company.

Know Your Audience

The first step in developing a solid white paper is to identify your audience and speak to them. Click To Tweet

Are you in the pre-sale stage, where you are targeting high net-worth individuals, or in the public sale phase, where you are trying to appeal to a wider audience? If the latter, you need to develop a whitepaper that is easy to understand. This is especially true if you’re a technology company with an elaborate business model.

Whatever you do, make sure you are addressing a real problem and selling a solution. After all, investors need to know what their money is going to actually do once it enters your hands. If, like so many ICOs you don’t know your audience, then you need to go back to the drawing board until you do. All great marketing campaigns are based around personalisation.

Essential White Paper Sections

Although no two white papers are identical (we hope), they should all have a few core elements to help guide the reader along. In fact, these elements are exactly what investors are looking for when evaluating token raises. Below is a summary of what those sections entail.

  • Executive Summary: It goes without saying that your whitepaper should have a nice, brief summary of your business and the problem you are trying to solve. The Executive Summary goes at the very top of the whitepaper, and shouldn’t be more than one-page long. This will help readers follow your story more closely. It’ll also assist them in going back to evaluate your ICO later.
  • Business Introduction: At some point in your whitepaper, you need to introduce the business by discussing its formation, years in operation and other important metrics.
  • Solution and Product: This usually comes before the business introduction, but regardless of where you put it, you need to spell out in layman terms what business problem your ICO will solve. Too many businesses are launching cryptocurrencies just for the sake of it. Ask yourself: does my token truly serve a purpose? If the answer is yes, then great! Spell it out carefully in this section.
  • Token Implementation: Even if you aren’t dealing with a tech-savvy audience, it’s important to talk about what your token is and how it works. This includes providing technical specifications about the number of tokens you will issue and the fees/costs associated with its issuance.
  • Token Deployment and Roadmap How will you issue your token? What is your timeline for launching your product? Remember: investors like specifics.
  • Team: The people behind your token raise are almost as essential as the ICO itself. Investors want to see that you are qualified to get the job done, and that you have a proven track record in your industry. Your team section should include your core personnel, as well as any advisors you bring on board (i.e. blockchain experts, legal counsel).

Edit Very Carefully

It should go without saying that your ICO white paper needs to be carefully edited for spelling, grammar, syntax and style. Unfortunately, too many ICOs lose all credibility by failing to get their whitepaper properly edited. When speaking to investors, presentation is key. That is why it’s important to hire a content manager or outsource your editing/writing to someone who can ensure you are well represented by the paper. This will save you a lot of time (and credibility) later!

Contentworks can help you polish up your existing whitepaper or develop a new one from scratch. Get in touch with us today for a customised whitepaper solution regardless of where you are in the ICO cycle.

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