What’s the purpose of a prospectus?
The purpose of a business prospectus is to secure support for a planned product or service. You would use a business prospectus to showcase information necessary for investors to determine whether they want to fund your venture. Mission statements, market analyses, and financial projections are all basic components of a prospectus–your goal, as a businessperson seeking funding, is to ensure that potential investors will find these components persuasive.
For this assignment, I suggest following the process described on pages 396-397, beginning with “Creating Successful Business Plans.” This section is a useful roadmap for drafting and will also inform what I look for while I’m grading. In particular, focus on addressing the following points in your prospectus:
- Summary (of prospectus overall)
- Mission and objectives
- Company and industry
- Products or services
- Market and competition
- Marketing strategy
- Design and development plans
- Overall schedule
- Critical risks and problems
- Financial projections and requirements
- See Rubric
Strategies for planning and pre-writing:
All of the strategies we discussed while reading Ch. 1 and 5–and that you put into practice while writing workplace memos and blog posts–will still be useful here. Because the prospectus is a longer assignment, however, the planning and pre-writing stages become much more important. Focus on creating a detailed outline in order to make your drafting process easier and your prospectus more coherent.
Your first steps toward a persuasive prospectus can be broken down into two categories: contentand rhetorical strategies. In other words: what are the facts, and how will you choose to present them?
When planning content, focus on big picture questions related to your business. What is your product or service? Who is it for? How will it be priced and distributed? Refer back to what you learned in Ch. 13 regarding researching and processing data.
Once you’ve established the basic information about your product or service, you can start pre-writing notes about your rhetorical strategies. Your audience will comprise investors who are learning about you and your company for the first time. Reviewing Table 14.3 (page 399) will be useful in this stage of planning.