Reaching Investors Through Social Media


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This presentation provides an overview of how companies, through their investor relations departments, are using social media to communicate with shareholders, analysts and investors.

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Reaching Investors Through Social Media

  1. 1. Reaching investors through social media<br />Presentation to Social Media Breakfast Club, Abilene, Texas<br />Dec. 2, 2010<br />By Dave Hogan, APR<br />
  2. 2. My background in investor relations<br />Serve as director of investor relations and corporate communications for First Financial Bankshares on part-time basis while teaching full time at ACU.<br />Worked as full-time IR officer for two companies in Southeast U.S. prior to moving to Abilene in late 2001.<br />Served as investor relations and corporate communications consultant for various public companies through PR agencies in Nashville and Charlotte.<br />Previously worked as business-news journalist and as a stockbroker for A.G. Edwards.<br />
  3. 3. Target audiences for investor relations (IR)<br />Institutional investors<br />Analysts<br />Retail shareholders<br />Financial and business media<br />
  4. 4. Traditional investor relationscommunication channels<br />News releases<br />Quarterly and annual reports<br />Fact sheets<br />Investor kits<br />SEC documents (10-K, 10-Q, proxies)<br />
  5. 5. IR communication used to be a closed club<br />Prior to the SEC’s new disclosure policies (“Reg FD” launched in 2000), retail investors and the general public were largely shut out of the conversation between corporations and Wall Street.<br />Presentations to investor groups – by invitation only<br />Quarterly investor conference calls – by invitation only<br />Field trips and home-office visits<br />Private phone conversations with corporate executives<br />
  6. 6. IR now more democratic, open<br />Regulatory change from the SEC has forced companies to create a more equal playing field where “the little guy” can gain better access to information about the companies in which they own stocks.<br />Technology has hastened the democratization of investor communications.<br />
  7. 7. Web 1.0 IR tools<br />Financial news websites and corporate IR websites put information within reach of the everyday small investor in a timely manner.<br />IR websites have expanded from first-generation bulletin boards to dynamic information hubs that are the leading source of investor information at many companies.<br />E-mail made it easier for investors to communicate directly with corporate investor relations officers.<br />
  8. 8. Web 2.0 for investor relations<br />Corporations are late to the party when it comes to integrating social media tools into their investor communication programs.<br />IR lags behind marketing, PR departments in using social media<br />Companies’ fear of SEC andshareholder lawsuits hinders innovation<br />Many CEOs, CFOs and other corporate executives still living in pre-social media world<br />
  9. 9. Social media tools for IR<br />Twitter is most popular social media tool for IR purposes.<br />Facebook has not emerged as a mainstream IR communication channel.<br />YouTube, Flickr popular for sharing multi-media content.<br />
  10. 10. Twitter is leading IR social media tool<br />More than a third of U.S. public companies use Twitter for IR.<br />Most use it to announce previously disclosed news, such as earnings announcements and other corporate news.<br />Twitter used to drive traffic back to corporate IR website<br />Fewer use Twitter for value-added discussion or to engage audience in two-way conversation <br />
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  13. 13. Reminder: Cisco Conference Call for Q3 Fiscal Year 2010 Financial Results | Weds, May 12, 1:30PM PT | 5:53 PM May 7th via TweetDeck <br /> Cisco's Q3'10 global highlights in French ( & German ( Spanish coming soon! (RT @MarcMuz) 4:22 PM May 11th via TweetDeck <br /> Cisco CEO John Chambers in Q3 FY10 #earnings release: "probably the strongest quarter in our history." | 3:51 PM May 12th via TweetDeck <br /> #CFO Video: Cisco reports Q3 FY2010 financial results | #earnings 3:29 PM May 12th via TweetDeck <br />
  14. 14. You Tube for IR<br />Tellinvestorstory verbally with video<br />Good for earnings announcements, major news<br />Answer expected questions<br />Cost effective<br />
  15. 15. Company channel on You Tube<br />
  16. 16. Blogs<br />Blogs provide maximum flexibility for tellingthe investorstory in words, photos, video and podcasts.<br />Blogs can add value, depth to conversation<br />Blogs are the most time-consuming social media tool for IR staff<br />One blog often covers IR and corporate communications<br />
  17. 17. Dell’s blog dedicated to IR<br />
  18. 18. “If you have questions or suggested discussion points for next week’s call, please post them here or email them to me at We will use your feedback to address the most popular topics on the conference call.”<br />
  19. 19. More social media tools<br />Slideshare<br />StockTwits<br />Linkedin<br />Seeking Alpha<br />
  20. 20. <ul><li> Post PowerPoint presentations, PDFs, Word documents and videos on
  21. 21. Slideshare allowscompaniesto greatly expand the number of views oftheir existingIR PowerPoint presentations.
  22. 22. Slideshare makes it easy for bloggers to embedIRslides into their sites. </li></li></ul><li>
  23. 23.
  24. 24. <ul><li> Monitor discussion about your company and stock from Twitter on StockTwits
  25. 25. Monitor Twitter discussion about peer group
  26. 26. Set up StockTwits Desktop for continuous monitoring of multiple stocks or subscribe to StockTwits TV.</li></li></ul><li>
  27. 27. <ul><li> View company profiles
  28. 28. Research institutional investors
  29. 29. Search by company or city
  30. 30. Engage in group discussions</li></li></ul><li>Sample Linkedin search: Dallas, Texas, USA, “investment management” companies<br />
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  33. 33. collects best research articles from investment newsletters, blogs and other sources; widely read by analysts, institutional investors, retail investors<br />Seeking Alpha is searchable by stock ticker symbol, allowing IR officers to monitor commentary on their company and peer group<br />Seeking Alpha provides conference call transcripts from 1,500 U.S. companies<br />
  34. 34. Seeking Alpha<br />
  35. 35. What’s next?<br />IR websites now being updated for mobile viewers.<br />What is the future of the traditional news release?<br />Annual reports are morphing into multimedia, digital communication tools<br />Will Facebook finally be accepted as an investor communication tool?<br />