How to Design an Effective Investor Relations Website
You are focused on growing your business. It’s your website, however, that tells your unique story to investors, and financial journalists. Your website is a strong marketing tool that should provide relevant, unique content and emphasize your company’s special brand. You need to stand out from the crowd and apart from the competition. Consider the following to determine whether your website meets the needs of today’s media-driven environment.
Check out your website’s overall design. Does it provide aesthetically pleasing videos, images, and charts? Shapes, colors and logos should be inviting and integrate seamlessly into the design. If possible, include podcasts and videos. This will enhance your text and make for a livelier, more informative website. Information should be labeled to make it easy and logical to find and use, preferably with a simple click that provides contact information, share price and other company information. A recent survey found that investors are particularly interested in management’s goal and imminent plans in helping them create an overall impression of the company’s story. They want to know the company’s vision. Ensure that website users are left with a positive feel for your business.
Although being able to download a company’s annual report and other large documents is useful, many individual investors can become intimidated by a load of financial data. Important information is best kept on one page, with the most relevant on the top half.
Your website should be readily accessible on all mobile devices. Many readers will be reading your information on-the-go, so make sure your information can be viewed at any time. The days of accessing information on a desktop are long gone. Most readers have a short attention span and dislike having to hunt to information they need. Have everything easily labeled.
It is important to know that search engine optimized is crucial in driving traffic your way. Key words and phrases should be integrated in your content and social media sites for optimal visibility. Don’t forget pay-per-click advertising to increase your site’s activities. Used together, your website could draw up to 25 percent more visitors. Potential investors or other parties should be able to leave contact information that lets them receive regular company updates.
Although the internet has drastically changed how companies conduct business, a 2016 study indicates that investor relations officer’s have been reluctant to use social media to increase their website traffic due to a perceived lack of interest in the investment community. However, 80 percent of investors are regular social media users, with 30 percent of investors indicating that information found on social media influenced their investment decisions. This number is expected to grow with the increased use of social media platforms. LinkedIn is a site used by educated professionals and is a useful, strategic platform to reach out to potential investors with relevant blog content.
Twitter is another useful site that can create interest in your company. It is so popular, it lets companies us a “cashtag” symbol that allows investors to follow any mentions of their particular company in real time. IRO’s can use this information to determine patterns in corporate activity and earnings. IRO teams are able to communicate with investors in real time and respond to actual questions and concerns. This is also an opportunity to have your company highlighted in the most positive light to your followers.
Any IRO that neglects to integrate social media platforms in its marketing plan will invariably be left behind. While social media may be new and daunting to some investment communities, it is here to stay and should be seen as a vital communication tool for investors.
There are many opinions as to what elements drive the best IRO websites. What is clear, however, is that updated information, easily accessed and understood are the critical forces behind a successful IRO website. Used with some creativity and a savvy marketing plan, your IRO site can elevate from merely so-so to great.
Be sure to check out our IR + Communications if you are an executive of a publicly traded company, you might be interested in our offerings. We take pride in being ahead of the curve of building amazing communities and advocates around brands with the hopes of building a long term shareholding base.