One of the biggest ways to engage shareholders is through virtual annual meetings. But what happens the rest of the year?
In a previous blog post we mention that one way to adapt to digital trends that have combined to produce a paradigm shift in investor communications and increase shareholder engagement is to engage shareholders throughout the year. We recognize that this can be easier said than done.
That’s why we recommend the following steps to create an effective year-round shareholder engagement plan.
- Choose the most optimal medium. Experiment with new communications techniques – live and recorded video, interactive documents or investor roadshows. A face-to-face meeting is also recommended at least once a year.
- Identify and rank relevant investors. Every company’s shareholder base differs and has varying retail shareholder weighting. The typical profile of a retail shareholder is a long-term investor, which means it’s worth the effort to understand who they are. From there, analyze their importance and rank them by relevance. In addition, consider the connections that investors have with each other.
- Research and prepare for engagement. Prior to actually contacting shareholders, conduct research to determine which issues are of concern to your top-ranked shareholders, their standard policies, and their voting patterns on such issues. Then focus on one topic at a time to manage your input.
- Be transparent about final outcomes. Research shows that one of the key challenges with retail investor voting is a lack of connection with the company. Provide a summary of the interactions. Let shareholders know what follow-up actions have been taken and, if they haven’t, the reasons as to why.
Successful, long-term investor engagement is achieved by forming strong relationships between issuers and shareholders through meaningful interactions and two-way communication between both parties. Taking proactive steps today helps ensure your relationship with shareholders is healthy and sustainable for the long term.
For additional information, please contact us.