For company websites and intranet sites most organisations have a well defined digital strategy for communicating with clients, alliance partners, suppliers and employees.
When it comes to the digital communication strategy for investors, this sometimes falls short.
Investors are demanding faster and more efficient ways to receive and digest the information that is relevant to them. They often access information on their mobile device. And yet companies are still often only providing a PDF (often with quite a large file size) as the digital version of their Corporate Report, rather than a user-friendly online version. They are also often simply replicating the print report online, rather than thinking through how best to communicate online. This is an especially relevant issue to consider, as often there are more stakeholders accessing the online version than opting to receive a printed copy.
With the significant expense involved in preparing reports it is worth employing best practice communication principles that maximise the returns on your investment by ensuring ease of access, strong visual communication, clarity of navigation and searchability.
Aside from the statutory requirements, your Corporate Report is an opportunity to communicate key messaging and strategy – information required to provide confidence to invest in your organisation, or remain a shareholder. Make your message clear, concise and easily accessible.
‘The most recent AIRA Investor Relations Benchmark Survey found that one of the key areas of change in our industry over the years has been the increasing digital and online presence. Investors want to receive timely information via online communications channels. We have reached a tipping point as far as digital communications is concerned and we expect more listed companies to upgrade their communications methods accordingly.’
–Ian Matheson, Chief Executive Officer, Australasian Investor Relations Association (AIRA)
Some countries are way ahead of the curve in shareholder engagement, producing reports which in most cases are more engaging online than in print. These reports sometimes include features such as video for Managing Director and Chairman Reports, infographics and interactive graphs. These assist in conveying a clearer picture of the messages contained in the report.
Digital reporting is not the next step in corporate reporting. It has been in play for a number of years now. However, it is constantly evolving and becoming increasingly the go-to avenue to access reporting information. Make sure your company is in step and not missing out on this core communication channel. Embrace the opportunity to provide regular communication via digital channels, such as newsletters – reducing the requirement for print and increasing the accessibility of your information.
Messaging is key, and delivering your message via the best possible and relevant medium maximises the opportunity to be heard in and amongst the information overload we all currently experience. Make the experience easy. Make sure the message hits your target and make it stand out.
Client Services Director