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How To Make the Most of Your IR Webcasts

In the world of investor relations, the webcast has emerged as a powerful tool for connecting with stakeholders, building trust and telling engaging investment stories.

With the shift towards video, the importance of crafting a compelling and accessible IR webcast has never been more important.

In this post, we dive into the nuances of maximizing the impact of your IR webcasts, equipping you with the latest insights and best practices to elevate your communications.

Timing Is Everything: Scheduling Your Webcast

Successful IR webcasts begin with strategic timing.

You must meticulously analyze the schedules of your competitors, industry events and major investment conferences to ensure your webcast does not clash with these crucial activities.

By avoiding conflicts, you can capture the undivided attention of your target audience and position your company at the forefront of their minds.

Navigating the Crowded Calendar

Carefully mapping out the event calendars of your industry peers and key investment forums is the first step in planning your IR webcast.

Identifying potential scheduling conflicts allows you to select a date and time that maximizes participation and engagement from your stakeholders.

Aligning with Industry Rhythms

Understanding the cadence of your industry's earnings calls, investor days and other significant events is crucial.

Strategically positioning your webcast to complement these activities, rather than compete with them, can amplify its impact and ensure your message resonates with the right audience at the right time.

Leveraging Seasonal Trends

Certain times of the year may be more conducive to capturing the attention of investors, such as the period leading up to the annual general meeting or the release of quarterly financial results.

Carefully considering seasonal trends and investor behaviors can help you time your webcast for maximum engagement and impact.

Promoting Your Webcast: Crafting a Comprehensive Strategy

Once the timing is set, the next step is to effectively promote your webcast through a multichannel communications strategy.

Leveraging a combination of news releases, email outreach and social media announcements can help you reach a wider audience and generate anticipation for your event.

Harnessing the Power of News Releases

Crafting a well-written news release that highlights the key details of your webcast - including the date, time and agenda - can be a powerful tool for generating media coverage and driving attendance.

Ensure that these releases are distributed through verified, reputable channels and reach your target audience.

Engaging Through Email Outreach

Personalized email invitations to your existing investor base, as well as relevant industry contacts, can be an effective way to drive registration and attendance.

Tailor your messaging to address the specific interests and needs of your audience and consider segmenting your email lists to optimize engagement.

Leveraging Social Media Platforms

Amplifying your webcast promotion through your company social media channels - such as LinkedIn - and your IR website can help you reach a broader audience and foster anticipation.

Leverage visually compelling graphics, concise messaging and strategic hashtag usage to capture the attention of your followers and encourage participation.

Delivering an Engaging Webcast Experience

With the groundwork laid, the next step is to ensure your webcast delivers an engaging and impactful experience.

From the format and content to the accessibility features and interactive elements, every aspect of the presentation must be meticulously crafted to captivate and inform your stakeholders.

While live events, such as the AGM and earnings call, once reigned supreme, now your webcast may be what attracts the largest audience of all.

Prioritizing Accessibility

Digital access litigation is on the rise. Based on lawsuits filed by mid-year 2023, UsableNet predicted that there will be 4,220 suits filed by the end of 2023, relative to 4,035 in 2022 and 2,314 in 2018. 

Fear of legal reprisal is important but it’s not the main reason to focus on digital inclusion. With a quarter of Americans considered “disabled” under the current Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) definition, this population constitutes an extremely important audience for all companies.

Going above and beyond requirements when it comes to accessibility sends a positive message about your company—and may give you a material edge over those competitors not taking digital inclusion seriously enough. Remember that digital accessibility is not a web trend but is rather a requirement for public companies.

Fortunately, IROs have reached a stage when accessibility guidelines are clear and achievable. Help is available in many places, but the best place to start is with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG).

Features like machine-readable text and closed captioning for video are readily available. And furnishing a written transcript of investor events so those with hearing loss can read comments is easy to do and greatly appreciated.

Utilizing Text-Based Q&A

IROs tend to avoid chat functions and instead favor text-based Q&A functions that are visible only to them.

Even if a company doesn’t plan to answer many questions, text-based Q&A is a great way to put a finger on the pulse of your listeners and to identify trends. It may also tell you what aspects of your messaging aren’t hitting home and should be covered either in an FAQ or in subsequent conversations with investors.

Using Pause and Restart Buttons

When watching an archived webcast, participants want features that let them absorb information at their own pace.

Including Surveys 

Asking participants their opinions is a way to keep an audience engaged.

More importantly, though, surveys are a way to gather feedback and data, while engaging with stakeholders in a nearly effortless way.

Asking for Basic Contact Details

While gathering lots of information for future targeting is tempting, it can be a turnoff. Consider only collecting participants’ names, professional affiliation and email addresses.

Measuring Success: Evaluating the Impact of Your IR Webcast

Assessing the effectiveness of your IR webcast is essential for continuously improving your communication performance.

By analyzing key metrics, gathering participant feedback and identifying areas for enhancement, you can refine your approach and ensure that your future webcasts deliver maximum impact.

Tracking Engagement Metrics

Closely monitoring metrics such as registration numbers, live attendance and post-event viewership can provide valuable insights into the level of interest and engagement generated by your webcast.

Additionally, tracking the duration of viewership and the engagement levels during specific segments of the presentation can help you identify areas that resonate most with your audience.

Analyzing Audience Behavior

Closely examining the questions and comments submitted during the webcast's interactive Q&A sessions can reveal the specific concerns and interests of your audience.

Identifying trends in the types of questions asked can help you refine your messaging and address the most pressing issues faced by your stakeholders.

Continuous Improvement

By regularly evaluating the performance of your IR webcasts and incorporating the insights gained from your analyses, you can continuously enhance the quality and impact of your investor relations communications.

This iterative process ensures that your future webcasts remain relevant, engaging and effective in reaching and informing your target audience.

In the evolving landscape of investor relations, the IR webcast has emerged as a powerful tool for companies to tell their investment stories.

By mastering the art of effective webcast planning, promotion, delivery and evaluation, you can elevate your storytelling and strengthen your company's reputation as a transparent and accessible IR leader.

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