An Investor Day is an opportunity to present a consistent and cohesive message about your business, opportunity and strategy. It’s also a great forum to clearly distinguish your company from competitors and to showcase the breadth and depth of management. Financial Profiles has planned and executed Investor & Analyst Days for dozens of clients over the years, and here are some of our top tips for a memorable and successful event.
1. Think in terms of headlines. In planning content for the event, think through what key messages you want the audience to remember. If you could write the analyst report headlines following the event, what would they say? Keep it simple – define the key messages you want to deliver and build all content to back those up. Call or email some of your analysts and top holders to find out what they would most like to hear about and the specifics they would like to see covered.
2. Establish a theme. Make your event more memorable by giving it a short but catchy title that conveys the overall message you want to deliver. Perhaps your theme can be based on business expansion, new product development, or market leadership. Tie your theme to the headline you would like to see in print.
3. People remember stories. Create impact through story telling. For example, you can do this by walking investors through a case study that tells the history of the problem and the story of the solution. For example, you might share your experiences surrounding the successful integration of an important acquisition to create an emotional connection with your audience. Better yet, bring in a customer to share their story on how you joined forces to create a successful outcome, or an industry expert to share insights on topics that are relevant to your business or sector.
4. Bring the team. Investors and analysts love events where they have access to team members beyond the C suite and can interact with them informally during meals or before or after the event. They like putting a face to a name they already know and relish a fresh perspective from those on the front line. Since many executives have never faced an analyst’s inquiry, it’s very important to educate them about what the investor audience cares about and the types of questions they can expect. Also make certain they understand the basic rules of Regulation FD. Rehearse all the presenters well in advance and if they need formal presentation training, make the investment.
5. Time it right. Based on a survey we conducted, investors and analysts prefer no more than a half day event. And don’t begin too early – starting at 9:30 or 10:00 a.m. allows locals to be at their desks a bit ahead of the event and gives travelers extra time to get to their destination. If you have something interesting to show investors, you can hold an optional site or plant tour following the event. For an afternoon event, consider closing the day with a group reception or a special dinner for top holders. Along with timing it right, make certain all the details are buttoned down. Surveys have shown that poorly executed logistics are just as memorable as the content of the presenters.
Given the time, effort and money spent on Investor & Analyst Days, it is critical to make sure that the event is productive for both the company and the guests. Make it a great day!