Category Archives: Socialize IR

Time to Revamp the Quarterly Earnings Call?

By Dennis Walsh, Vice President & Director of Social Media

And the Award for Best Quarterly Earnings Results Conference Call goes to….

awardGiving awards to recognize production of an earnings call may be a little premature, but several companies are spicing up what is generally considered an uneventful quarterly ritual by the investment community.  It is encouraging to see companies embracing the use of new technologies and social media for investor relations. Before you follow their lead, we can’t forget what is truly important to our key stakeholders about the process: transparency and access to management.

So what is all the fuss about? Continue reading

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SEC Gives Social Media for IR Its Blessing

By Dennis Walsh, Vice President & Director of Social Media

The SEC finally has provided guidance on the use of social media for investor relations. The guidance came in a report on its investigation to determine whether Netflix CEO Reed Hasting had violated Reg FD. In a Facebook status update on his personal account, Hastings said Netflix had streamed 1 billion hours of content in June 2012, calling into question whether the post was selective disclosure of material information. 

In its report, the SEC clarified that companies can use social media outlets like Facebook and Twitter to announce key information in compliance with Reg FD. It’s the moment we’ve all been waiting for, but with some key caveats. Continue reading

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Preparing for a Social Media Crisis

By David Calusdian, Executive Vice President & Partner

I recently participated as the designated “social media expert” as part of a crisis communications case study session at the 2012 NIRI Southwest regional conference.  This year’s conference was held in New Orleans and the session centered on a fictitious publicly held bead manufacturing company (apropos for the conference host city) that found itself suddenly facing a major environmental crisis. During the true-to-life exercise, attendees took on the roles of the company’s corporate communications officers and were tasked with implementing all aspects of the crisis response plan.

In their new roles, the attendees had to make a number of decisions relating to the immediate actions of the fictitious company, “Beignet Beads & Baubles.”  For example, should the company proceed with a press conference with the governor announcing a state grant that afternoon?  Should management go forward with a scheduled presentation at a major investor conference in New York the next day?  Should a planned announcement of a major plant expansion be delayed? As typically happens with a real crisis, the Beignet Beads & Baubles “crisis team-for-a-day” was given an increasing amount of information to complicate their decision-making process.  Continue reading

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Social Media + Investor Relations = Socialize IR

By Dennis Walsh, Senior Consultant & Direct of Social Media

Let’s face it; you can’t ignore social media any longer…even as part of your investor relations strategy.    You were hoping Facebook would go the way of MySpace and Friendster, but it keeps on growing and has even made its way into our world with its initial public offering. 

Talk of Twitter used to elicit laughter in the board room. Now, competitors are using it to promote their brand; hedge funds are using it to decide when to make trades; and rumors spread like wildfires over the Twittersphere.  Twitter companion site StockTwits has evolved as a popular platform for traders to share investment ideas.  Add to that: YouTube, Flickr, SlideShare, LinkedIn, oh my!  IR pros certainly put up a good fight, but it’s time to embrace social media…it’s here to stay. 

Feeling a little overwhelmed? We’d like to help you with that. Continue reading

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Why Every Company Needs a Social Media Policy

By Dennis Walsh, Senior Consultant & Director of Social Media

On Monday, Houston-based Francesca’s Holdings Corporation (NASDAQ: FRAN) announced that it had fired its chief financial officer, Gene Morphis, after discovering he had “improperly communicated Company information through social media.”  This case highlights how important it is for all companies to have a clear social media policy in place and to educate top executives on their roles and responsibilities as company spokespeople.

Mr. Morphis was very active on Twitter, publishes a personal blog, and has public profiles on LinkedIn and Facebook.  Mr. Morphis spoke freely about his duties as CFO of Francesca’s in his Facebook status updates, which were open for public viewing.  In one example he states that he just completed a roadshow for a secondary offering, which appears to have been announced via press release prior to the post. Continue reading

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Filed under Investor Relations, Social Media, Socialize IR