As more aspects of our everyday lives go online, both professionally and recreationally, it makes sense to embrace a virtual Capital Markets Day (CMD). Communicating over the internet is a natural occurrence for us today and the technology now exists to make it accessible and valuable.
Many companies are already leading the way by taking their CMDs online. Here are two examples:
- Bpost – the Belgian postal group had 26 people physically attend a recent CMD, with a further 166 watching online.
- Aalberts NV – The Dutch manufacturer had approximately 60 people physically present at their CMD, with 354 online webcast viewers. This meant they reached around 70% of their total target group of approximately 500 (potential) investors.
Read this article to find out the benefits of holding a virtual Capital Markets Day, the different formats available and how to organise a successful online CMD.
Why organise a virtual Capital Markets Day?
There are a host of benefits to organising a virtual Capital Markets Day but here are the most important ones.
By offering the chance for investors, analysts, journalists and employees to watch the Capital Markets Day event online, you can reach more people than with an in-person event. Attendees don’t have to take time off work, travel to the event or book accommodation. They can access the webcast at home, in the office or anywhere else they like. If they don’t catch the presentations live, they can watch them on-demand later to view the video in their own time.
At Company Webcast, we have found that the average CMD event was attended in-person by 43 people, with 411 online viewers. Taking into account the proportions of analysts, current investors and potential investors (as opposed to employees), within both types of audiences, we found that a webcast reached 4.2 times more of these key attendees than a solely in-person event would have.
Improved global reach
Not only can a virtual CMD help reach more people within your home country, but it can also increase your reach across the world. Our recent research found that this helps spread your message beyond country borders and is one of the reasons why 95% of CMDs are held in English.
A webcast maximises the ROI of your CMD as it exposes more potential investors to your IR message.
Reveal more about the business
Your investors may have access to your CFO and CEO at roadshows and other events, but the CMD is the opportunity to introduce them to more members of your management team who can pass on relevant information about their roles and projects.
Steps to organise virtual Capital Markets Days
1. Choose the format
There are three different ways to create a virtual Capital Markets Day. You should choose the format that works best for you and the individual requirements of your organisation. Here are the options:
- On-demand only: The CMD takes place at a venue during the day and the video of the event goes online afterwards. This allows more people to find out what happens, but they have to wait until after the physical attendees have heard the update before receiving the information themselves.
- Online only: The CMD is held at a location of the organisation’s choosing, usually their premises. If you’re using Company Webcast, the event can also be streamed from one of our state-of-the-art studios, with attendees joining remotely.
- Hybrid: The CMD is held at a specific venue where investors and analysts can attend in person. There is also a live webcast of the event that people can access remotely at the time. Furthermore, attendees can catch up on the event at a later date if they wish.
2. Decide on the structure of the event
A CMD is your opportunity to detail your strategy, show investors and potential investors how you will add value to their shareholding and allow them to meet management figures that they might not otherwise get to know at other events.
You should carefully pick which information you want to share, who will speak and if there is a theme you would like to explore for the event. Considering the increasing interest in ESG, you might want to concentrate on this topic and how it relates to your future decision making, for instance.
You might have, for example, a section where you analyse recent performance, another to discuss goals and targets, and yet another to go over the strategy for achieving them. You should also allow time for questions and answers so your online audience can interact with you.
3. Inviting analysts and investors
It goes without saying that you should invite analysts and investors to join your CMD. Send them your invitation, detailing when the event will take place and how to access it, whether that is physically or virtually.
Make sure you give them an idea of the content of the presentations that will take place on the day of the event, as well as the theme or message that you want to promote during the event. You should also add details of how they can sign up to attend either the in-person event or online.
Send this information out to the analysts and investors you are targeting or want to engage. It’s also a great idea to post it on your website and social media for others to find.
4. Make registration easy
The Capital Markets Day is your opportunity to present your story, successes and strategies to your current and potential shareholders as well as to sell-side analysts. The platform you use for your virtual CMD should be easy to use and register with so that you can engage as many people as possible.
5. Issue a press release
You can explore the main points of the CMD in a press release that you issue just before the event. It tells the media more about what you are going to discuss and announce in the presentation, pulling out the most noteworthy points and highlighting them.
It’s a good idea to include quotes from relevant members of your team to help journalists add colour to their stories. You can also provide access to the webcast for the press so that they can find out more from the presentation itself and ask questions to clarify any points.
Send this to all the relevant journalists in your industry’s press to make sure you have the best chance of earning coverage for your event.
6. Measure the impact
The final step is to evaluate the effect of your online Capital Markets Day. Was it a success? Was the audience able to actively participate? Did the virtual event have a positive effect on analysts’ perceptions? Were more investors attracted?
There are many questions to ask at this point and answering them depends entirely on the solution you have chosen.
If you are using Company Webcast, you have access to Euronext’s proprietary data, which makes it easy to see the big picture. Besides the usual attendance statistics, you can also measure your company’s market performance and analyse market participants following your virtual CMD or any other digital investor relations activities.
Best practices for virtual Capital Markets Days
Choose the right topics for discussion
There are many topics that you will want to present to your audience on your investor day, including those areas in which you are excelling. But you should also consider what investors are interested in and what concerns them about the issuers they buy shares from.
Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance (ESG) matters are high in the minds of many investors. So much so that the world’s largest asset manager, BlackRock, is actively voting against or threatening to vote against directors of issuers it says have failed to address climate change adequately. Executive compensation is also high on the list of topics investors are interested in.
Research what matters to your targeted shareholders across all of the different territories and be sure to focus on that during the CMD.
Prepare and rehearse
A fully virtual event means your presenters are not in the same room as the audience, but they still need to prepare to the best of their ability. If anything, the Q&A section of the webcast can be more active, meaning there is more opportunity for them to be wrongfooted by a question out of leftfield. This is why it’s important to rehearse and explore the questions attendees could potentially ask.
It’s equally important to check if your hardware and software are working properly. A rehearsal allows you to work out the optimum camera angles, ensure the best sound and make the lighting perfect. Besides, the presenters might not be used to the technology at hand during a virtual Capital Markets Day, so running through the event will help ease their worries.
Remember the branding
“Companies holding virtual capital markets days need to think like TV show producers to keep the audience engaged.” — Vladimir Zaluzhsky, Head of Communications and IR, Severstal
Your brand will be in the spotlight and you need to make sure everything that happens during the CMD fits in with your corporate image. This includes having consistency with the backgrounds that you use for each speaker and displaying your company logo on the screen.
This is why Company Webcast’s studios come with a green screen. You can overlay any colour or image you like, as well as take advantage of our professional sound, lighting and crew.
Holding a virtual Capital Markets Day is a great way to share your story and vision with your retail investors, institutional investors and analysts. It provides the opportunity to reach more people because the attendees don’t have to book annual leave, travel to the event or find accommodation.
Our experience shows that more and more companies are choosing to webcast their CMD or transform it into a hybrid event. This way, they can get more of the important people to watch their proceedings live and re-watch the recorded stream later. But, most of all, they are able to increase their reach beyond country borders, build trust in their brand and solidify their presence on the international market.
If you want to learn more about the possibilities that a virtual Capital Markets Day could bring, request a demo of Company Webcast’s platform.