As reported earlier in Advice from Swedish IR pioneers in Social Media: ”Keep it simple” Sculptor IR’s and Box IR’s mapping of 374 Nordic mid and large cap companies use of social media for IR revealed that Twitter and Facebook were the most popular social media channels. That only 6 % of the companies have corporate blogs is not that surprising as mostly IROs often are fraught by the disclosure risk.
When analysing the content of these blogs we only found one blog that also provided IR-content. Veidekke’s, (a Norwegian construction company) blog Terjes Tanker (Terje’s thoughts) is named after the CEO Terje Venold and he is also one of the most frequent authors. The blog is very easy to find as it has a direct link from the corporate website. The blog started in February 2009 and includes posts where the CEO comments the Annual Report, the development of the housing market, the Q2 results etc.
At an initial stage I agree that a corporate blog dedicated to IR demands both time and commitment. You need to set up a blog team and educate the persons that are going to be authors, decide content etc. By creating a social media policy that includes guidelines for disclosures you will address the legal issues.
But, once the education is done and the blog has started your IR blog can be a great context provider and time saver for the IR-team by including posts as for example:
- Macro perspective on the industry
- Summarising the most frequently asked question from the latest Quarterly Presentation
- Providing a greater context about business areas and key metrics
- CEO commenting in the Annual Report
- Summarising the latest roadshow from a industry perspective
The main purpose with the IR blog is not to publish or say anything that you would not say in an investor meeting or in an interview. A blog should instead be used to explain published figures and strategies, helping the analysts and investors to understand your business and financial triggers. With this approach the IR blog will be a great context provider and time saver for the IR-team, providing low legal risk.