Since 2010, I’ve hosted hundreds of CEOs at VirtualInvestorConferences.com, our monthly “digital roadshow platform,” connecting these CEOs and their senior executives directly to a pool of over 40,000 institutional and individual investors.
~~~FYI: Our next conference is a special two-day event, Oct 4 – 5, partnered with the OTC Markets. (check this out here) ~~~
Watching all these presentations, I have witnessed, first-hand, the best and the worst online presentations. From that, I have pulled together the key thoughts and strategies to place your company in the best ONLINE light.
That word – ONLINE – is the point of this discussion. Although, per RegFD, the material content that you present to a physical audience is no different than what you will present at a virtual audience, how you present is very different.
- Your virtual audience will leave the very moment they lose interest – it’s a web-mentality
- Your virtual audience is surrounded by distraction
- Your virtual audience have small screens
- Your virtual audience is immune to your CEO’s “in-room presence”
Here are a few points that may guide your success. To be exact, virtual presentations are live, audio and slide webcasts with “presenter controlled” slide advancement. Online audience members can type and submit questions.
1.) Get a PROFESSIONAL photographer to make a head shot of you / CEO / presenting executives.
All virtual investor conferences (not just ours) request a speaker photo. Don’t use a cropped snapshot. Don’t use an iPhone and “go stand next to that wall.”
Spend the short money. Go to Sears. Go to JC Penny’s. You must do this.
Be cognizant that this is the only image of your presenter the audience will have. Ask yourself, “is that the face of trust?” The face people will give their money to?
2.) Unless your speakerphone is very, very expensive (or you do not have opposable thumbs) pick up and use the phone’s handset.
Objectively, it always assures the sound quality. Subjectively, it allows the presenter to relax and just “talk normal” and your INVESTORS. DO. NOT. HAVE. TO. LISTEN. TO. THAT. ANNOYING. SPEAKERPHONE. SHOUTING. TONE.
3.) The competition is not a peer in your sector; it’s that cute cat video on YouTube.
Get to the point quickly with a concise, 15 minute presentation. At a physical event, companies have the luxury of trapping investors in a room… not so with a virtual event. Also, use plain English.
4.) Simplify your slides’ visuals.
All webcast platforms shrink your slides down – plus we now have the scale of mobile tablets to think about. Nothing smaller than 24pt font size. Detailed photos, like aerials maps, will be illegible. Crop in to the key point you want to make. No snazzy slide transitions.
5.) Speak sloooooooowly.
Although you are on the phone, try to keep the pace of a live presentation. We all tend to talk fast on the phone.
6.) For retail investors, deliver the most important message first.
“Yes, we offer dividends.” Asking about dividends is the #1 question asked at VirtualInvestorConferences.com.
7.) You may need to seed the Q&A with a couple of your own questions. Live or online, getting over that first question hump is important. Don’t, however, throw a softball – use a real question from your recent earnings call. The goal is not to “fool anyone,” just to get the dialog going.
AND THE MOST IMPORTANT TIP
8.) Rehearse the presentation on your company’s WebEx type account to non-technical and non-financial people. This will amplify the pros and cons from the points above.
PS: For VERY detailed insight into the minds of your investors, request our “How do investors consume investor relations content” study. Free here.