By Mike Houston, Managing Partner, Capital Markets
The public markets have been very active the past two years. As of October 2021, the NYSE had a combined total of 2,434 listed domestic and international companies, while the Nasdaq had a much higher 3,566, according to Statista. With more than 6,000 publicly traded companies listed today between the two largest exchanges, a growing number of them went public via a SPAC.
Whether you went public through a traditional IPO or a SPAC, each are listed on major exchanges and investors can freely trade the shares. What’s different is that the structure of SPACs has allowed younger companies to tap into the public markets without the same level of scrutiny necessary for traditional IPOs. Due to some recent and very public failures of companies that went public through a SPAC, it is critical that SPAC listed companies focus on the key investor relations fundamentals to ensure support and liquidity for their shares. The following five tactics are important to a company’s long-term success in the public markets.
- Perception Study. To truly understand your current positioning amongst investors and research analysts, it’s important to conduct investment community interviews to address the key topics of interest to the management team. This will also provide an opportunity for investors and analysts to identify additional areas of concern. Once the interviews are completed, the data insights are then compiled and analyzed, providing a statistical snapshot of target areas of concern to investors that may be used to prioritize future efforts. Perception studies are a great way to obtain a detailed summary of the most relevant and insightful investor comments, as well as actionable recommendations that improve investor communication by bridging gaps in understanding, providing a roadmap for growing shareholder value, and factoring in nuances to build a stronger story that more fully resonates with investors.
- Institutional Investor Targeting & Outreach. The pandemic has turned institutional investor marketing efforts upside down. There are now many more virtual options to connect with current and prospective investors. Setting up investor and analyst meetings now require new and unique approaches to capture the attention of the investment community. Typically, quarterly 13F SEC filing analysis of industry asset rotations, fund-level purchasing power and peer group purchasing power provided all the data necessary to target and contact prospects. Due to the increasing number of public companies, regular outreach to covering and non-covering institutional sales desks may also be necessary to generate awareness and engagement. Regardless your current level of research analyst coverage, supplementing NDR and investor conference schedules with additional outreach and meeting generation is key to a successful day of meetings.
- Retail Investor Marketing. With approximately 130 million individual investors in the U.S. representing more than $17 trillion in self-directed assets, this group is extremely important to connect with but often overlooked due to the difficulty in verifying who they are and how many shares they hold. Because individual investors tend to buy what they know, services such as TiiCKER can help you connect with that untapped affinity group – your owners. Leveraging a shareholder loyalty platform to verify, engage and reward your everyday investors will allow you to connect with them on a more meaningful level and market directly to them. This will allow you to build your retail investor community, stand out among your peers, and build brand exposure to an audience that matters most to you.
- Messaging & Preparation for Quarterly Earnings. Message development each quarter can help to unlock additional value as you refine the investment thesis to address the investment community perceptions and expectations. Creating a powerful impression as you prepare for your next earnings call is critical and can be accomplished by illuminating your company’s successes, its strong financial future, and the C-suite of visionaries behind the brand. Even in times of crisis or economic recession, focusing on the power of a strategic communications approach should always be a top priority.
- Investor Conferences and Events. Analyst days, investor conferences and non-deal roadshows can be opportunities to highlight your investment thesis in a creative way. While choosing an appropriate venue is often the first of many decisions, it’s also important to develop a tiered list of targeted analysts and buy-side investors to optimize financial community attendance. Proactive outreach to the financial community to gauge interest in attendance while also gaining insight to aid in the development of event theme and Q&A topics is another important task to consider. Lastly, don’t forget the follow-up! Keep the dialogue going after that initial meeting to ensure the audience understands your investor narrative and appreciates the value it can provide.
Have you recently gone public via a SPAC transaction and need an experienced guide? It’s time to reach out and connect with us to discuss how best to unlock your company’s valuation.