Getting media coverage is an efficient way for IR teams to reach large numbers of investors, and indirectly shape the investment narrative around the company. In this post we will discuss how to develop and deliver your investment story.
Is a proactive media approach right for your company?
First, regardless of your media approach, you must assume that all IR materials and calls will reach the media, so you should not write nor say anything in IR that you do not want to be potentially read in a newspaper or social media. That said, taking a more proactive approach to media relations has its pros and cons, which you should consider for your company’s particular situation.
- It is much cheaper than advertising.
- It has a large reach and influence.
- Articles by reputable journalists/outlets are taken more seriously/trusted than company paid advertisements.
- Dynamic media communications show that management teams are confident in their business plan.
- Presence in the press can have other positive effects for your company such as strengthening your brand, reaching clients.
- It can positively impact market valuation over time.
- It is hard to control exactly what reporters say, because the information you present to them will be combined with independent research.
- A poorly prepared pitch could backfire and turn into negative coverage.
- It could lead to unintended distribution of mixed messages to investors if you don’t have an IR Disclosure Policy.
- The media dislikes propaganda and often like to disclose what people and companies do not want to be written (a definition of news). Expect a negative bias.
Unify messaging between PR and IR teams
To have unified and consistent corporate communications, IR and PR teams must be coordinated. However, in many companies, IR and PR teams are siloed. IR assumes that PR is purely external marketing, and PR can lack the financial acumen that it feels it needs to get involved in IR. In reality, both teams are communicating the company’s message to the public (including investors and analysts) and should work together.
There are many situations where the two areas can collaborate, for example: How did the media cover quarterly earnings results? What is being said on Twitter about rumored manufacturing delays? El Financiero wants to do an interview about a recent downgrade, should we respond?
One way to help PR and IR teams to work together is to make sure to have a coordinated events calendar with earnings, annual meetings, industry conferences, non-deal roadshows, and expected business announcements. Also, have periodical coordination check-ins so that the teams can align on messaging.
We recommend that all IR and PR releases are shown to each area before publication.
Crafting and pitching your story
If your company is new to media relations, begin with smaller and more industry focused media outlets, columns, or blogs. For example, Minería en Línea for mining or Aviación 21 for airlines. From there you can work your way up to more influential news outlets as you feel more confident with your messaging. This provides good practice and tests the media’s appetite for your investment story.
Your story must be compelling and headline worthy. Journalists are inundated with pitches, so be sure to be concise and get to the punchline in the first few sentences. You will catch the journalists’ attention and increase your likelihood of getting published. When developing your story, make sure to provide something of value, such as an innovative business lesson. Think about interesting insights you can provide to the reporter, an example could be how your company in the food industry handled the food labeling (“alto en sodio”, “alto en calorías”, etc) imposed by the government.
IR and PR teams should be on the same page regarding the story. Pitching takes training and rehearsal to prepare management for possible questions and reactions. This preparation includes making sure to be consistent with previous coverage and knowing how your story could potentially be misinterpreted.
Working with a media agency could be a good idea for companies that don’t have a dedicated PR team. Agencies have close relationships with journalists, know what interests them, and how to articulate your story in a compelling way.
How Miranda can help
Miranda IR and Miranda Media are available for all of your IR and media relations needs. Miranda Media focuses on financial corporate communications and works with all major Mexican outlets on a daily basis. We can help craft and pitch a successful campaign to increase your company’s visibility.
Contacts at Miranda Partners