Retail trading may not be making headlines like it did in 2021, when Redditors inspired millions of people to put the short squeeze on GameStop. But that doesn’t mean it’s time to turn your IR strategy on this influential part of the market.
According to April’s Security Traders Association of New York annual conference and its panel on “How Retail is Changing Equity Market Structure,” retail trading represents 18% of all trading activity.
While this data indicates a slight dip from 2021’s peak, these numbers are higher than they were before the pandemic. More still, experts forecast retail activity to hold at this level for the time being.
In this new normal, IROs would do well to proactively target retail investors to control the potential impact they might have on your IPO or publicly traded company.
Why Increasing Engagement Relies on Digital IR Tools
Retail investors are tech-savvy individuals, many of them Millennials and older Gen-Zers, who are just as likely to check social media as your investor relations website for information on your stock opportunity.
With this in mind, the investor relations experts at Q4 recommend updating your approach to retail communications on a virtual front. The people behind Q4 web systems developed a list of best practices for managing different types of investors, so it’s advice worth following.
3 Ways to Strengthen Communication
The number one piece of Q4 advice is making sure your content is accessible to retail shareholders. At the very least, you need to revisit the following three areas of your strategy:
1. Social Media
You need to cultivate a strong presence on social media. Twitter, in particular, is the place where you want to be. Focus on sharing digestible quotes from webcasts and press releases and supporting them with infographics.
In all the rush to publish engaging content, don’t overlook Twitter as a measurement of your audience. You can spy on market conversations happening about your company by tracking your hashtag.
2. Accessible Investor Relations Website
Your social media accounts and IR website should have a symbiotic relationship. Browsers should be able to find a Twitter badge that directs them to your account, and your posts should include links that redirect them to your site.
You may also consider adding a Twitter timeline widget to cut out all that redirecting. This widget makes it possible for them to follow or retweet from your account without ever leaving your site.
More to the point, the content on your website should be accessible to a retail audience. Make sure to post information that’s usually hidden behind a Bloomberg terminal, including capital market events transcripts, webinar links, and up-to-date event pages.
3. Capital Markets Virtual Events
As COVID-19 restrictions lift in many parts of the world, you might facilitate a slow return to in-person conferences. However, you’ll want to maintain at least a hybrid of virtual and in-person events for the time being.
While institutional investors can follow you anywhere, retail shareholders aren’t as mobile. They likely have 9–5 jobs that may make attending the biggest capital markets events impossible. Hybrid investor conferences make it easier for retail audiences to attend these events virtually.
By partnering with the top webcasting services, you’ll have a platform tailored for the capital markets and exceed expectations surrounding virtual meeting formats.
Individual traders aren’t a pandemic phenomenon; many of them are doubling down as restrictions lift. With experts forecasting their continued presence in the markets, update your IR tools and messaging to get in front of your retail audience.