Good and consistent investor relationship is critical. There are several elements of investor relationships. Investor relations is far more than sending our a quarterly piece of formal communications. Investor relations is building, cultivating, and investing in a mutually beneficial relationship. Investors are part of your company's community.
Investors are your Partners
Investors are your business partners. They have put their money to work in your business. You are accountable to them to judiciously use their money to increase the value of your business.
The bottom line is that what will keep them happy is an increased value of your business -- and thus their investment. To that ends what you need to communicate with them is the good news, the bad news, and the tracking metrics the demonstrate the movement along your business plan.
Include investors on your press list. Call them before the news hits of a "big win" Include them on the "key supports" list to receive critical break through information. Make sure if they are twitter followers, or Google_ circle readers that they are following/reading you! You never want them to feel out of the loop. You never want them to have the experience where your investor learns on the golf course you just secured a contract with Microsoft.
Bad news will happen. It's a startup. It is part of the journey. The investors knows that. Nothing will build their trust and your social capital with them, like open and transparent communication of bad news too. You don't want them to learn on the gold course that the company they invested in just lost a contract with Microsoft either.
Official Shareholder Written Communications
Factual. Simply. Clear. Regular. And approved by counsel. Part of the investor relationship platform -- not the be all.
Don't Stop at Written
Conference calls, webinars, direct calls, meetings. There are lots of means and modes to communicate -- to establish and build your relationship.
Investors are Unique
Each investor is unque. There is a "personality" of the money for the business. Some want to talk once a week. Others want a report once a quarter. Some want to ask questions, some will read -- others just want to know the communication channel is open. Don't push everyone into the same box.
Engage Investors for more than Money
Many investors are also wise, experienced, skilled with great networks. You received not only their money-- but their attention. Respect their valuable time, but nothing keeps someone engaged like not only being solicited for advice -- but the entrepreneur that actually considers and takes the advice. this too is part of health investor relations.
Last but not least -- don't forget the legal requirements. If you owe a year end K1 -- you better have it out on time. Don't ever let the little things get in the way -- take care of them on time. .