Social Media vs Investor Relations

This post (from IR WebReport – thanks to them, looks like a good site) just underlines for me everything that’s so, so wrong about the use of social media for commercial purposes.

It’s basically an examination of companies with Twitter feeds (or streams or whatever you call them) and how they use them to communicate results announcements. The author expresses some surprise and irritation that some of these benighted corporates fail to announce their results on Twitter at the same time as they do through other (dare I say it) more traditional media.

To which I have two reactions:

  • Of course they’re not using Twitter in the same way that they’re using other, more traditional, channels. Twitter is a gimmick. Oh – and 140 characters doesn’t leave much room for the Chairman’s statement
  • No serious analyst is relying on Twitter as his/her sole source of information about the companies on his/her beat. Those that are, I would suggest, are not looking at glittering careers

Twitter. Useless. Get over it.

Oh. And stop trying to shoehorn Twitter (or any social medium) into areas where it simply a) doesn’t work and b) isn’t relevant.


2 thoughts on “Social Media vs Investor Relations

  1. For individual investors and others who aren’t able to spend $2000 per month for a professional terminal that will give them immediate access to company news releases, Twitter is a major advancement.

    It’s the fastest way to get breaking news about company earnings because professional traders with Bloomberg terminals on their desks like to tweet the news to their buddies on Twitter. If you want to get the news before it arrives on Yahoo! Finance, you go to StockTwits. In that sense, Twitter is an extremely valuable and democratizing technology.

    Now, instead of me having to get the news from @anonymoustrader would it kill the company to Tweet the information simultaneously to releasing it via a PR wire? No it wouldn’t.

    • A fair point – if Twitter is regarded as simply one of a basket of channels through which to get information, and not the only one. Individual investors have always seemed to manage in the past – and they may well have to in the future when Twitter is replaced with something else, even more wholly unsuited to the business of IR.

      Just my tuppence worth.

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