Virtually Ahead of the Curve
In March of 2020 when the country was shutting down around us, I started hoarding toilet paper thinking about how the world was changing and how this is going to affect all of our clients. With in-person conferences being canceled and roadshows coming to a halt, a major tool in the “tool belt” of investor relations was abruptly taken away from us. That didn’t mean the appetite from investors went down, or that our clients stopped running their businesses and announcing news. Now, more than ever, we needed a way to facilitate meaningful shareholder communications in the midst of a global pandemic.
So we went to the drawing board to see what worked in the past and what could work going forward, because it quickly became apparent to us that people weren’t traveling and networking any time soon. This is where our experience with virtual conferences came in handy.
Back in August of 2017, as we were looking for additional retail oriented events, we partnered with PRNewswire (now Cision) on a virtual conference for a number of our cannabis clients. To be honest, I was hoping to get 500 investors to listen in to that event. At the end of the day, we had more than 2,500 investors listen to six 30-minute company presentations. We were very happy with the results considering it was our first virtual conference “rodeo.”
With the global pandemic in full force last April, we decided to put together a cannabis/psychedelics conference on April 20th. (Yeah, yeah, I know 4/20…. it just happened to work out that way <wink>). Given the short time frame, we were able to get 11 companies to participate and more than 5,000 investors to view the presentations. With the ongoing uncertainty of in-person events moving into 2021, virtual conferences will continue to be the venue of choice as companies seek additional investor awareness.
Since that first event, the OTC Markets has taken over for PRNewswire and we are hosting retail focused events with them three times per year (January, June and September). Participating companies from the OTC, NASDAQ, TSX, CSE and NEO exchanges are averaging anywhere from 100 to 2,000 investors per presentation. Each virtual conference we have hosted has been averaging anywhere from 4,000 to 15,000 total investors in attendance. Not a bad return on investment considering its only a fraction of the cost to participate compared to an in-person conference.
This Thursday, January 7 will be our 12th virtual cannabis conference that we have hosted since we started back in 2017. If you are interested in listening to 13 cannabis companies tell their compelling stories, feel free to visit the conference website at https://www.virtualinvestorconferences.com/events/event-details/kcsa-cannabis-investor-conference-1
P.S. stay tuned for our virtual psychedelics conference coming up on January 26th and 27th.