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NIRI and Corbin Perception Release Studies of Social Media Use in Corporate Investor Communications at 2013 NIRI Annual Conference

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NEWS RELEASE
June 10, 2013

NIRI and Corbin Perception Release Studies of Social Media Use in Corporate Investor Communications at 2013 NIRI Annual Conference

NIRI Study Finds Most Not Using Social Media for Investor Relations Programs

Corbin Perception Research Finds Social Media Information Widely Gathered But Of Questionable Perceived Reliability and Not A Major Factor in Buy Side Investment Decisions


HOLLYWOOD, Fla. – The National Investor Relations Institute (NIRI) and Corbin Perception Group, LLC today announced the results of their surveys into the use of social media by corporate investor relations officers (IROs) and the institutional investor community.

NIRI inquired about investor relations (IR) social media use (where the investment community is the primary audience), the recent SEC announcement concerning social media use for corporate disclosure, broad corporate policy concerning social media, and organizational staff changes as a result of social media.

Key Findings – Social Media Use by Corporate Investor Relations Officers

  • The majority of survey respondent IR professionals (72%) do not use social media for their IR work. 
  • Consistent with the results of NIRI’s 2010 social media study, respondents report not using social media for IR primarily due to lack of interest by the investment community. 
  • Almost half (49%) who do not currently use social media in their IR program plan to reassess the issue within the next 12 months.

In an effort to objectively evaluate how the buy side consumes social media, defined as financial blogs, message boards and social networking sites, Corbin Perception surveyed 87 global buy side professionals across a diverse set of industry segments and market-caps on the impact social media has on their investment process.

Key Findings – Social Media Use by Institutional Investors

  • 52% of survey contributors utilize social media as part of their research process, a slightly smaller number than 2010 levels of 56%; the vast majority of these respondents indicates that it has influenced their investment decisions at least occasionally 
  • Interestingly and somewhat concerning, 92% consider the information gleaned from social media sites as either somewhat or not at all reliable 
    • According to the entire survey group, it is the lowest rated information source in terms of influence 
  • In light of the SEC's decision to grant credibility to postings on sites such as Facebook and Twitter, 43% assert they will likely utilize social media more as part of their research process 
  • Financial blogs, including Seeking Alpha, as well as LinkedIn and Twitter are viewed as the most valuable social media resources; only 25% find company-sponsored blogs useful

NIRI President and CEO Jeffrey D. Morgan said, “The timing of NIRI’s survey was ideal as it was conducted one month after the SEC’s announcement that companies may use social media to disclose key information after alerting investors about which social media will be used. Companies will obviously choose the methods that best meet the communications needs of their constituents, but important in making an informed decision is an understanding of the current state of IR practice provided by these survey results.”

2013 NIRI Annual Conference On-Site Research Sponsor and President of Corbin Perception, Rebecca Corbin said, “For the second year in a row, we are honored to sponsor NIRI's research on topical IR issues, and social media certainly fits that credential. Our objective research finds that although this information is of questionable perceived reliability, it can play a role in the investment decision process. This underscores the need for IR professionals to closely monitor company-specific social media content.”

The survey results were released today in Hollywood, Florida, at the 2013 NIRI Annual Conference, the world’s most comprehensive investor relations education and networking event. For more information about the Conference, please visit: www.niri.org/conference.

About the National Investor Relations Institute (NIRI)
Founded in 1969, NIRI is the professional association of corporate officers and investor relations consultants responsible for communication among corporate management, shareholders, securities analysts and other financial community constituents. NIRI is the largest professional investor relations association in the world with more than 3,300 members representing over 1,600 publicly held companies and $9 trillion in stock market capitalization.

About Corbin Perception
Corbin Perception is an IR research and advisory firm assisting public companies with driving long-term shareholder value. Core advisory services include Perception Studies, Investor Targeting, Investor Presentations, Investor Days, IR Diagnostic Reviews and Retainer Consulting. Corbin Perception’s research has been published in WSJ's MarketWatch, Bloomberg's Businessweek, CNBC.com and others.

NIRI Contact
Matt Brusch
(703) 562-7679
mbrusch@niri.org

Corbin Perception Contact
Bronwyn Swanson
203-283-7997
bronwyn.swanson@corbinperception.com
www.corbinperception.com

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