Those high stakes bring high pressure for corporate communications professionals. Even before distribution, there’s a lot to manage. You’ll need to coordinate with stakeholders in both IR and PR to gather information, collaborate on how best to present your news and shape the resulting conversation. (Click to share!)
A small mistake, misstatement or missing piece of information can result in negative media attention or, critically, an adverse impact to stock trading. So be sure to confirm with those involved that you have all of the required elements before you hit send.
Preparing Your Earnings Release
While you’re wrangling the data and crafting your message, don’t forget to take a few minutes to check off the necessities. Doing so will ensure you meet disclosure requirements and make your release easy to understand.
Now that your release is ready, it’s time to share it simultaneously with the media, investors and public. The most efficient and effective way to do that is through wire distribution.
Submitting Your Earnings Release over the Wire:
1. Prepare and send editable files to your wire service. These should be in Word, Excel or HTML file formats. This allows editors to format your content for accurate distribution.
2. Pick your distribution. Make sure you’re sending to a full “wire” newsline that includes financial journalists as well as online points. Choose a distribution strategy that satisfies your company’s disclosure policy in context to Reg FD.
3. Give yourself – and your wire service – enough time. Select a distribution time during the upload process, or let editors know when you plan to distribute. And be sure to build in time for your own internal review, too. (Click to share!)
4. Request a proof copy for review. Gather stakeholders to review the earnings proof copy in advance of approval/distribution, as a final confirmation before delivery.
5. Notify your stock exchange, if necessary. NYSE requires 10 minutes’ advance notice of material news being announced between 7 a.m. and 4 p.m. ET; Nasdaq has the same requirements between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m. ET. (Click to share!)
6. Give your wire provider the go-ahead, with clear timing instructions.
7. Coordinate your 8-K to be simultaneously filed with the SEC. By checking off each of these steps in advance of distributing your earnings release, you’ll ensure your audiences are receiving the full story, accurately and on time.
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