Eighty percent of Limited Partners say they can’t easily find useful, relevant information about General Partners and their team members online, although only six percent of GPs recognise how hard it can be, according to The GP Stakeholder Communications Survey. The GP Stakeholder Communications Survey examines how private equity and venture capital firms communicate and how this impacts on the perceptions and behaviour of key stakeholders (limited partners, business owners, corporate finance advisors, journalists).
80% of Limited Partners say they can’t easily find useful, relevant information about General Partners (GPs) and their team members online, although only 6% of GPs recognise how hard it can be, according to The GP Stakeholder Communications Survey.
The GP Stakeholder Communications Survey – examines how private equity and venture capital firms communicate and how this impacts on the perceptions and behaviour of key stakeholders (limited partners, business owners, corporate finance advisors, journalists). More than 500 GPs and their stakeholders gave their views and Pivot Partners reviewed the websites and social media presence of 300 leading private equity and venture capital firms in Europe and North America.
Deal or no deal
• Only 46% of firms provide contact details (phone or email) for investment staff
• 30% don’t disclose specifics of the deals they want to make
• 96% of business owners said firms need to improve their communications
Reputation rules, ok?
Private equity’s reputation is still an issue with 86% of LPs saying the industry’s reputation is not good and the majority (62%) unable to point to any improvement at all since 2008. Management teams, advisors and the media agree that private equity has a poor image and fewer than one in ten think improvements have been significant.
Commenting, Emma Payne, Director Pivot Partners said: “Smart firms can avoid the school boy errors of their peers by clearly explaining their investment criteria and making sure that names and contact details for key staff are easy to find online. LPs, management teams and the media wish that GPs would communicate with them better – those that do will see the benefits.”
The GP Stakeholder Communications Survey also proves the growing importance of social media sites. LinkedIn, in particular is an important resource for LPs and business owners.
• 82% of business owners looking to raise finance use LinkedIn to research private equity firms
• 72% of LPs check out GPs and their team members on LinkedIn
• 30% of GPs don’t even realise this is happening
• Almost 50% of GPs don’t understand the value of social media
• Only 32% have an up-to-date social media policy in place.
Trendy venture firms
Of the 300 firms reviewed, only 181 had a LinkedIn account with only 25% of these linking to it from their website. GPs that have a direct link from their website to their LinkedIn page enjoy a 1,484 average follower base, compared to 915 followers where the LinkedIn page isn’t promoted on the company website.
The top three LinkedIn firms by followers are:
• Blackstone – 21,077
• Sequoia – 12,677
• Bain Capital – 12,181.
Corporate Twitter pages are available for 96 of the 300 firms reviewed with two-thirds of those linking to their Twitter page from their website. Firms that provide a link to their Twitter accounts have an average of 6,670 followers compared to 869 followers where the account is not linked.
The top three Twitter accounts by followers are:
• Sequoia – 90,114
• First Round – 36,606
• Greylock – 28,583.
Facebook languishes as a communication tool for private equity and venture capital firms with only 14% of the 300 firms rated having a Facebook page. However, almost 50% of journalists and 40% of business owners regularly use Facebook to communicate and research.
Media enquiries: Ingrid Tighe on 07962 276580 or Ingrid@pivotpartners.co.uk
Copies of The GP Stakeholder Communications Survey and info graphics are available by emailing Ingrid@pivotpartners.co.uk
Notes to Editors:
Research for The GP Stakeholder Communications Survey was conducted by Pivot Partners, a private equity marketing consultancy in July and August 2013.
Pivot Partners also assessed 300 websites and social media pages of the most active private equity and venture capital firms with a third being in each of the UK, mainland Europe and USA.
Pivot Partners is a research-led marketing and communications consultancy for the private equity industry. Our work defines and builds the reputation of our clients; helps them communicate with people integral to their business and drives business success through effective, enduring and measurable marketing programmes.
Pivot Partners’ Directors are experienced marketing and PR professionals who have worked inside the private equity and corporate finance industries for over 30 years.
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