Basically, it’s an “all-inclusive” report on a company’s activities throughout the preceding year. Their objective: give shareholders and other interested people information about the company’s activities, financial growth and performance.
Annual reports are definitely not dying, but rather, evolving. It’s a sense of commitment for corporates to report and review their responsibilities, both in print and online. Here are the reasons why your Annual Report should be a masterpiece and of highest priority:
- It’s the mothership of communications: Apart from your company’s website, this document positions your company to a big audience. Whether it’s been produced in print or online, it’s a professional corporate brochure, a marketing tool representing the scale of accomplishments and goals. It’s a brand tool that can be used to build and improve each year, AND it drives traffic to your website.
- It’s got the CEO’s backing: Annual reports come with an almost impossible deadline, and with the CEO’s head on the line , it gets done, on time, every time. It can propel conversations with customers, partners and investors, uniting the strategies and objectives – marking the way forward.
- It’s THE resource: Annual reports are filled with approved content and images. Full of KEY messages, it can be used throughout the new year. The high quality images and video content can be used for presentations, social media and any other form of marketing. The brand unity and dialogue strategy is aligned across all fields.
- Connecting people with your company: The days of big-time faceless corporations are over, it’s about connecting with people and humanising your results through your story, getting your audience emotionally involved.
- Confidence in your brand: You are telling your story, and it’s backed by numbers, data and real-time results.
- Know how well your company is doing: Are the numbers better than last year? How’s sales? The financial section of the annual report will present these numbers for you to analyse.
- Get an overview of management’s current plan and how to improve it for the new year: The current plan and the new plan should be covered in the annual report, where the company has been and a well-thought out plan of where it’s going. (The yesterday, today, tomorrow).
Ultimately, it’s an opportunity: Tell the world what you do, why you do it and how well you do it. Not only does it set your company apart, but it builds trust with your audience and engages with them – and this motivates people to work with and believe in your brand.