IIAR Analyst Relations Professional of the Year 2014 – and the winner is…

IIAR AR Professional of the YearSo here’s what you’ve all been waiting for – perhaps you’re wondering, “Is it someone I know? Could it be me?!” Well, before we get that far, let’s take a good look at ourselves to determine if we deserve the recognition or not.

As mentioned in the previous post, analysts did get the opportunity to give feedback not just on what AR pros do well and how well they do it, but also on what they don’t do well. Here are some examples of – ahem – bad practices which we are sure none of the top AR pros would ever engage in…

Top of the list: poor communication and poor content. By far this is the biggest issue AR pros have to deal with, as analysts provided nearly 80 comments about how they receive too little valuable information, too much marketing or PR or sales pitches, as well as a tidal wave of information of no or little relevance to their coverages via blanket emails and press releases. Surely if you want to drive Results you need to share the right information in the right way – in fact it seems some AR pros communicate with many analysts in a one-way fashion rather than engaging in two-way open dialog. One quote which clinched it was that AR pros need to “understand that dealing with analysts is not PR or marketing and that analysts are critical and analytical by nature. They need very high quality information which makes the ordinary marketing stuff of no use.” Enough said.

Second on the list was lack of Responsiveness and poor engagement with 20 mentions by the analysts. We’ve all been there – too many emails to deal with, too many requests on the go, too much pressure from stakeholders to prioritize on some analysts rather than others. However when an analyst writes “briefing me only once a year for the magic quadrant”, you know there’s a problem.

The next bugbear was gate-keeping with 17 comments about how AR pros do not let analysts interact with the right level of people, even to the point of stopping execs from handing out business cards! After this came a clear lack of understanding of the analysts, the different firms and their different roles, such as “assuming all analysts work like Gartner” or even “making us feel that Gartner is just so important and everyone else pales in comparison”. Not exactly the right practices to establish strong Relationships with the analysts.

On relationships, one important point to note here is that individual relationships matter more than employer’s brand -as you will see below, the individual IIAR AR Professionals of the Year don’t match up with the IIAR AR Teams of the Year as announced on Monday.

Let’s now take a look at those who got a special mention. When asking the analysts to name names, we gave them the opportunity to name up to three different people from any firm (vendor or agency side) in relation to how much those individuals stand out through their excellence in forging strong Relationships, being Responsive to requests and driving Results. The analysts named almost 320 different individuals from around the world, so there’s a very long tail and those who stood out needed to get at least 18 points in order to make the top 10.

So it’s a great pleasure to announce the fantastic achievement by Clare Loxley (LinkedIn, @ClareLoxley) from HP, who scored a grand total of 53 points and is by far the winner of the title of Analyst Relations Professional of the Year! Congratulations Clare!

In second place comes Signe Loenberg (LinkedIn, @signeloenberg) of Loenberg AR with a total of 43 points – also no mean feat and for someone who runs her own agency, she does herself proud!

And sharing third place with 32 points each are Andrea Edwards (LinkedIn, @AndreaTEdwards, blog) of Microsoft and Caroline Dennington (LinkedIn, @CDennington) of Symantec – well done Andrea and Caroline!

IIAR AR Professionals of the Year 2014

Of course there are many more individuals who stood out from the rest – you may be one of them! So why not join the webinar on Friday 10th April at 1600 BST to find out more. We will be running through the top 10 global AR pros, as well as the top 10 regional AR pros and details of the top five professionals for each of the three Rs. Full results will not be published on this blog so you’ll never know if you don’t listen in!



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Laura Brownrigg (LinkedIn)
Ludovic Leforestier (LinkedIn, @lludovic)



WEBINAR DETAILS  –  IIAR members can register now for the announcement IIAR Webinar on the 11th April at 1600 BST.  IIAR Webinars are free to attend for all IIAR Members, a good reason for joining the IIAR. For non-members there is a fee of $25/£15 (pay here) that is redeemable against IIAR Membership over the next 12 months. Join the IIAR via the form on this page, new members are always welcome !


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9 thoughts on “IIAR Analyst Relations Professional of the Year 2014 – and the winner is…”

  1. Thank you for publishing the deck. Can you share more info on the respondents please?

    1. Of the 300 total around 90 or 30% were from IDC – correct?
    2. When you say US and EMEA about 40% – is that each? Where do the rest come from – APAC? LATAM?
    3. You say all other firms are <10% – how many from Gartner and Forrester (i.e. how many big firm RAS analysts?).
    4. How many from sell side vendor facing consultants and analysts for hire?

  2. This is really interesting.
    What makes an AR pro highly rated by one set of analysts (e.g., for argument’s sake, IDC analysts) might make another set of analysts have very different opinions.. and the difference will be at least partially driven by the AR pro’s client and their priorities (e.g. “provide whatever IDC needs, but try and hold everyone else at bay”). Who matters most? Probably the client, not the analysts, I’m guessing.

    1. Hi Neil, it’s a good point and one which we did discuss to a certain extent in the webinar. We acknowledge that different AR pros may have different ways of working, some may favour just the large analyst firms, others may have a more inclusive approach. It all depends on how they view the analyst firms and practices are very different from one AR pro to the next. Having worked at a large vendor for a number of years, I can speak from experience when I say it may or may not depend on the client or vendor. Personally, I think a lot of it depends on experience, understanding of each analyst’s role, and bandwidth or resources. AR is there to provide counsel on which analysts to engage with so the onus is on us to choose the right analyst targets and build those relationships, but ultimately it’s our employer who pays our wages!

  3. Pingback: Thank You Asia’s Analysts | Communicating Asia Pacific

  4. Some interesting results. First well done to those that did well and for aspiring to make a difference.

    Speaking from my long experience (20 years!) I believe that the ones good at their job will always shine and try and make a difference wherever they go. I understand that vendor priorities may be different and biased towards certain analyst groups and companies but better AR people will understand this and try and mitigate it where possible by guiding vendors to the harm created. They know from experience that analysts will also do the rounds and maybe in better positions at a later date and remember the treatment they got! Thus most good AR people do try to be even and as helpful as possible. I know that I have recommended some to vendors before including some that are on the top list and I think over time you can always see and appreciate the ones who genuine want to help and make your life as an analyst easier.

    PS: I also think we analysts should appreciate not only the winners but even the top 20 in the list as the difference is marginal in this top bracket.

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