The IIAR> will soon release a new and long-awaited white paper that provides fresh insights and information into how the field of Analyst Relations will evolve and change over the coming 5-10 years. To mark the debut of this white paper, IIAR will host a webinar on the 5th December2019 at 0800 PST / 1000 EST / 1600 GMT to outline some of its key findings, and to discuss important considerations that will be relevant to everyone working in the Analyst Relations field.Continue Reading →
I was fortunate to become an insurance industry analyst in 1997.
Before that time, I had worked in the business side of the insurance industry for 17 years (primarily in marketing and/or market research across all major lines of business) and then due to, what was to prove a very lucky event in hindsight, being caught up in a purge from John Hancock, becoming a management consultant. After eight years as a management consultant, I got and grabbed the opportunity to become an insurance industry analyst. I definitely found my true professional love being a part of the analyst community. [One difference between a management consultant and an analyst? Analysts don’t have to be nice!]
My insurance industry analyst experience included leading or launching and leading insurance strategic advisory services in the US and the UK. Looking back at those experiences at META Group, Financial Insights (IDC), and Ovum, these highlights standout to me. BTW Before going into my highlights I want to state that I respected all three firms for not being just vertical (i.e. industry) analyst firms but instead were homes for analysts from a large variety of IT and Telco disciplines as well as having vertical analysts. Continue Reading →
What is the future of Analyst Relations looking like? How is our field evolving?
Have you recently thought about:
- Whether AR is evolving into “Influencer Relations”?
- How AR is changing to meet the evolving IT industry analyst firm landscape?
- How AR can adapt to — and adopt — new ways of measuring AR productivity and effectiveness?
- What the “next chapter” in the AR field will be?
Several pieces have already been published on the unceremonious departure of Peter Sondergaard, Gartner EVP of Research (LinkedIn, @petersonderg)already (ZD Net, Research Live, Kea), none adding any facts above and beyond the SEC filing.
We ran a quick poll yesterday and results weren’t conclusive: some will miss Peter who has been one of Gartner’s stars and highest earners over the years, masterminding the Gartner Symposium keynotes and presiding over the research agenda. Others welcome the change.
— IIAR (@IIAR) August 22, 2018
He is replaced by Mike Harris, formerly head of IT research (GITL). He was himself succeeded by Yvonne Genovese who moved from heading Gartner for Marketing Leaders (GML) where she drove high growth from a small base to a sizeable business.
AR pros should monitor closely research direction, quality and methodologies following this leadership change.
We wish good luck to Mike in his new role and send a heartfelt appreciation to Peter, also wishing him the best for his next steps.
Andrew Hsu‘s (LinkedIn) views on AR prioritization are handy. In a recent presentation, he stressed the role of prioritisation in helping us to think about AR, be more refined than our instincts can allow and to help us justify the choices we made when we allocated limited Analyst Relations resources.
Andrew’s starting point is the need to make smart, big bets. Rather than randomly allocating effort without focussing on influence, we want to focus our energy on a smaller number of analysts and, I think it’s implied, to boost the impact of the analysts we prioritize.
The common-sense of AR is problematic. We focus on the people we know, the ones who are cynical about our brand and the ones with whom we do the most business. Instead, Andrew says that we need to focus on both our business goals and the attributes of the analysts. He hits the nail on the head when he says that AR people are often ‘doing God’s work’ – merely serving the analysts. Instead, we need to focus on the timely needs of the business. Continue Reading →
Today’s guest post is a long(wish) read by Jon Collins from GigaOm (LinkedIn, @jonno) following our IIAR Webinar on “How not to be an industry analyst?“
If you enjoy this, why not check his “How not to write an autobiography?“
Introduction – a glass of wine…
For a start, a bit of background. I never meant to be an industry analyst, not as such: indeed, having done my time as a programmer, then IT manager and various forms of consultant, I hadn’t a clue what one was. Back in 1998, I was responsible for training and other informational services at a mid-sized consulting firm when a report from a company called “Butler Group” came across my desk. That was my first connection with the world of analysts.
A year or so later, I was looking for something new (a cyclic habit in my career); I was also drinking a rather fine glass or two of red, when I stumbled across an advert from Bloor Research. With my inhibitive defences down, I banged off an email straight away. I barely had time to regret it, as the following Monday I went for an interview… and the rest is an 18-year career.
These were exciting times. At the turn of the millennium the dot-com was still bubbling up: we launched a couple of web sites and face to face forums at the time (IT-Director and IT-Analysis) and set to making the most of the complexity and uncertainty, charging for clarity and simplicity. I remain proud of my 2001 report about the inevitable move towards universal service provision. We call it the cloud these days.
I paraphrase history, but by and large, analyst firms emerged in the mid-1990’s, as attention moved from bespoke ‘turnkey’ solutions and towards custom-built software. From there, they made sure to cover the space like any good ecosystem. So, has anything changed, over the past two decades?
I have worked for a variety of smaller firms and I have done a short stint at a bigger one —IDC. I’ve spent an awful lot of time hanging out with analysts, AR professionals and the firms they represent. I’ve also spent some time not being analyst, working behind the scenes to help some of the largest vendors tell their stories. And this, to an extent, is mine.
I don’t know if you are familiar with the C.S.Lewis classic, The Screwtape Letters — written from an old devil to a little demon? In a similar vein, I thought I’d capture some of the things I might tell my younger self. As they say, getting it wrong is the best form of experience, and it is good to share.
Le CXP is one of the oldest IT analysis firms around. It was created in 1973, six years before Gartner, under the auspices of the French Ministry of Industry by some of the largest French companies at the time: Air France, Anotec, Bred, BSN (now Danone), EDF, RATP and the Société Générale. Its remit was to provide expertise on packaged software -hence the name in French, the deliciously quaint Centre d’Expertise des Progiciels. It’s been doing just this plus some consulting for IT users, gently and in French (Americans would call this in “local language”) until it bought PAC, a rival but vendor-focussed French firm, in 2014. At last I should say, and after PAC’s founder, Pierre Audoin, passed away.
Before this, Le CXP bought German BI specialist BARC in 2011 and PAC snapped German firm Berlecon on the same year. As a result, we’ve got a Paris based firm doing more business in Germany than France. They must like it there.
Are you still following me?
Industry Analyst Relations is often characterized as a “Pay to Play” endeavor with little opportunity for the bootstrapped tech venture; this is not the case. I would argue that there are opportunities for a dedicated Tech Startup to benefit from pursuing Industry Analyst Relations (IAR) even without a large budget to spend. Keep in mind Industry Analysts are knowledge focused experts and there can be equitable and beneficial exchanges of information for those who have put forth the effort to develop their Analyst Relations program and build the necessary relationships in the community. For those new to Industry Analyst Relations and who are considering the reasons to perform IAR, below are some common misconceptions, followed by four compelling reasons to develop an Industry Analyst Relations mission early in a Tech Startup. Continue Reading →
Feeling the pinch in your negotiation with Forrester on your subscription contract?Do you feel comfortable in buying the multiple seats being pushed your way? Is Forrester covering the technology and business areas that are important for you? You’re not alone – many of your peers and IIAR members have commented (see the IIAR Tragic Quadrant 2017)
Forrester seems to force sell multiple seats, TEIs etc during renewals. Forrester analysts may be amongst the top IIAR Analyst of the Year 2017 but is Forrester seeing an exodus of top talent? As per the IIAR Analyst Firm of the Year 2017 survey, AR professionals mentioned that they felt a flip flop in Forrester’s focus on various key topics and verticals. Also the research subscription costs seem to be increasing at 10-20% yoy. They also felt that while Forrester had some great visualisation of data BUT insights were focused on niche topics like Customer Experience, Business Technology, Software and Marketing. Many Wave’s have not been renewed while others are renewed in an irregular cycle. Continue Reading →
A few inches of snow in the deep midwinter in Munich didn’t stop the 2018 IIAR German chapter kick-off from going ahead, with six intrepid AR professionals getting together to exchange news, views and the occasional snippet of gossip – under Chatham House rules, of course.
Hosted by IIAR Germany chapter leads Yvonne Kaupp (@YveKaupp, LinkedIn) and Simon Jones (@simondestrier, LinkedIn), the networking event was focused on the topic of “how to run an effective inquiry”, with IIAR members and guests (our “prospective members”) sharing best practice and experiences. One point which came through loud and clear is that everyone is nervous about running their first analyst inquiry calls – usually related to having enough questions to ask in a 30-minute call. Continue Reading →
A few years ago, I transitioned from an AR Practitioner to an Analyst & Advisor Practitioner and have met a few others like me. I have also met Analyst Relations professionals who have been thinking about transitioning to Sourcing Advisor Relations (SAR). To discuss the SAR role in more detail, Ed Gyurko (LinkedIn, @edgyurko) and I created the IIAR SAR Workgroup. I hosted a roundtable webinar and this blog is a summation of that webinar.
A new breed of (Sourcing Advisor Relations) SAR is emerging, whose job resembles that of a solutions broker. To succeed, a new skill-set is needed. For analyst relations professionals, the gap is widening and it’s becoming harder simply to move over into Advisor Relations.
As we’ve heard from many sources, the big deal is dead. Buyers have been buying for some time and have become mature, relying less on advisors to assist them with the “big deals”. Continue Reading →
This spring, Crisp Research announced the appointment of well-known industry analyst Stefan Ried to head up a new practice area focused on the Internet of Things. For @Crisp_Research, his arrival was a big step – signaling aspirations beyond its core DACH market (Germany, Austria and Switzerland) to grow and cover all of Europe. And for @StefanRied, it was a return to the analyst industry after spending the last two years with a vendor.
Continue Reading →
2017 is definitely a a tectonic year for influencer relations: after expanding to other functions with the CEB purchase, Gartner Inc. (NYSE:IT) announced it bought L2, a brand benchmarking agency cum research company founded by Scott Galloway.
This further reinforces its capabilities in marketing and digital, a segment coveted by rival Forrester (NASDAQ:FORR).
As IT expenditure moves to business lines and to the marketing fiction of customer experience, this is a path also trodden by consultancies: the big four (Deloitte, EY, PwC, KPMG), IT players such as IBM and Accenture and the TWICH (Tech Mahindra, Wipro, Infosys, TCS, Cognizant, HCL) as well as regional players such as BearingPoint have all been buying digital agencies. This potentially brings Gartner’s mainstream RAS (Research Advisory Services) in competition with those service companies as well as specialists such as Sapient Nitro (Gartner consulting sometimes already competes with some of those players. Continue Reading →
This January feels like our IIAR April Fool posts came early. After Gartner gobbling the largest peer-to-peer advisory firm CEB (Corporate Advisory Firm) for a cool USD 3.3 billions (2.6b in cash and stock plus 700m debt), the long awaited and many times postponed sellout of IDG, the parent company of IDC, happened yesterday.
Firstly, the acquisition of CEB by Gartner is notable for three reasons:
So this is not a META Group style margins-led competitive take-out (2005) but more an expansion into new markets just like in 2009 as Gartner bought AMR, SCM World and Burton to address techies and supply chain roles.
Where does that leave IDC and the others?
To kickstart Q3 and the forthcoming events season, the U.K. Chapter of the IIAR has organised an evening of healthy debate, intelligent content and responsible drinking.
Agenda – Wednesday 14th September 2016 – London
- 1800: Welcome drinks
- 1815: Welcome note & update by the IIAR Board
- 1830: Tutorial: Case studies in Effective External AR support, Dominic Pannell /Buzz Method (LinkedIn, @buzzmethod)
- 1900: Panel discussion – Creating AR impact – are agencies an asset or a threat?
Chaired by Ludovic Leforestier /Bearing Point and IIAR Board (@lludovic, LinkedIn) with
- 2000: Analyst firm spotlight with Aditya Kishore / Heavy Reading (an Informa company)
- 2045: Drinking Class on Gin presented by Paulina Michelak, By The Bottle
- 2115: networking sponsored by Tenderlake and By The Bottle – Networking Through Responsible Drinking
Whilst public relations and marketing are mainstream in commercial companies, most analyst relations (AR) professionals are often at pain to describe their role.
AR is a relatively new discipline, tracing its origins in the last 15-20 years when a handful of very large ICT firms institutionalised a function to handle consultants and analysts relation. Nowadays all major technology vendors and services players have established sizeable analyst relations (AR) departments –50 to hundred strong for mega-vendors such as IBM or HP. Its raison d’être is to liaise with industry analysts, providing them a single point of contact and managing the relationship between them and the suppliers. Continue Reading →
Industry Analysts – Love ’em or hate ’em, but ignore them at your peril
Industry Analysts range from the boutique one-man band to the behemoth Gartner. Industry Analyst firms exist to fill a gap in the market – namely providing expertise in a particular field, so decision-making becomes easier. That’s the theory anyway, the reality is somewhat more complex.
Industry Analysts spend a great deal of their time speaking to buyers and sellers of technology, which means that are speaking to your customers, prospects, competitors and then some. To provide the best advice to their customers, analysts need to cut through the BS in the market. Why is there so much BS? That’s easy, everyone has an agenda and often a different point of view. Analysts can fall in love with your company or technology and tell everyone they meet. They can also not like you personally very much and tell everyone or no one. Continue Reading →
For over a decade, freemium has been the ubiquitous business model for fledgling internet firms and the developers of smartphone apps. Users sign up for free to enable basic features, and are then drawn into subscribing to various levels of premium functionality. More recently, the freemium model has been the subject of considerable attention in the B2B market research space, with some rather extravagant claims and unsound thinking being used to herald it. Let’s have a closer look. Continue Reading →