Saturday, July 30, 2005

New mobile analyst blog

John Sun has started up an interesting new blog covering what analysts are saying about the mobile market. Nice work John.

Friday, July 29, 2005

Analysts v Press…Understanding the Difference

Dealing with industry analysts in the same way as journalists is a mistake commonly made by IT companies. They fail to recognise that the analysts are a separate specialist group of influencers.

It may not seem important nor be immediately apparent why it really is vital to treat these key audiences in different ways when communications plans are devised.

Actually, it’s crucial. Treating an analyst like a journalist will prevent you from realising the influence they have in the industry. (In the same way, treating a journalist as an analyst won’t get you the media coverage you’re after).

There are distinct differences between analysts and journalists. They play different roles in the industry. They require different types of information. They work in different ways. They operate to different timescales. They influence different people – in different ways.

Journalists are interested in getting coverage. That is their raison d’etre. Good stories – and especially scoops - lead to a healthy career. Poor stories – or worse, no stories – mean the journalist loses their job. However, while media coverage is important to many IT companies can it really compare to the influence that analysts can bring to bear?

Analysts are interested in gaining market insight. It puts them in a better position to advise their clients on how to gain strategic advantage. And that’s critical.

The analysts are the industry’s gurus, guiding technology purchasing decisions by providing independent and expert advice on which IT solutions and providers to choose. When customers and prospects review technology purchase decisions, they consult the industry analysts.

The analysts are listened to by every serious print and broadcast journalist, as well as attracting some of the biggest audiences at major industry conferences.

The analyst advise all of the major technology vendors, working with them to define product, marketing and sales strategies and messages.

That’s not to mention the influence they wield with the financial community and venture capitalists.

However in order to do their jobs properly, it’s important they have access to the right kind of information at the right time from the right spokesperson.

For example, briefing the analysts at the same time as the press makes it hard for the analyst. They don’t have the chance to think through what’s been said before their clients and the press are on the phones asking “what does this mean?”

Giving the analysts a superficial story angled for the press means they won’t have the depth of information they need to make an informed and educated judgement on what’s been said.

There is an art to communicating effectively with the analysts and building positive, long-term relationships with them. It is worth learning.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Changes in the mobile world

Andrew Tanner-Smith of Frost & Sullivan finishes there in August. He is on his way to Nokia.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Gartner absorbs vertical services from G2

I''ve just returned from a couple of weeks off and am catching up with what's been happening in the analyst world.

First off, it looks like Gartner's announced the plans that we heard about a few weeks ago and is folding G2 into its main research operation.

It will now focus on ten vertical markets - three in the FS space (banking, insurance and investment services), government, education, energy & utilities, healthcare, manufacturing, media and retail. Of the other G2 offerings, automotive has been folded into manufacturing while travel appears to have been dropped.

The word is that no new analysts will be hired. Nor will the sales force be aligned to sell specific verticals.

Vertical coverage has always been a field in which Gartner has lagged behind the market. With industry-specific IT research now increasingly demanded by technology vendors and purchasers alike, this move makes sense to us.

Outsell has more at:

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Off-Topic: Andrew Smith's look at IT media relations

Not analyst related at all, but I found this post by Andrew Smith interesting.

Most shocking? That this will surprise some IT PR people out there (and it will, trust me...)

The wonders of jargon and the TLA

Neil Ward-Dutton has a good post about how jargon / TLA-based sales and marketing is still being supported by some (un-named) analyst firms...