Most people in the tech industry believe all that matters from an analyst perspective is the Gartner Magic Quadrant. Executives, sales, marketing, product people. Maybe, if you’re lucky they mention the Forrester Wave as a distant second. That would sure make it simple, wouldn’t it?
MQs and Waves are certainly important. There’s no mistaking their impact on the buying cycle. Just ask a sales guy when your position drops against a formidable competitor. Ouch.
But, when that’s all that’s seen and expected it is a huge dis to what you do. Bravo to those who have engaged the hearts and souls of their leaders to see all the possibilities of analyst relations.
Strong AR pros forget about AR. Nobody cares about most AR metrics or the mechanics (headaches) of managing the program. Strong AR people talk about moving the needle in the business. People wake up. They care about that.
For me, aligning to business objectives becomes way more than an exercise.
I fiercely portrayed AR’s ability to drive revenue, delight customers, build the brand, dominate the market
I convince leaders that analyst influence isn’t just in the report-- they impact buying decisions every single day, and when no one’s watching they share much more than what they publicly write.
I catapult analysts from opinionated pains in the a**es to great sources of insight
I use that insight to drive critical changes in product and strategy.
It’s really hard. I’ve seen this work beautifully and I’ve seen it fail miserably. I like it a lot more when it works.
The better you know the business challenges that your people care about, the better you know which analyst knows what, and the better you can aim the right analysts at helping with the right problem in the right way, the more strategic and impactful you become.
After all, the Magic Quadrant is just the tip of the iceberg. When AR is done right, the iceberg is huge.
There’s so much more to this. What has worked for you?