We’re all busy. But no matter how busy you are, analysts are probably busier. Imagine a chipmunk with ADHD and a caffeine addiction. That is the juggler whose attention you are trying to grab and whose opinion you are hoping to modify. Individual practices and business models will vary, and understanding how analysts work helps AR pros to position ourselves properly and engage analysts productively. Understand what your target analyst’s day and life looks like… it helps you strategize your approach.
In Analysts on Analyst Relations, Jeremiah Owyang, Rachel Happe, and Richard Stiennen weigh in on what they spend their days on. And several other analyst chime in on the most common activities:
Research. This is the core element of an analyst’s work. Based on their agenda they obtain data, talk to users, discuss with vendors, and add their point of view to create wide and deep insights on a space. Read what they write to understand their thinking about the market, products, technology models, and more. This window is your opportunity to bond with the analyst over what they care about and position your company in the analyst’s mind.
Blogs and social media. Most analysts are active through blogs, Twitter and LinkedIn. These channels work together with more formal research. Social media helps their brand and draws attention to research. It cuts through firm paywalls to get core commentary and concepts out in the market.
Content development for vendors- white papers, case studies, custom research, presentations, and more. Reputable analysts can amplify and validate vendor messages with a third-party perspective. But, reputable is the key word. These content pieces must never smell of “pay-for-play,” and therefore don’t comment on the vendor directly. Rather, they talk about market needs that align with the vendor’s value proposition. It’s a subtle, but powerful, difference.
Some analysts also spend a lot of time providing advisory to end users and investors, which makes them very influential for vendors. Make sure to know who they are and work with them accordingly.
Analysts come with different interests, skills, strengths and weaknesses. Your mission is to cut through all the activity to engage them in a way that supports your business goals. Understand each analyst’s focus and outputs to best leverage this work. Someone who spends more of their time on research may not be a good speaker. Someone who specializes in content may not give you the competitive insights you need. There is almost definitely an analyst who fits into every one of your initiatives… get the best one and benefit handsomely.