On the reading list – Groundswell: Winning in a World Transformed by Social Technologies

Groundswell book cover. Charlene Li and Josh BernoffEven though it has been out almost a year, “Groundswell: Winning in a World Transformed by Social Technologies” ($19.77 plus S&H, click to purchase on Amazon) by Forrester analyst Josh Bernoff (blogTwitter handle) and former analyst Charlene Li* is still very interesting and relevant. I had picked it off the bookshelf after writing about the one year anniversary of the Analyst Twitter Directory and found myself nodding in agreement as I reread it. 

* Charlene (blog,  Twitter handle) left Forrester Research in 2008 and has since launched the Altimeter Group.

Highly recommended.

Is your email to industry analysts value-add or spam?

Forrester analyst and best-selling business book Groundswell co-author Josh Bernoff (blog, Twitter handle, bio) has an interesting little critique of the emails he receives in Three quarters of the PR email I receive is irrelevant. Why? Josh tweeted me that this post applied just as much to analyst relations (AR) professionals as PR.

You should take a moment to read his post and do a quck review to see if you are you guilty of any of Josh’s offenses.

SageCircle’s Analyst Hierarchy of NeedsAs we pointed out in the “Analyst Hierarchy of Needs”, the analysts do appreciate outreach by AR teams. However, they want more than simple, generic outreach. They want “Personalized Outreach.” In our interviews with analysts the common refrain is “Just send me information about stuff I care about.” Once your AR program is proficient at providing analysts the basic information they need, your program should work to begin personalizing content based on the specific coverage, speaking calendar, and editorial calendar of individual analysts.  Targeted information supporting issues they are concerned about is highly prized by the analysts and can raise your AR program’s visibility significantly.  However, analysts who receive too much generic content will stop looking and miss your personalized information.  

Another point to be aware of when applying the Hierarchy of Needs to your analyst email distribution is emphasis changes depending on the analyst’s status. A Sage analyst will be significantly less tolerant of generic emails than a Novice analyst, who might appreciate the basic information (see Know your analyst – Novice, Luminary or Sage).

The situation differs when you are Continue reading

Thinking about Gartner’s Hype Cycle

As AR professionals focus (obsess) on the Gartner Magic Quadrant and Forrester Wave as primary targets for influencing, an important signature research deliverable is often overlooked – Gartner’s Hype Cycle (click graphic to see a larger version). This point is driven home by the fact that is takes a fair amount of work to find a vendor reprint of any Hype Cycle, whereas you can easily find MQ and Wave reprints starting on the first Google search results page. This vendor attitude is unfortunate because Gartner says that the Hype Cycle is the most read/download type of research, even more than the Magic Quadrant. However, because the Hype Cycle does not directly compare products and rarely even mentions vendors in passing, it is easy for vendors not to give Hype Cycles a high priority.

The Hype Cycle might take on additional visibility in October 2008 if Gartner and the Harvard Business School Press (HBSP) promote the new book, Mastering the Hype Cycle: How to Choose the Right Innovation at the Right Time by Jackie Fenn and Mark Raskino, as effectively as Continue reading

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