Analyst Relations budget – Use it, don’t lose it

It’s now July 22nd, about half way through the third calendar quarter. Many communications and IT vendors have budget policies in place where departments lose any budget that is not spent within a particular fiscal quarter or calendar year. AR managers frequently find it difficult to find a good use for remaining budget, especially when it might only be a few thousand dollars. Are you kicking yourself because you had had left over budget at the end of the last quarter that you did not use? In addition, you don’t want to blow any remaining budget on something that might not be used to its fullest extent, like a reprint of a so-so research note or a Gartner Advisory seat for someone who probably won’t do inquiries.

An excellent use of remaining budget is AR staff development because it increases efficiency and effectiveness, boosts staff morale and adds variety to the job. Staff development  is even more important during a recession when bonuses are meager and pay raises are not likely.

To make it easy for AR managers to spend odd amounts of end-of-the-quarter budget, SageCircle offers its services à la carte as well as by annual subscription. We have many services under $1,000 such as webinars ($95), Online SageContent Library ($395), AR briefings ($495), workshops ($495) and advisory blocks (2 hours $495, 5 hours $995) and seminars ($995).

Another advantage of SageCircle AR training offerings is that many are 90 minutes or less, making them easy to fit into a busy schedule or a regular staff call. Oh, did I mention that you can conveniently buy any SageCircle service via credit card to ensure you get it into this quarter’s purchases? We will also work around the clock to complete any paperwork you need for traditional purchase order/invoice.

Here are three examples of how you can mix-and-match SageCircle training services to meet various needs:

AR continuing education – This example assumes an experienced AR staff located in one office. The first two items are free, which of course is a great price. Using the AR DiagnosticTM as a continuing education tool is atypical, but the questions asked Continue reading

Adding more sessions to make it easier for you to attend AR training

Frequently we hear from AR professionals wanting to attend one of our seminars, webinars or Coffee Talks saying they could not attend the scheduled session. In the very next sentence is usually “when will the session be scheduled again or do you have a replay?” To answer the request for additional scheduling options, we are happy to announce that we are greatly expanding the times we schedule webinars and Coffee Talks. Every month we will have two sessions for the Coffee Talk, two sessions for the new webinar and two repeats. In addition, most months will have public seminars scheduled as well.

To help you keep track of all these options, we are launching a new page on the SageCircle blog called, not surprising, Calendar to graphically display all the scheduled training for a number of months (see below for an example). You can find new page in the left-hand navigation menu in the “Pages” section. Currently we have February, March and April posted and will be adding additional months soon. If you to know about an AR training event in the May through July timeframe, please send us an email (info [at] sagecirle.com) and we’ll happily send you the information.

If you are a regular reader of the SageCircle blog, especially for breaking news in the analyst ecosystem ( e.g., news around the six firms that have laid off analysts in the last three weeks), a great way to show your support for this free service is by signing up for one of our events. Thanks.

 We look forward to seeing you at one of our events.

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AR-Sales Partnering
       
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How to rank & tier analysts
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Essential AR skill – knowing analyst firm research methodologies

One of the essential skills for all analyst relations (AR) professionals is knowing the different types of research methodologies used by analysts and the implications for vendors. 

For example, advisory analysts* are very well positioned to spot  a vendor’s message inconsistencies. That is because advisory analysts are talking to a wide variety of people that interact with that vendor in addition to the analysts’ direct interactions which are arranged by the vendor (click on graphic to enlarge). Advisory analysts hear from their end-user clients during inquiries what the vendor sales representatives are saying to the end user. The analyst is then in position to compare what the sales rep is saying to prospects/customers versus what AR and executives are directly telling the analyst. Advisory analysts are also talking to financial analysts and the press, which provides additional opportunity to compare what AR is saying to the analyst in contrast to what the vendor is saying to these other communities.

This is a critical insight for AR teams that Continue reading

How to manufacture a “problem analyst”

After promoting the Dealing with Problem Analysts webinar (September 17th at 8:30 am PT and 4 pm PT) on Twitter, I got the following tweet from Martin Atherton (profile, Twitter handle) of Freeform Dynamics:

 

The tweet was good for a chuckle, but it got me thinking. Martin has great points, but what he brought up were just AR best practices* not true problems. However, it sparked a thought that vendors could “manufacture” a problem analyst. Here are some “worst practices” that AR should consider avoiding:

  • Complaining about perceived bias without offering measureable proof
  • Demanding changes to draft or published research without Continue reading

There is still time to sign up for SageCircle’s AR Seminar on Monday, June 23rd

SageCircle Training - AR Effectiveness SeminarThere are still seats available for the SageCircle AR Effectiveness Seminar that starts on Monday, June 23rd. The price includes the 155+ page binder. To learn more, click on the graphic to the right to download the brochure in PDF.

Click here to register for the seminar. Cost is $995. Annual Advisory clients received one seminar ticket with their subscription, so please check to see if you have used the ticket yet.

Looking forward to seeing you in Cupertino.

Heads up about next week’s Coffee Talk on Monday and webinar on Wednesday

There are two exciting events for analyst relations (AR) professionals - did I actually use “exciting” and “AR” in the same sentence? – events next week:

Monday, June 16th, at 8:30 am US Pacific Time - “Does it make sense to set up an AR-Sales Partnership program?” This free session is part of SageCircle’s Coffee Talk series. Coffee Talks have only a few minutes of presentation as their primary purpose is go get members of the AR community talking and asking questions. Click here to register.

Wednesday, June 18th at 8:30 am and 4:30 pm US Pacific Time – “Spokesperson Best Practices for Analyst Interactions” This webinar costs only $95 and provides actionable, practical best practices in a short and succinct manner. There is ample time for questions and answers to complement the presentation. Click here to register using a credit card.

 

The SageCircle post you have been waiting to see

I’m sure this is an announcement that all of our faithful readers have been eagerly waiting to see. [drum roll please] We are pleased to announce that we have updated our brochures and services pages. Excited? Oh, you have not exactly been sitting on the edge of seats waiting for this? Oh, well.

Seriously, the tabs and pages (1/ Advisory, 2/ AR Wiki, 3/ Training, 4/ AR-Sales Partnership) that contain background information on SageCircle services are some of the most visited pages on the blog. This is just a heads up that we have refreshed the Continue reading

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