Don’t underestimate the visibility a blog can provide an analyst

An interesting exercise is to compare the relative web traffic between the largest advisory analyst firm (Gartner), the largest IT market research firm (IDC) and a very visible analyst who has his own blog. Using the site comparison feature of Compete here is the graphic showing Forrester analyst extraordinaire and social media poster boy Jeremiah Owyang’s (bio, Twitter handle, blog) personal blog Web Strategy by Jeremiah, Gartner.com and IDC.com:

Traffic comparison Gartner.com IDC.com and Jeremiah Owyang blog 

Click here or on the graphic to enlarge. The top blue line is Jeremiah’s blog, the green middle line is Gartner.com and the bottom orange line is IDC.com. There is not a single month in the past year where Web Strategy by Jeremiah did not receive more unique visitors (an average of 136,000 per month) than Gartner.com and IDC.com combined.

Not an apples-to-apples comparison… and that is the point 

Of course, comparing two very different types of websites, a blog vs. corporate sites, is not an apples-to-apples assessment. Rather this illustrates how a savvy analyst can leverage a personally branded blog to obtain unique access to a broader audience than he could even on the regular research website of a $1.2bn but very traditional analyst firm. This is because the analyst blog is easily Continue reading

Why analysts need to be more measured in their use of social media

icon-social-media-blue.jpgSageCircle recently posted about the how the lack of any review cycle by either vendors or the firms themselves allows for very timely social media postings on blogs or on twitter, but can represent a real challenge to AR teams, especially those that are not actively watching social media.  We thought it was obvious that the need for analysts validating content was a given.  However, in the past weeks we have encountered several instances where analysts appear to have made opinion statements based on rumor without checking facts.  In the rush to publish they have not been doing their due diligence or the vendor AR teams have not been responsive to the analyst request for information.  Please note this is not a common problem and we hope it does not grow.

This speculative type of behavior can be damaging to both large and small vendors – and it certainly kicks-off multiple unnecessary “recovery” or “damage control” cycles when the analyst could/should have just picked up the phone and asked them a question before posting or rushing to be the first to tweet.  The stories you are about to hear are real…. we have changed the names to protect the guilty.

In one situation some tweets expressed concern about the financial viability of a small company.  An influential analyst posted “I’ve been hearing there’s a lot of changes going on at <company>, if you’re a customer and this has impacted you, I want to know, email me”.  The flurry of activity resulted in a blog post suggesting that people hold off purchases.  After understanding all this was unfounded there was a “retraction”, but the company is still in damage control model.

In another situation, the Twitter post was “Hearing from <company> customers that there are new clauses that will force customers to commit to no Third Party Maintenance.”  This Twitter post was a specific callout implicating the company (in Twitter he even tied them specifically to anti-trust implications as a result of this speculation – which obviously was/is a VERY Continue reading

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