• Recent Posts: Influencer Relations

    Fersht: some IIAR award-winners “just tick the boxes”

    Fersht: some IIAR award-winners “just tick the boxes”

    Some of the firms mentioned by the IIAR’s analyst team awards fall short of excellence. That’s the verdict of several hundred analysts who took our Analyst Attitude Survey, and of the CEO of one of the top analyst firms. Phil Fersht left the comment below on our criticism of the IIAR awards. We thought we’d reprint it together with the […]

    Do the IIAR awards simply reward large firms?

    Do the IIAR awards simply reward large firms?

    The 2016 Institute for Industry Analyst Relations’ awards seem to be rewarding firms for the scale of their analyst relations, rather than their quality. In a blog post on July 6th, the IIAR awarded IBM the status of best analyst relations teams, with Cisco, Dell and HP as runners-up. Together with Microsoft, which outsources much of its analyst relations to […]

    Unmaking fruit salad: 6 ways to help analysts segment markets

    Unmaking fruit salad: 6 ways to help analysts segment markets

     It’s a common challenge for providers: some new or fast-changing market contains very different solutions. Clients want either apples or oranges, but the analyst research reads more like fruit salad. As new solutions come into old markets, or as analysts try to squeeze hot new solutions into their less-exciting coverage areas, it’s increasingly hard for users of analyst research to make […]

    Control in Analyst Attitude Surveys

    Control in Analyst Attitude Surveys

    Because a lot of analysts take part in our Analyst Attitude Surveys, we are able to offer clients what we call a control group. In the language of research, a control group is a group of people who don’t get the treatment that we want to measure the effectiveness of. For example, most firms might be focussed on a top tier […]

    Time for a new direction in AR measurement?

    Time for a new direction in AR measurement?

    Worldwide, Analyst Relations teams are committed to fostering the best information exchange, experiences and trusted relationships with tightly-targetted global industry analysts and influencers. Sometimes the targeting is too narrow and analysts are treated inhumanly. However, the technology buying process is transforming and so must the benchmarking of analyst relationships. There’s already a long-term transformation of analyst relations. Over one-third of technology […]

To generate short list placements, you need to narrow your claims to analysts [Startup Saturday]

rocket-for-startups.jpgFounders and senior executives at startups frequent speak about the future of their companies and markets with grand sweeping statements about how they are going to change the world. They also will say that every enterprise and small business or consumer should buy their product or service. While these might be legitimate statements and required when speaking to the press, when used with IT industry analysts they are often a credibility killer. After hearing such claims from a tiny vendor without many existing customers or demonstrated ability to execute, an analyst will often quietly smirk and not consider mentioning the startup to clients – potential prospects for the startup.

If analysts perceive that you are so scattershot in your target markets that you won’t be effective then they won’t risk their reputation putting you on short lists. What is more effective is being very focused on what markets you are targeting. By being focused it will increase your credibility because the analyst will think that you are being realistic in matching your ambitions to your resources. When analysts have that mindset, they are much more comfortable recommending your company to their end-user clients as “an interesting small vendor that has potential.”

 SageCircle Technique:

  • Develop a series of credible focused target markets to use with the analysts
  • Determine which of these example target markets are relevant to a specific analyst based on their client base
  • During the briefing confirm the type of IT buyer (aka end user) the analyst advises on a regular basis and adjust your example market to use depending on what you learn
  • Position your target market statement in phrases like “If you are talking to someone in _____ market needing ____ functionality, then we should be on that short list”
  • Use candor to increase credibility by eliminating markets in phrases like “if the IT manager needs ___ functionality and ____ vertical expertise, then we are definitely not the company to mention”

Bottom Line: Briefing IT industry analysts can be excellent way for startups to generate highly qualified leads and general market visibility. However, if the analyst perceives the startup has bit off more than it can handle in terms of breadth or depth of target market they will not recommend the startups for IT buyer short lists. By being more narrow and targeted about markets or verticals they are going after, startups will improve their credibility and increase their chances that analysts will send leads their way.

Question: Analysts – What is your opinion of startups that say they can do everything for everybody?

Are you delivering the most credible story you have to the analysts? SageCircle can help.  SageCircle strategists can:

  • Critique your analyst briefing content for hype and credibility killers
  • Review your target markets to ensure they appear realistic without being too narrow
  • Play the analyst role in practices to prepare you for the tricks the analysts use and help you develop credible answers to typical questions

For more information on how SageCircle can help startups leverage the market power of the IT industry analysts please contact info [at] sagecircle dot com or 650-274-8309. 

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