• Recent Posts: Influencer Relations

    Your pitch to analysts isn’t just about your solution

    Your pitch to analysts isn’t just about your solution

    In pitches to analysts, there are many conversations going on. At one level, there’s a communication about the business solution. There’s also a conversation about the wider market and about the personal credibility of the participants. Sometimes the slides used in pitches are just excuses for the interaction. The slides are used to assess both the market vision of the firm and the […]

    KPMG pushes out 451 in 2017 Strategy Analyst Firm Awards

    KPMG pushes out 451 in 2017 Strategy Analyst Firm Awards

    For the strategic heavy lifting, executives are reaching out to a very wide range of advisors. Gartner heads up the list when we look at the Analyst Value Survey data to find the analyst firms most valued by people who work on strategy. It creates almost 19% of all the value being produced by analyst services around strategy (If CEB, […]

    Save the date for our Analyst Firm Awards

    Save the date for our Analyst Firm Awards

    This year we’re publishing our analyst firm awards more or less monthly. Please put the dates in your diary. If you’re a subscriber to the Analyst Firm Awards, you can also access a webinar for each of these events, held on the final Thursday or each month. January – Global January 18 – Outstanding reports February 17 – Strategy March 15 – Internet […]

    IDC could flourish after IDG’s sale to Chinese consortium

    IDC could flourish after IDG’s sale to Chinese consortium

    As we predicted in our April Fool’s Joke last year, IDC has been sold as part of a Chinese-led purchase that leaves CEO Kirk Campbell at the helm. IDG Capital will take control of the IDG Ventures; China Oceanwide will control IDG and most of IDC, and an independent trustee will take control of IDC’s High Performance Computing (HPC) practice, […]

    Kea Company acquires UK analyst relations consultancy Active Influence

    Kea Company acquires UK analyst relations consultancy Active Influence

    Merger consolidates Kea Company’s position as world’s largest analyst relations consultancy January 19, 2017. London — Kea Company, the world’s largest analyst relations consultancy, today completed its acquisition of Active Influence. Founded in 2010, Active Influence has helped many of the world’s largest technology companies to gain measurable business benefit from their relationships with analyst firms. Founder Richard East has become […]

Best practice for responding to analyst draft research

This best practice comes from guest contributor Gerry Van Zandt (Twitter handle), AR manager with HP Services.

Often (as you know) analysts will provide drafts of research notes or event-reaction pieces to vendors to review for inaccuracies.  You have a limited opportunity to provide a response or comment and need a process for action. Here are tips on how best to respond to draft research:

  • Be prompt — Help the analyst(s) by meeting the often very tight deadline they are providing for feedback. Respect the analyst’s business and don’t try to buy more time or delay by asking for an extension.
  • Check facts — Analysts will always want to ensure all facts and figures are correct, and will generally take vendor input and corrections here (for example, for revenue or employee data) unless they have additional, reliable sources. If the facts are totally correct be sure to tell them and thank them for their accuracy.
  • Be reasonable — Provide reasonable commentary and adjustments to analyst statements that you or your firm may not agree with. Don’t expect analysts to change their statements wholesale based on your comments or proposed corrections. If you take strong issue with an analyst’s statement or viewpoint, back up your response with facts and/or customers who can help reinforce your comments.
  • Set and manage internal expectations — If you get notice via a draft research note (Gartner Magic Quadrant, Forrester Wave, Navigator, SWOT, etc.) that your organization may not be rated as highly as you (or your executives) feel it should, you should prepare them as soon as possible and seek to mitigate potential negative impact among customer base or prospects. This does not mean issuing a press release or other public statement, but rather preparing talking points or other credible information that can be disseminated internally and to your field team to help prepare them. Do this as soon as possible and BEFORE the research becomes publicly available. If the research is appropriately positive you should prepare talking points and/or a silver bullet document for sales.
  • Manage executive response appropriately — If executives take strong issue with published research, discourage them from calling the analyst on the phone and venting. Rather, set up an inquiry through your account-team channels, and sit down with your executive(s) to rationally prepare a response. Seek to provide alternative viewpoints or provide additional references from customers that can reinforce your position. Conduct the meeting as a conversation and do not point fingers or reactive negatively. Use the discussion as a vector to improving the relationship, and find out from the analyst what he/she feels your firm needs to be doing better.
  • Close the loop — Distill the research and provide analyst feedback back into the executive ranks of the company, where it can do the most good in terms of decision-making.

Update: Here is what two Twittering analysts commented about when it came to AR responding to draft research. Not good.

Do you have AR, analyst or research consumer best practices that you would like to share with the community? If so, send them to info [at] sagecircle dot com. We are looking forward to hearing from you.

Bottom Line:  Being asked to review draft analyst research is a golden opportunity to strengthen relationship and develop credibility as a go-to resource for acting as a sounding board for new ideas, not just ensuring the facts are right. AR managers should give every draft research review request a high priority and provide valuable, non-self serving comments.

Question: AR managers – Do you give responding to analyst draft research a high priority? Do you approach the task in an ad hoc manner or do you have a set process you follow?

Advertisements

4 Responses

  1. A few others:

    Don’t Rewrite – We just *love* it when “X doesn’t work well for Y” comes back to us as “X is a strong choice for Y, with outstanding functionality and market-leading capabilities that are unmatched by any competitor.”

    Factual Foundation – We’re submitting for accuracy, so if you think we got something wrong, better have some facts, proof points, data, evidence or *something* to back your points up, not just “we didn’t think the tone was right” or “here’s how our marketing department would like to see this written.”

    Btw, for Illuminata, prompt = 2 business days.

  2. Excellent post. I find most vendors to be prompt and realistic, but there’s always some that try to transform the analysis into PR content.

  3. Hi Jonathan and Jonathan, Thanks for the comments.

    Great point about having some facts to back up any suggested changes.

  4. […] the Forrester…Gerry Van Zandt on Who is attending the Forrester…sagecircle on Best practice for responding t…Jonathan Block on Best practice for responding t…Jonathan Eunice on Best practice for […]

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: