• Recent Posts: Influencer Relations

    Is this how the Quadrant lost its Magic?

    Is this how the Quadrant lost its Magic?

    Gartner’s Magic Quadrant is the most influential non-financial business research document. In the late 1980s, it was a quick and dirty stalking horse to provoke discussions. Today it is an extensive and yet highly limited process, based on the quantification of opinions which are highly qualitative. The early evolution of the MQ tells us a lot about the challenge of industry […]

    Saying farewell to David Bradshaw

    Saying farewell to David Bradshaw

    A funeral and celebration for David Bradshaw (shown left in this 2000 Ovum awayday photo, arm raised, with me and other colleagues) is to take place at West Norwood Crematorium, London SE27 at 2.45pm on Tuesday 23rd August and after at the Amba Hotel above London’s Charing Cross Station, on the Strand. David considered that that Ovum in that incarnation was […]

    David Bradshaw 1953-2016

    David Bradshaw 1953-2016

    David Bradshaw, one of the colleagues I worked with during my time as an analyst at Ovum, died on August 11. He led Cloud research in Europe for IDC, whose statement is below. David played a unique role at Ovum, bridging its telecoms and IT groups in the late 1990s by looking at computer-telecoms integration areas like CRM, which I […]

    AR managers are failing with consulting firms

    AR managers are failing with consulting firms

    Reflecting the paradoxical position of many clients, Kea’s Analyst Attitude Survey also goes to a wide range of consultants who play similar roles to analysts and are often employed by analyst firms. The responses to the current survey show that consultants are generally much less happy with their relationships with AR teams than analysts are. The paradox is that as […]

    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 […]

How to use analyst market share numbers after Gartner makes a “huge mistake” with server market share numbers

photo-rob-enderle.jpgRarely do analysts call out another firm on perceived failures in research, but Rob Enderle does just that in Liars, Damn Liars and Statistics: Gartner Goofs on Server Numbers. Money quote:

“…However, the accuracy of these numbers even inside corporations (given how deals are accounted for) would suggest that getting within 5 percent of actual sales would be very difficult, let alone having a high level of confidence that under 1 percent actually signified real market leadership. …”

Rob then goes into an interesting discussion of the shortcomings of market share numbers and the methodologies used to create them. The article is well worth reading. It would be interesting – fun even – if more analysts engaged each other in the marketplace of ideas rather than having a monologue with clients.

SageCircle has long said that market share numbers from the market research analysts can provide interesting insights into the direction a market is going. However, relying on the numbers alone without understanding how they are created or the assumptions that went into their research can lead to the wrong conclusions. To address this problem we wrote SageNoteTM AR81 “A Consumers’ Guide to Market Share Numbers.” You can get a copy of this SageNote by contacting info [at] SageCircle dot com or 650-274-8309. The content has also been incorporated into the Online SageContentTM Library, which is available to subscribers.

SageCircle Technique: Users of analyst market share numbers should use the following questions with analysts in order to be good consumers of the research:

  • What is your market taxonomy with supporting definitions?
  • How did you verify the vendor-supplied numbers?
  • Do you footnote whether the numbers came from an audited or unaudited source?
  • Do you footnote differences in the definitions of numbers provided by the vendors?
  • How do you handle a situation when a vendor does not supply numbers?
  • Who collects the data, a senior analyst or a research operations staff?
  • If research operations, how was the staff trained?

Bottom Line: Users of market share numbers should strive to be informed consumers of analyst research. The best results are obtained by the having a relationship with the market researcher and using that relationship to obtain insights into the quality of the numbers. Consumers should be aggressive in challenging analyst positions and asking for background information on how they developed their numbers.

Question: Market research users – Do you rigorously challenge the analysts about their numbers and methodology?

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

%d bloggers like this: