• Recent Posts: Influencer Relations

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    Analyst Relations Value Forum to discuss Tragic Quadrant

    The IIAR has updated its Tragic Quadrant, which ostensibly ranks the ten top analyst firms in terms of impact, relevance and ease of doing business with. Earlier posts have mentioned the weaknesses of both the Quadrant and the underlying method. The IIAR’s 2017 top ten drops PAC, the fifth most valuable analyst firm. Crisp Research, ESG and Machina (Gartner’s IoT […]

    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, […]

Forrester loses third social media analyst – When do departures start to impact analysis and client service?

So, this is almost not news anymore – Forrester loses another social media analyst. In this case, Brian Haven (blog, Twitter handle) is leaving to join Peter Kim (see here for his departure news) at a startup. The other recent departure from Forrester’s social media research was Groundswell co-author Charlene Li (see here). The math so far is three analysts from one research team leave in less than six weeks. 

Think about the bigger picture. Changes in Forrester’s social media research team have been quite “interesting” lately with new hires, significant departures, the Groundswell book publication and the acquisition and integration of JupiterResearch.

Forrester can rightly claim that it has sufficient social media research head count on staff because of the JupiterResearch acquisition and new hires. However, the constant churn in the ranks of analysts on a single team poses real threats to continuity, productivity and quality in the short to medium run.  Also new hires do not equal experienced staff.

Remember, most analyst firms – including Forrester – have not invested in knowledge management systems. Without the infrastructure and the culture to capture data electronically, information that analysts harvest in vendor briefings and from other sources is stored between their ears, which means that it walks out the door if they leave the firm. For vendors, the result is that they are back at square one when it comes to a firm’s knowledge and context about the vendor. For research consumers, whether end user or vendor, significant churn in analyst ranks can result in working with analysts who might be smart, but do not have the breadth and depth of information and context as their former colleagues.

Some other analyst industry observers will no doubt be hyperventilating about the dire implications for Forrester these departures entail. Calm down. Take a deep breath. While a temporary setback for a particular Forrester analyst team, these bursts of departures from a hot research area are not unique (see here).

SageCircle clients can call to schedule an inquiry to obtain best practices on what to do when an analyst leaves a firm and brainstorm on the implications for their company. These best practices are also available in the Online SageContentTM Library.

SageCircle Technique:

  • AR professionals – Create a standard process for when top analysts depart
  • AR professionals – Aggressively seek to brief interim or permanent replacements for departing analysts
  • End users – For analysts who are not familiar, determine the tenure of the analysts for inquiries (e.g., a quick search on the firm’s website will show how long an analyst has been publishing)
  • End users – Use inquiry best practices to determine the breadth and depth of data points any analyst is using for the advice they are giving you

Bottom Line: This news is just a reminder to analyst relations professionals that they need to have a process in place for dealing with a departing analyst. Any departure of a key analyst from your list should send you into dynamic action. These departures represent an opportunity for competitive advantage for those vendors who act quickly and educate the new analysts.

Question: Vendors – Have you briefed Brian Haven since July 18th? Did he mention he was leaving Forrester?

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3 Responses

  1. […] my research director Christine Overby, and am in constant contact with our seasoned Josh Bernoff. Despite suggestions that some analyst firms do not have knowledge management strategies isn’t quit…. In fact, we retain the knowledge of our colleagues through tools like internal wikis, constant […]

  2. […] my research director Christine Overby, and am in constant contact with our seasoned Josh Bernoff. Despite suggestions that some analyst firms do not have knowledge management strategies isn’t quit…. In fact, we retain the knowledge of our colleagues through tools like internal wikis, constant […]

  3. […] in the summer of 2008 when some analysts left Forrester and IDC with “social media” fever (see here, here and here). However, since last summer it has been relatively quiet with only normal turnover […]

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