Executive sponsorship is critical success factor for a “Defending the Magic Quadrant” program

While we recommend that vendors don’t obsess over Gartner’s Magic Quadrant (MQ), it is also important that they realize that investing effort consistently between MQ refreshes will ensure that no nasty surprises pop up.

After we wrote in the SageCircle newsletter that vendors need to watch out for MQ complacency, especially if they are in the Leaders quadrant, Carter Cromley sent us the following email:

“We at SAVVIS are by no means complacent about our position.  In fact we’re incredibly paranoid to the point of having an organized “Defending the Magic Quadrant” program (that included executive sponsorship) that seemed to be effective in us maintaining our leadership positioning the web hosting MQ (just published).”

One of the key points that Carter makes is having executive sponsorship for the MQ program. One of the critical “currencies” to spend with any analyst, but especially with Gartner analysts, is access to executives. Carter certainly earns the title “Defender of the Magic Quadrant” for getting his executives onboard his AR program. 

SageCircle Technique:

  • Educate executives that effective AR has a hard return on investment (ROI) based on revenue growth caused by leveraging the industry analyst influence on sales
  • Cultivate consistent executive participation in your AR activities
  • Develop an executive buddy program that gets top analysts regular, non-briefing interactions with top executives
  • Provide executives with AR best practices briefings to ensure effective analyst interactions

Bottom Line: The primary danger for vendors on one of Gartner’s Magic Quadrants is complacency about their position. Savvy vendors combat this complacency by never being satisfied with their current position and supporting commentary. This attitude leads these vendors to constantly evaluate their approach and work to improve their plans and execution.

Question: AR managers – Does your AR plan include periodic activities that ensure that you maintain or improve your MQ positioning?