• Recent Posts: Influencer Relations

    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 […]

    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 […]

Transitioning to leading-edge AR: It’s in the plan

Analyst Relations PlanningWe have always received requests from directors of top analyst relations (AR) programs to define “World-Class AR.” These directors want to take their programs to the next level and they want to know the elements that characterize strategic AR. They also know that they require a plan for getting there. SageCircle has defined elements of this plan in its research on “The AR Effectiveness Matrix: Stages of AR Maturity, with the “Leading Edge” (Stage 3) representing world class AR. 

However, to provide a comprehensive response to these requests, we developed a 50-page report that is now a core component of the Online SageContentTM Library. In the process, we learned that 1) no one had developed a comprehensive vision yet and, if developed, a 2) comprehensive vision would have to be flexible enough to adapt to AR directors’ specific business needs. SageCircle built in this flexibility by focusing on how AR programs deliver business value to their companies (see Keys for World Class AR box).

pop-out-keys-for-world-class-ar

While the report provides a comprehensive overview of the components that make-up ‘Leading Edge’ AR programs, it leaves open the question: “How do we get there from here? This process is not simple (a “leap over tall buildings in a single bound” project). Rather, achieving ‘Leading Edge’ status requires AR VPs and Directors to develop a high-level roadmap for how they want to grow over the next two to three years. This long-term vision ensures that near-term investments in infrastructure, organization or staffing do not become barriers to next generation ‘Leading Edge’ AR strategies and tools.

 To lay the groundwork for this vision, AR can use its Strategic & Tactical Plan. While the plan primarily focuses on achieving near-term goals, especially sales support, it also includes high-level discussion of future direction and investments. This discussion educates executives on AR’s bottom-line impact, increasing its ability to secure long-term commitments for migrating to the ‘Leading Edge.’ Since many AR VPs and Directors have not been asked to develop a long-term strategic vision or prove AR’s value in the past, a good place to begin might be educating themselves about the issues and techniques.

BTW, here at SageCircle we prefer the terms “best-in-class” or “leading edge” over “world class” because they take into account the different situations that AR programs find themselves in. For example, best-in-class or leading edge labels permits us to look at markets (e.g., software vs. services), maturity (startup vs. mature) and size (a $200m run rate vs. $20 billion). Whereas world class implies the best regardless of circumstances, our labels gives us the flexibility to define the standards different for a global tech behemoth and an emerging technology startup. However, the term “world class” is very common and popular so we use that as well.

SageCircle Technique:

  • Develop a vision for where the AR program will be in two to four years
  • Start incorporating appropriate investments in the AR Strategic & Tactical Plan

Bottom Line: Many AR directors want to evolve their programs to “Leading Edge” status, providing competitive sales advantage to their companies. In order to make the transition to “Leading Edge,” AR programs need to include a long-term vision in their AR Strategic & Tactical Plans.

Question: Are you exclusively focused on the immediate AR activities?

 

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  1. […] Transitioning to leading-edge AR: It’s in the plan […]

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