ARcade » Analyst Relations Tools Weblog maintained by Hill+Knowlton Strategies\' global Analyst Relations team. Wed, 30 Nov 2011 02:40:13 +0000 en hourly 1 100 Best Outsourcing and Offshoring Blogs & Resources Tue, 05 May 2009 14:05:14 +0000 Dominic Pannell My colleague Agi just forwarded me this list of outsourcing/offshoring blogs, which she spotted on a tweet by Mark Hillary.

While it’s clearly subjective (why 100 and not 150?) and there isn’t any attempt to rank the list, the author Tamara does give a short indication of why a site has been included, which adds considerably to the value of the resource.

There are several sections: type of outsourcing, geographical location, etc. although I’m afraid to say that there isn’t yet anything specifically relating to offshoring to the Middle East. Must see what we can do on that front.

It’s a useful list, which I thought I would share.


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Mastering the Hype Cycle – new book by Gartner Wed, 17 Sep 2008 20:42:00 +0000 Dominic Pannell Gartner analysts Jackie Fenn and Mark Raskino have written a book on the Hype Cycle, which is the series of signature research that Gartner’s clients read the most.

Jackie created the first ‘Hype Cycle of Emerging Technologies’ in 1995 and has been refining them in the 13 years since. In the original, the “Information Superhighway” was tumbling down towards the trough of disillusionment where handwriting recognition was already languishing and intelligent agents were at their most hyped. At H&K, we reckon Jackie was pretty much spot on.

Jackie and Mark have also started a blog around the launch of their book, which is worth reading as it already contains useful insights relating to various cycles.

Flatteringly, in their latest post Jackie references the Clean Tech Hype Cycle that Josh Reynolds published in June (and which I cross-posted here). As Jackie says, the
hype cycle really isn’t about technology, but about the human reaction
to anything new – in particular the mismatch between expectations and
we couldn’t agree more – we use hype cycles internally as a marketing planning tool in various divisions, whether or not they relate to technology.

We also debate hype cycles with clients who also subscribe to Gartner and can therefore access the reports – used carefully, this really helps both sides to understand the real business goals and to match communications objectives accordingly.

Personally, I can hardly wait to read the book, which I’ve had on pre-order for weeks now!

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Latest news from Twitter: Forrester hires a Senior Analyst Fri, 27 Jun 2008 11:32:00 +0000 Dominic Pannell Peter Kim tweets that Forrester Research has filled a vacant position and will soon be announcing an analyst to cover social computing. Who says Twitter is useless?

Carter’s Analyst Twitter Directory currently lists 104 analyst accounts and that doesn’t include the AR folks who also use the medium.

Personally, I find Twitter to be a very useful tool for my work – it allows me to loosely follow several analysts whose work is highly relevant to my clients, thus keeping an eye on their current research interests and allowing me to flag interesting developments. I’m then able to act where necessary using more traditional communications methods (is it correct to refer to the phone and email as ‘traditional’, I wonder?).

Yes, it’s not all serious, yes I admit that I do tweet about rugby matches that I’m watching and yes, I have been known to tell my 81 followers what I’m eating. No, it’s not everybody’s cup of tea.

Nobody’s forcing to anybody to sign up. All I’m saying is that I find it helpful. 

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Gartner Quarterly Analyst Relations Call Tue, 03 Jul 2007 16:41:00 +0000 Melissa Grant On Wednesday, June 20th Gartner held their quarterly analyst relations call on the topic of “Get the Most Out of Your Relationship with Gartner.”  Similar content was presented at the AR Forum at Spring Symposium and could easily be titled “don’t waste our time and we won’t waste yours.” 
Analyst Gareth Herschel presented Gartner’s best practices for analyst
interactions, focused primarily on vendor briefings.  While several of
Gartner’s recommendations are rendered near-impossible by the very
structure of the firm, there were quite a few important take-aways from
the call.

Gartner emphasized that a compelling and useful vendor briefing should:

  • Inform the analyst of an available solution that addresses market needs and current client problems.
  • Indicate to the analyst when they should be talking about your product and when they should not.
  • Focus on strategic intent; explain how this solution, product,
    partnership or vision furthers your company’s business and technology
  • Present REAL differentiators; if you are the best in the market, back
    it up with numbers, otherwise the only true differentiators are things
    your company can claim that no one else can.

In support of these goals, and to make analysts’ lives easier, Gartner reminds vendors to ensure that they:

  • Give a frame of reference for where the spokesperson/solution fits in the company in the form of a short overview.
  • Provide timeframes, updated product roadmaps and go-to-market strategy.
  • Create decks that have no more than 20 SPH (slides per hour) although appendixes with detailed information are welcome.
  • Ask which other analysts would be interested; internal information sharing is somewhat informal.
  • Plan briefings far in advance; quarterly update briefings and product announcements.

last recommendation brings us to the challenges presented by Gartner
itself in achieving the vendor briefing perfection that this call
sought to guide AR specialists towards; namely, dealing with the Vendor
Briefings (VB) organization.  Participants on the call posed questions
about how to schedule briefings far in advance when analysts’ calendars
are not available, analyst participants aren’t guaranteed and the NDA
policy is somewhat wishy-washy.  Similar concerns were loudly aired at
the AR Forum in May and were met with the assurance that the Vendor
Briefings team is “completely client service focused” and the process
is just fine as is. 

Despite this perspective, we recommend the following best practices when scheduling vendor briefings with Gartner:

  • Conduct inquiries with the analysts that are at the top of your
    briefing target list.  This not only better prepares your spokespeople
    by informing them of what the analyst is currently researching, what
    they see as the most important market trends and what competitors are
    on their radar screen, it is also acts as stepping stone to the
    briefing.  Then when your name, company and topic come up in an invite
    from VB, it’s not out of left field and they are more likely to make
    time for you.
  • Consider doing multiple briefings to cover all analysts in the space. 
    Getting 15 analysts on the phone at one time just isn’t always possible
    or practical.  Brief your core people first and foremost and then be
    flexible with additional briefings, it may take a few weeks to get to
  • Press your product people for real dates for launches and roadmaps you
    can count on.  There’s nothing like being asked to schedule a briefing
    with in-demand analysts a week before a launch you had no idea was
    coming up OR doing a big splashy briefing and then not being able to
    follow-up it up with demos or customer references.
  • Take on the housekeeping details yourself.  This includes conducting
    dry runs of the presentation, guiding slide deck edits, sending decks
    to analysts and VB directly, asking analysts about upcoming research,
    preparing smart questions to ask during the briefing, asking about
    other analysts you should be talking to, recapping follow-up items
    during the briefing and following up on them directly with the analysts or as requested.
  • Be clear about your NDA or embargo needs; unless you say otherwise,
    Gartner analysts WILL assume that this information can be shared
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Top 50 analyst bloggers Tue, 19 Jun 2007 16:21:00 +0000 Dominic Pannell A bit of fun from Jonny Bentwood over at Edelman’s AR practice: he’s put together a list of the top 50 analyst bloggers.

Now, some of the criteria strikes me as a little dodgy (mainly because the tools that measure blogs aren’t transparent) and Bloglines tells me that Nate Elliot has 179 subscribers, as opposed to James Governor’s 114, yet Jonny gives James the nod on that part of the survey, what’s more Mr Bentwood acknowledges there’s something fishy about Charlene Li’s place in the results, but it’s still interesting.

I’m a firm believer in having a go and then working to improve the quality of the results down the line (probably something to do with the anchoring and adjusting techniques I learned on my MBA). Jonny has made a first stab at measuring which analyst bloggers are influential and now it’s a question of fine-tuning. Personally I’m going to stick this under the noses of our Digital team and see what they make of it.

What’s particularly nice is that he’s giving away copies of his results. Thanks Jonny.

EDIT: It was remiss of me not to acknowledge that James (see his comment below) brought Jonny’s blog post to my attention. Thanks JG! /EDIT

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All The Analysts dot com Thu, 24 May 2007 17:04:00 +0000 Dominic Pannell Thanks to my colleague Jonathan Yarmis for flagging to the rest of the global team (I would have let him post about it, but right now ARcade is in danger of becoming the ‘Jonathan Show’ so I’m grabbing the opportunity).

All The Analysts is a new web-based search engine that claims to “search everything from the big industry firms, such as Gartner, down to specialist independent analysts to find the most relevant reports for your needs” – it’s free too, at least while it’s in development phase. “New services” are being worked on, however, and the implication is that some of these will require payment. Hopefully one future feature will be a date filter.

At first glance, it looks like a helpful tool to add to the analyst relations armoury. There’s not much information, however, on how the engine accesses analysts’ websites or how many it does, so the only way to gauge the completeness of its searching is to perform parallel searches, i.e. search on ‘ATA’ and search on research firms’ websites as well, which means it’s too early to make a recommendation to use it or not.

The few searches I’ve had time to run have returned reports published by Aberdeen, Datamonitor, Forrester, Gartner, IDC and Outsell, although I couldn’t find (an admittedly very recent) one by Datamonitor, whch suggests that there is a time lag between publication on an analyst firm’s website and ‘ATA’ picking it up.

I couldn’t find much information on who’s behind the search tool, either – something that always irritates me greatly. A WHOIS search (result below) reveals only that it’s being hosted in the UK, but that doesn’t mean much in these days of global business.

   Whois Server:
   Referral URL:
   Status: ok
   Updated Date: 17-feb-2007
   Creation Date: 07-feb-2007
   Expiration Date: 07-feb-2008

I for one hope that All The Analysts checks out since the task of searching on analysts websites, whether or not we subscribe to their research, is onerous; anything that cuts down on that task is welcome.

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