ARcade » Digital AR Weblog maintained by Hill+Knowlton Strategies\' global Analyst Relations team. Wed, 30 Nov 2011 02:40:13 +0000 en hourly 1 Speaking at Forrester AR CouncilTel on Digital AR This Thursday Tue, 27 Oct 2009 21:00:10 +0000 Ruth Busbee

Technology purchase decisions are impacted through a variety of communication channels—digital, analysts, media, word of mouth and others—and the influence of those channels is merging. We’re going to be discussing why it’s critical to understand the rapidly evolving influence industry analysts have on sales and reputation through digital channels such as blogs, Twitter, social networking, and vendor web sites.


This Thursday morning (October 29 at 8:30 am PT), I’ll be presenting at the October Forrester AR CouncilTel with my boss, and H&K Global Tech Practice lead Josh Reynolds. What questions do you have about Digital AR that we should address?


Looking forward to your questions. I can be found on Twitter @ruthbusbee.


P.S. If you’re not a member of the Forrester AR Council and would like more information about the group, please email



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Chatting with Gartner Tue, 05 May 2009 17:58:42 +0000 Jay Andersen Last week our US-based analyst relations team spent a lively hour with Jenni Lehman, Group VP in Gartner Research, when she visited our offices to talk about the firm’s research structure, social media policies, and whom to call when things turn south.

If you haven’t met Jenni, she is responsible for research operations including the functions of Research Methodology, Research Agenda Management, Primary Research, Secondary Research, Global Editing, Research Engagement Scheduling, Research Events Programs, Research Workforce Development and Research Business Operations.  Jenni explained how Gartner has six other GVPs of research who have oversight of markets including Servers & Storage, IT Operations, Business Intelligence, etc. while she is charged with creating the framework for repeatable and high-quality research. Yes, her plate is a full one. And yes Gartner pays close attention to how research is created and developed. I might have coined a new acronym when I asked her how their recently launched CCA (Critical Capabilities Analysis) methodology was going. After explaining what I meant (I guess nobody other than me refers to them as CCA), Jenni let us know that client response has been strong and that more than 20 are planned for 2009. We’re curious to hear if anyone out there has had any experience working on a CCA (there I said it again!). She also confirmed that Hype Cycles are one of the most-often downloaded research documents at

While some have rightly criticized Gartner for being slow to have a blogging and Twitter presence, the firm is now embracing digital. Gartner has established a clear set of guidelines for their analysts to follow including avoid inflammatory subjects, don’t post information and advice for which clients pay Gartner, protect and enhance the value of the Gartner brand, and be personable and have fun. The link for their policy can be found here. As a long-time Gartner client we appreciate the fact that they are respecting our rights and not giving away one of our competitive advantages. Gartner has a number of active Twitterers which can be found here. We are encouraged to see Gartner join the conversation on Twitter and in the blogosphere. Jenni mentioned one interesting side effect of social media; analysts sometimes blog about subject areas outside of their core focus. When they do, they need to be careful that what they post does not contradict what Gartner has officially written on the subject. It might be a good best practice to search across the Gartner blog network to see if analysts you don’t normally follow are writing about your company or market. And finally, Jenni confirmed our suspicion that Gartner tracks blog readership to see which analysts are getting the most hits. A little friendly competition amongst the analyst ranks is alive and well.

And finally we talked about the role of Ombudsman, which Jenni referred to as Gartner’s Switzerland. If a vendor has an issue with published research, including blogs and Twitter posts, they are urged to take it up with the Ombudsman to address the issue. The Ombudsman’s main goal is to be responsive to end-user and vendor issues to maintain the company’s integrity, evaluate research for balance and objectivity, and deliver visibility into Gartner’s research process. It’s a lofty goal and our team has experience with the process. We’d be interested in hearing about anyone else’s experience.

Overall it was a great meeting; as an AR professional with a library research background I found it a fascinating look at what goes on behind the scenes at Gartner research. We’re hoping to meet with other folks responsible for research agenda at other leading industry research firms. Stay tuned!

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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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Is this the future of analyst relations? Tue, 28 Apr 2009 15:53:35 +0000 Ruth Busbee Digital AR. I’ve heard that term tossed around a lot in the last few months. We’re asked by our clients and colleagues what analysts are using digital communications channels, how they’re using them, and most commonly – what do I need to do, as an AR professional, to understand and utilize these channels? Good analyst relations professionals need to understand the evolving nuances of how relationships can be strengthened as more analysts engage through digital channels.

There’s no doubt that the role of AR manager is changing as social media is becoming more used by industry analysts. Jeremiah Owyang, one of Forrester’s social media analysts blogged last Friday about When Analyst Relations Get Social. He offered several ways AR professionals are changing and summed it up with “What’s the theme here? The role hasn’t changed that much in the traditional sense, but the AR professional isn’t a gatekeeper, instead they facilitate.”

I think good analyst relations managers have always facilitated and not been gatekeepers.  Social media interactions allow another touch point for AR managers and those they manage to connect with analysts on both personal and professional levels. AR managers need to understand how their spokespeople, customers and colleagues are interacting with analysts through digital channels and provide guidance and guidelines to help create or continue a productive relationship.

The basics of smart AR remain the same-inquiry and listening, engaging in dialogue around issues, prioritizing and looking for efficiencies of scale, maintaining meaningful relationships, and being smart about metrics. But now there are digital options for each, and before you dive in, the first step is to find out how your analysts-and your customers-are engaging online.

While I don’t think Digital AR will replace traditional AR – there is a need to evolve AR programs and increase understanding of this communications channel. How are you evolving?

Here at H&K, our AR team has developed a methodology and built best practices around Digital AR. Please contact me if you want to continue this discussion. You can also follow me on Twitter @ruthbusbee!

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