Welcome members of Forrester’s AR Council. Here are those steps A through F that I rattled off at the beinging of the panel. I also put in links to directories of analysts blogs and Don Bulmer’s blog. If the session ran out before we got to your question or you want more depth, leave your question as a comment and I’ll answer it.
In case you’re wondering what this is post is about, today SageCircle’s Carter Lusher was a member of the “Analyst Relations 2.0” panel at the Forrester Analyst Relations Council (ARC) meeting, which was co-located with Forrester’s IT Forum. The focus of the discussion was on analyst blogs and how AR teams need to think about them. Other members of the panel included analysts Jonathan Eunice from Illuminata and Dana Gardner from Interarbor Solutions. Besides Carter on the AR services side was KCG’s Bill Hopkins (Tekrati’s Barbara French could not make the meeting so Bill took her place). The whole circus was moderated by Forrester VP Laura Ramos. The panel and audience discussion was quite lively, fun, and raised a number of issues.
One of the requests by panel organizer Trisha Mirel was that we give the AR managers in attendance a list of practical action items to start incorporating analyst blogs into how they work. Obviously, this is something SageCircle has covered on a number of occasions (see our series of posts on social media). The more important recommendation is that interacting with analysts via their blogs should be part of an overall social media plan incorporated into the strategic AR plan. Getting started is quite simple with a few steps that go from A to F: ask… begin… conduct… develop… educate… forward…
- A = Ask your top analysts about their current or planned blogs, either under personal or firm brands
A = Ask you customers about where they go for information and advice for product decisions
- B = Begin to add analyst blogs to your overall AR plan, especially the analyst opinion monitoring program
- C = Conduct a written word audit of relevant analyst blogs including links from other blogs to get up-to-speed
- D = Develop policies for how your company will respond to analyst blogs and a portfolio of authorized spokespeople
- E = Educate company spokespeople about blogging policies and best practices
- F = Forward to Sales and executives information about blogging analysts and what to expect
Directories of analyst blogs:
I also mentioned that Don Bulmer, SAP’s VP of Influencer Relations, has an interesting blog. It is Everyday Influence. Well worth checking out.
Bottom Line: While individual analysts might not blog, the issue of analyst blogging is here to stay. The sooner AR starts to incorporate analyst blogs into their overall AR plan and daily activities the better equipped AR will be to avoid surprises and potential executives’ wrath.
Question: Have you been blindsided by something an analyst has written about in a blog? Has a sales deal been derailed due to analyst commentary in a blog?
Do you need to create an AR strategic and tactical plan that incorporates social media? Are you thinking about experimenting with social media? SageCircle can Help – Social media represents new opportunities and challenges to AR teams. SageCircle can help AR teams by:
- Providing on-site or distance learning sessions to get AR teams up to speed on social media and how it might be adopted
- Acting as a sounding board as you brainstorm how to add social media to the AR tool box
- Advising on how to develop a pilot program to experiment with social media
- Playing the role of analyst in social media experiments and providing critiques of how the experiment went
- Through our AR Plan Builder workshop, strategists can help create AR plans that incorporate social media
Call 650-274-8309 or e-mail info (at) sagecircle dot com for more information. Also follow Carter’s commentary www.twitter.com/carterlusher to get a feel for how information is now being transmitted using micro-blogging.