This week Efrem Mallach and I have been looking at some of the data that we’ll be presenting at the AR Forum in London. One of the top issues for many AR teams is understanding analysts in growth markets, and specially in the Asia-Pacific region.
There are now the best part of a thousand analysts across APac, and no country is home to more than a couple of hundred. Fewer than half of the region’s analysts are in the two main countries (India and China).
That makes AR in Asia-Pacific very different from AR in the Americas (where 80%+ analysts are in the US and Canada) or the EMEA (where analysts are similarly concentrated in the UK and Germany). In fact AR programmes in APJ face the challenge of working across more than a dozen countries, and the complication that many local firms work in local languages. Because many vendors work in English and don’t have AR team members with local languages, that often means that AR programmes in the region focus on the global firms’ offices in the region, skipping over locally-headquartered analysts.
A further complicating factor is the role of offshoring; where firms like Frost & Sullivan, Gartner and IDC are very large in the APJ region because of work being done for clients elsewhere in the world.
As a result, there’s a substantial disconnect between where the analysts are in APJ and where the AR professionals are. For example, there are more analysts in Japan than in Singapore, but not more AR professionals: the same can be said about Hong Kong and Korea, Taiwan or Malaysia.
This produces an additional series of national micro-climates for AR, where analysts in Australia, Singapore and Hong Kong get much more attention from international vendors than those in more dynamic markets, such as, China and Japan.
In the short-term, few vendors are going to realign their resources dramatically in the region. That produces a substantial competitive opportunity: vendors who build close relationships now with locally-headquartered analyst firms will find that those analysts are less communicated with and are thus easier to build relationships with.
PS To discover where this leads, read why Asia-Pacific customers’ different needs demand different AR .