Since writing on analysts and bloggers I’ve had some more thoughts and a lot of feedback, some of which is incorporated below. This blog has stimulated quite a few reactions, and I encourage readers to look at Dean and Dan’s comments here.
Pretty much everyone agrees that vendor-oriented market exposure is the primary motive for the analyst blogging going on today, and that firms with a large end-user client base like Gartner are being rational — for a number of substantive reasons — for not jumping in. However, there are additional thoughts for analysts’ motives on blogging –
- 1) Declarative living. For example, it’s a coincidence that the blogger happens to be an analyst, he’s really blogging to whinge about how much he hates business travel.
- 2) Professional peer networking. For example, trading technical thinking with a small group of peers in IT, vendors, or academia who flourish in their technical niche. Those motives of the analyst-cum-blogger are personal, not driven by the firm’s agenda.
- 3] Defensive motives. Where firms ‘blogwash’ themselves to avoid being erroneously labelled as a ‘social media laggard’ by small-scale competitors who can only advance their own agendas by taking the incumbents down a notch. These would be faux-blogs, not serious contributions to discourse.
I’ve also been involved in a fascinating discussion about blogger relations, and been pointed to a few articles which tie into some of these themes. They are best read in the following, chronological, order.
Duncan, I enjoyed your original post about bloggers versus analysts, and the discussion that ensued in the comments. As an independent analyst who also has a consulting practice with end-customer organizations, my reasons for blogging are similar to Dean Bubley (who commented on your original post): it creates a wider audience for my opinions and therefore drives business; it provides a platform for getting opinions and research out earlier than a more formal white paper process; I enjoy writing as a part of the creative process; and it helps to strengthen my professional network with those with similar interests, wherever they might be.
Although I know that a lot of vendors read my blog, the audience that I’m targetting is really end-user organizations. I do a lot of “reporting” type blogging from conferences, as well as some number of product reviews. Although I do cover some of my “declarative living” topics on my blog, I leave most of those for other channels, since my blog is intended to be part of my business marketing exposure to the world, and needs to be managed appropriately.