14 things you need to know about analyst interactions

My colleague Elena Georgieva gave a great Lunch and Learn talk to CCgroup colleagues recently. I tweeted the highlights and, wow, it’s enough to make a blog post!

CCgroup’s Elena Georgieva
  1. A briefing is a great way to inform both analysts, and analyst research, on provider updates and market disruptions.
  2. Analysts may know less than spokespeople expect them to. They are primarily to educate analysts, not spokespeople.
  3. Analyst Days can showcase strategy, solutions, and draw in executive spokespeople, customers, partners and topic-experts, both in plenaries and 1-2-1.
  4. Analyst Days are costly, but they allow greater intimacy, undivided attention [especially valuable for often-overlooked firms] and exclusive insights into the future than a half-hour briefing can.
  5. Analyst visits and tours, going to their offices, can be especially powerful if your executives are already visiting global analyst hubs like London or Boston.
  6. A different cadence of calls and webinars gives different experiences to analysts with differing levels of business impact. Webinars are especially useful with geographically-distributed analysts.
  7. Multi-analyst webinars can be challenging (especially for third- or fourth-tier analysts for whom this is the only interaction). Drop-out rates can be high unless its valuable information. They can allow insightful moderated discussion, but relationships are invaluable.
  8. Online tools like portals and newsletters concentrate multiple content items in an easy-to-access format.
  9. Be friendly, not formal, with analysts. Be brief: no to marketing puff, over-claiming or an extensive journo-type pitch.
  10. Analysts have full days, so it’s hard to stand out in a briefing. Spokespeople can be taught to get to the point crisply, highlight solution value and make sure they answer analysts’ questions.
  11. Analysts will ask questions in a briefing if they don’t understand something. No questions can signal that the analyst is engaged and grasps the content well.
  12. Analysts’ major benchmarking reports both chart major plays and will have passing mentions of point players. Draft reviews are for fact checks: too late to change perceptions.
  13. NDAs are often time-limited, like PR embargoes. Even outside formal NDAs, analysts generally honour oral requests not to disclose information.
  14. War story: one vendor asked analysts to sign an NDA with a liability of $5m. In practice, hard to enforce and damages the relationship. Oral requests are enough to secure confidentiality.