How to leverage Industry Analysts during a launch
Whenever product managers talk about Industry Analysts, and by this I mean the analysts at Gartner, Forrester, Yankee, the same comment surfaces; “I don’t think we’ve subscribed to their service”. In some cases this is important, in most it isn’t. The analysts want to know what you’re doing. The analysts need to know what you’re doing. Don’t ever think that they don’t care because they do and, with most analysts, the business side of the business is managed by someone else.
One of the best analysts ever was once quoted as saying, “I’ve got the greatest gig in the world. The vendors pay me so that they can tell me what they’re doing and the companies pay me to tell them what the vendors are doing.” This is the nature of the beast but the bottom line is you cannot be successful in launching anything in the technology space – specifically into the enterprise market – without analyst visibility.
How, can you get this done? Simple. There are three basic steps you need to follow in getting your product launch visibility into this community.
- First, be prepared to articulate verbally or in an e-mail the compelling story around your launch. Make sure that what you’re proposing has a sense of importance and urgency around the analyst getting visibility to the story.
- Second, be persistent with the analysts. Everyone wants face time with them. Take your daily email load and multiply it by 10. That’s what they are faced with daily. Call them daily – without being obnoxious. Leverage people you know who know them. If you have a PR resource, get them in the fight as well. Keep going, eventually they will crack. Key rule – don’t give up.
- Finally, if at all possible be prepared to travel to get face time. Go anywhere they are. If their office is in Timbuktu, commit to the flight. Face time is critical because you may not get a sense as to how they are feeling over the phone. It’s also all about relationships and as everyone knows telephone relationships are not as satisfying as the one’s you have in person. At least that’s what I hear.
Last note on this, hit them all. Even if an analyst is pay for play, hit them, because they talk to a lot of people and you never know how they can help you. It’s all about building momentum and these guys and gals are key.
Well, you’ve got the meetings you need. What do you do next? Your product’s success and your career in the industry are now on the line. Don’t worry. Want to know what to do? Let’s talk about that later in the month.
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