Seth Godin recently pointed out the benefit of focusing on just one thing — being a “wallah” — as opposed to trying to do a little bit of everything. Being a wallah means focusing on excelling in one particular area of business. That strikes a chord with me and the evolution I see for analyst relations within tech marketing.
Today, most people see analyst relations as being all about the analysts. If you do analyst relations, they see you as the analyst wallah. You get the analysts to think, say and publish positions that benefit your business objectives. And you bring information back from the analysts that benefit your business objectives.
What I foresee is a shift from being the analyst wallah to being the relations wallah. Getting people across the company to build mutually beneficial 1-to-1 relationships with different kinds of decision-maker influencers. You mentor and support and measure the relationships that benefit your business objectives.
AR will continue to play a vital role in tech companies for years to come. Applying the AR skill set not only to analysts but also more broadly is a logical evolution for this role. For each of us it comes down to this: What kind of wallah do you want to be?