The Silicon Valley chapter of the AMA is teaming up with HP Analyst Relations for an evening focused on what’s working and what’s not working in marketing today. Rohit Bhargava will keynote, then moderate a panel of HP and Intel marketers.
Rohit publishes the Influential Marketing Blog, ranked among the top 50 marketing blogs in the world, and has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, BusinessWeek, and other global media. He is a frequent keynote speaker on marketing and business and is commonly recognized as the creator of the new marketing concept Social Media Optimization (SMO).
Cost is $30 and up. Networking, food and cocktails start at 5:30pm. More info at SVAMA.org. See you there!
It’s easy to get caught up in what to say, how to say it — even how many characters to say it in — and completely lose sight of the simple truth that our words are just words, unless they’re backed by actions.
This is certainly not a new idea. However, it’s being expressed by lots of different people right now. Everyone has a different context. Witness:
Seth Godin talks to it in terms of authenticity.
Greg Cordell talks about it in terms of love.
Duncan Brown touches on it in terms of what makes a good analyst.
We’re all facing the same tough year. Maybe this is a good time to take stock of ourselves and the people we trust. Ask some of the hard questions. Look for the proof points. See who measures up while the chips are down.
I know, I know, the good gentleman from our UK office deplores lists. I like lists. Here’s one that’s useful for many of us who analyze influencers and aspire to be influential: Bob Decker’s list of the top 10 best and 10 worst communicators for 2008.
The list is completely subjective. There’s no science behind it, no magic. Yet IMHO, it’s one of the best lists of its kind for 2008.
I see several common denominators among the people who made Bob’s lists. Perhaps the most important are authenticity, commitment and fearlessness.
These characteristics contributed to the success of the best communicators — including Barack Obama, Randy Pausch and Colin Powell.
Interestingly, they also figured prominently in the backstories of the worst communicators. Richard Fuld might have fared better were he less authentic. Most of the group landed on the list for their lack of authenticity, commitment and fearlessness.
It’s that time of year again. Time to decide which industry analysts called the shots, gave the answers, and made the time often enough to earn an IT research and advisory contract for 2007. My advice to analysts this year: publish proof points showing your accuracy, timeliness, objectivity, engagement. Put forward some well researched — not just well rehearsed — reasons for us to believe.
Analyst bashups, in general, are nothing new. Historically, the most damage was done by competitive sales teams and word of mouth — the kind of thing you find in any industry. A few journalists would take the time to sleuth planned budgets or controversial practices, and that was pretty much the extent of it.
Blogs have changed the old analyst bashups. More people than ever are publishing anecdotes about smart and not-so-smart analyst opinions, research, forecasts.
Some examples of what’s out there, how easy it is to find:
- Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff apparently told the London City Show audience that he listens to Ovum’s Bradshaw, because Bradshaw knows his stuff and called it right more consistently than Gartner or Forrester. His endorsement went far beyond the back of the room. It was reported by Salesforce.com ISV Gareth Davies in his blog, Where’s the Upside?, and relayed in James Governor’s blog, MonkChips. I found it there via my FeedDemon RSS channel of favorite analyst blogs.
- Todd Defren, a principal at PR agency SHIFT Communications, spins a typical sour-grapes anecdote about Gartner Magic Quadrants into an open call for bashups about Gartner and any/all analysts at his pr-squared blog. I found it via a simple Technorati search for blog posts on Gartner and Magic Quadrants.
- Telephia suffered collateral damage in the Cingular/Sprint Nextel/Verizon cell phone network war. Blog spin of a NY Times article describing Telephia’s involvement in Cingular advertising claims (”fewest dropped calls”) included mopocket.com, and engadget mobile. As with most posts at engadget, this one was picked up by a half dozen other blogs in addition to the numerous RSS feed aggregators. Boston Globe’s story resulted in its own cascade of blog coverage, such as Joho the Blog and WebProNews.com. I found these using a Google blog search for background on the Telephia lawsuit against M:Metrics.
These are just a few examples of the reverb going on out here. This doesn’t even take into account dedicated analyst-watching bloggers, such as GartnerWatch and ARmadgeddon, or enterprise IT bloggers such as James McGovern blogging at Enterprise Architecture: Thought Leadership.
Plus, you’ve got all the blogs relaying that usual sprinkling of investigative reporting I mentioned earlier. A recent example: Computerworld New Zealand’s forum piece questioning research transparency and objectivity. This came to my attention via a reader who chose to remain anonymous. Talk about irony. Still, I followed the link and bookmarked it.
My point is that the critics are not just a few Fortune 100 directors on the back nine, or a band of trolls piping through anonymous proxy servers. Whether you need to see this as a tipping point or an inflection point, just get the point:
Analyst, research thyself and share thy findings.
As always, I hope you’ll voice your opinion on my opinion at the Tekrati blog.
Reprinted from Tekrati.
Editor’s note: Description of Marc Benioff comments were revised, per comments posted at Tekrati blog.