Building and maintaining analyst relationships is key to the success of many B2B businesses.

In this blog series, we’ll walk you through how Kapost manages our analyst relations—not only building relationships, but also measuring the success of these relationships.

Last week, we shared how we see the analyst relationship life cycle. Now that we understand what the relationship life cycle looks like, we can begin identifying key analysts in your industry.

Using a Four-Tiered System

Before conducting any analyst outreach, it’s essential to determine which analysts a) cover your product’s solution and b) will create the most value from outreach. We recommend creating a four-tiered system. At Kapost we use the letters A through D.

Anyone who makes a tier should be considered a target analyst, with the most important analyst being at tier “A.” For Kapost, our top analysts reside at Forrester, Gartner, and SiriusDecisions—they provide the most research around marketing content and best hit our target audience.

Even within each of these firms, we have analysts who directly cover our segment (Laura Ramos, Jake Sorofman, and Erin Provey, respectively) and those who may touch on it but are not the main contact.

In addition to the “big three” for us, there are several smaller firms who don’t have as broad of a reach but still have significant impact on the market.

Determining the firms and analysts who cover your area of expertise gives you a clear picture of who is analyzing the market and whom you should be targeting.

Kapost has found that having a tiered approach is the best way to ensure that we’re keeping top-tier firms and analyses preeminent, while still regularly engaging with the rest of our specified analysts.

Creating a Point Scale

To evaluate the success of our analyst-relations endeavors, we created a 100-point scale to determine the health of each analyst relationship. Utilizing the identified life cycle, we broke out points for each action.

The health of the relationship for Kapost is monitored on a rolling, four-month point total. This time frame can be extended or shortened based on the extensiveness of your analyst relationships and the maturity of the market.

Given that Kapost is still in an emerging market, we are regularly communicating with analysts, reports are frequently written on the topic, and products are consistently evolving. More mature markets will require fewer meetings and may only have one or two major reports a year.

We identified the below point scale for Kapost analyst relations:

  • Engagement: 10 points
  • Self-initiated engagement: 15 points
  • Briefing: 30 points
  • Paid engagement: 5 points
  • Mention: 40 points

We purposefully left client recommendations off our scale, since we can’t consistently accurately measure it.

The point scale should be customized based on your existing analyst relationships. If your company is just beginning the process of analyst relations, perhaps the first three steps of the life cycle are the most important. If your company is well-established and in a mature market, a briefing might be most important, since you’re most likely reporting regularly but not actively communicating with analysts.

Determining Health Scores

Once we created a scale, we translated that into a health score. Ranging from “poor” to “excellent,” we developed the below breakout, which monitors the health of our analyst relationships:

  • Excellent: 61-100 points
  • Good: 51-60 points
  • Fair: 10-50 points
  • Poor: 0-9 points

Then we combine the analyst relationship life cycle with our point scale: a “poor” relationship indicates no interaction with the analyst, while having some back and forth and a briefing will move the analyst quickly to a “good” health rating. In order to get to an “excellent” rating, an analyst needs to mention Kapost in a report.

Again, this point range should be adjusted based on your point scale and current analyst relationships.

Now that we have set up our framework of an analyst relations approach, next week we will close our Analyzing Analyst Relations series with exploring how to build these relationships and measure the impact of the results.

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