With over 100,000 visitors Mobile World Congress Barcelona 2019 (MWCB 19) isn’t just the year’s biggest event for mobility and communications. Cloud, AI, IoT and other B2B tech initiatives reply on intelligent connectivity. That’s why MWCB19 will be the world’s biggest gathering of industry analyst firms.
Both powerhouse firms, like Tata and Oracle, and category leaders like Accedian, HERE and RingCentral will use MWCB19 to build relationships, and co-create thought leadership, with analysts and influencers. It’s competitive and hectic: Industry analysts play a crucial role in the marketing sales cycle and supplier selection. CCgroup staffed over 100 briefings at MWC18, and our clients’ focus on analysts seems even greater at MWCB19. That’s largely down to analysts’ increasing influence. CCgroup’s Catalyst Insights now show that when it comes to shortlisting vendors for an RFP, B2B tech buyers place analysts in their top three most valued sources.
Analysts use MWCB19 to solidify relationships; build out and update knowledge of a sector; and gather intel on opportunities for future research and advisory work. They ingest huge amounts of information that is condensed into myriad content, like blogs and reports, and spoken interactions with channel partners, enterprises, Investors, operators, and regulators.
Analysts plan their Congress schedules early. Unlike their journalist counterparts, they are not tied in the same way to a breaking news agenda. It’s therefore critical that you have a separate analyst relations outreach strategy for MWCB19, and get securing those face-to-face meetings now.
Here are a few tips from CCgroup’s analyst relations team to help ensure your strategy and activity has the right bandwidth to engage with global analysts:
The industries gathered at MWCB19 are a diverse pool of players. Leading analyst firms need to ensure that they speak to both established players, as well as up and coming providers. If you are new to MWCB19, make sure you are aware of the analysts who are closest to you.
In the run-up to the show, carry out regular analyst interactions, review target lists and ensure you are speaking to those analysts most crucial to your buying channels. Analysts don’t often jump ship, but it can be a very fluid community where remits change dependent on client demand.
If targeting analysts at MWCB19 is a major focus, be aware that diaries fill up quickly. Scheduling should ideally start before Christmas.
Be clear on what you can offer an analyst in terms of spokesperson time or material before reaching out. Develop proof points as early as you can. Prepare tailored presentations for them at the show to ensure you stay relevant and structured. Don’t rely on your ‘standard’ media deck, or a high-level marketing presentation. Analysts will remember something that gives them a deeper level of understanding of business challenges and successes.
Focus is key. And as an analyst covering mobile infrastructure and security told us, when it comes to MWCB, meetings at the show are only skin-deep.
“In the interests of time I can only meet on the ground with companies that are directly relevant to what I’m working on (as an analyst). We’re simply not likely to prioritise companies with whom we do little business with outside of MWC, and, these introductory meetings are usually only conducted at a very high level anyway.”
Be relevant but ask burning questions
This comes back to the importance of initial targeting. Be certain you are briefing the right analysts who specialise in your sector and know in advance what research they do.
Don’t be afraid to ask analysts questions pertinent to your focus: they are experts after all, and in most cases, will be happy to share their thoughts and opinion. This applies as much to the market as it does your own strategy.
That said, do accept that analysts work for commercial organisations. They can deliver enormous value to your organisation if leveraged in the right way. Keep their views in mind for future research studies, content marketing or white papers. Their insightful feedback can be extremely valuable to drive broader thought leadership and conversation.
It’s not all about Mobile World Congress
Too many companies place too great an emphasis on the event itself as the only time to proactively court analyst attention. But the truth is analyst research calendars and consultancy projects carry on throughout the year.
Remember analysts themselves treat MWC briefings more as an opportunity to build and update their knowledge of a sector, not to write quick bits of content. Their views are developed over a long-time period, and though it may disappoint your senior leadership you should consider whether a briefing is best saved for another time or place.
Use introductory meetings at MWC to establish an analyst relationship. Then use the follow up period after Barcelona to cement it. Ensure the relationship thrives with a regular cadence of scheduled updates and meetings over the course of a calendar year.