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How do startups use industry analysts for growth?

Updated: Sep 9

The University of Edinburgh Business School runs a fascinating new research project. Are B2B tech startups able to leverage industry analysts in their race for market breakthrough? What are success patterns? Startups, VCs, Accelerators and Analysts around the world are gathering data for a first-of-its-kind report.



Analyst relations as a business function is one of the most “under the radar” and critical success factors in b2b tech. Analysts like Gartner, Forrester or IDC are consistently highlighted as top influencers of technology and buying decisions. Hence, leading vendors make sure that industry analysts know and understand their offerings.

But are start-ups and scale-ups aware of this part of the playing field? How do they use it in their race for market breakthrough? What are the success patterns?

Chris Holscher, initiator of the research project, explains:

“Analyst relations practitioners and leading VCs agree that innovators benefit most from early and strategic involvement of industry analysts. North American startups appear to have developed an edge over European competitors here. But this field has never been comprehensively analyzed. - Until now.”

The University of Edinburgh Business School and a group of analyst relations specialists are asking young companies on both sides of the Atlantic and globally about their work with industry analysts.

Professor Neil Pollock, leads the“Entrepreneurship and Innovation” research at the UoE Business School. He explains:

“We have lots of anecdotal evidence already - now we want the broadest possible basis of hard data. The views from startups that have no experience with analyst relations yet are just as important to us as the views from those who have worked with analysts already. In addition we also gather the perspectives from VCs, accelerators and analysts themselves to get the first-of-its-kind 360° view on the topic.”

Robin Schaffer, co-lead and representing the North America perspective of the project, is excited:

“Early feedback has been phenomenal. No matter who we’ve reached out to, everyone agrees that this needs to be explored and may reveal key discoveries for all involved in the b2b tech startup ecosystem.”

The survey is now live and the research team is working to get it into as many hands as possible. Results are expected in early 2022. All participants will get invitations to webinars that explain the findings.

Chris Holscher again:

“We can only do this with you - experienced with analysts or not: Make your voice heard and you’ll be the first to get the insights.”

Take the 10-min startup / scaleup survey now!

If you are an investor, accelerator, analyst or other player in the b2b tech ecosystem, please contact Chris Holscher (Europe) or Robin Schaffer (North America) for links to the ecosystem-specific versions of the survey.

Thank you!


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