How HCM Vendors Can Get the Most Out of Briefings

industry briefingsYou might have briefings on the brain after this week’s two announcements that George LaRocque has joined The Starr Conspiracy Intelligence Unit as director of go-to-market services and that The Starr Conspiracy will be accepting requests for briefings in a more official capacity. If you’re wondering how you can have successful briefings as an HCM vendor, check out the five tips below to get you started:

  1. Schedule briefings at each of the major, annual HCM events: If you have the opportunity and the access to scheduling briefings in the press room at events like SHRM and the annual HR Technology Conference & Exposition, be sure you take advantage of it by filling your agenda with analyst and blogger briefings.

  2. Be on time to your briefings: Some analysts and bloggers really care whether or not you’re on time, but it’s safe to say that it’s good practice to be on time to scheduled briefings with those that you want to know you. Don’t make them wait. At HCM events, sometimes the press and blogger lounges can be very far away from the main expo floor and they’re often tucked on another floor above or below the main conference events to keep the rooms quiet, so be sure you know where you’re going to make sure you arrive on time. If you’re conducting briefings virtually over video or audio conference, dial in a few minutes early to make sure you won’t be hindered by time-consuming technical difficulties. You don’t want the analyst or blogger you’re meeting with to remember you as the “one who couldn’t figure out GoToMeeting for 30 minutes.”

  3. Know who you’re meeting with: I have been in a couple of briefings — as I’m sure most bloggers and analysts have experienced — where the vendor didn’t know anything about me. They weren’t familiar with the company I work for or why they were talking with me … their plan, in those instances, was apparently to blanket the earth with their message. How can you know what outcome you’re aiming for with a briefing if you don’t know anything about who you’re meeting with? Research those on your schedule of briefings so you know what credentials they had to get in that room — do they maintain a blog? Are they an analyst? Journalist? Influencer? Why would they care about your news?

  4. Know your goals: What do you want to accomplish by meeting with your roster? Are you trying to get them to write about you? Are you on a mission to educate the marketplace on a new offering? Did your organization have a change in leadership or make a major acquisition recently that you want everyone to know about? Establish how you’ll measure the success of your industry briefings before you start scheduling them.

  5. Follow up in a meaningful way: Look, we know this space. We’ve been in it for more than a decade. If you’re scheduling briefings with our team here at The Starr Conspiracy, we’re not going to steer you wrong. We’ll help you through the process with patience and we’ll even give you feedback if you ask for it, but most analysts and influencers out there expect you to be ready for prime time by the time you meet with them. They expect you to be on top of your game. Be sure you send a thoughtful, personal follow up thanking them for their time, providing them with any additional resources they might need, and offering to be available for any communications going forward. Be sure you follow through on your promises if you offered to send something their way, because a good briefing might not do much for your organization, but a bad one can leave a resounding negative impact.