Buyers are exposed to multiple forms of content during their day. However, not all of that is relevant to their technology selection processes. To find out more, we asked a transatlantic sample of 360 senior cybersecurity buyers where they turned to support their purchasing of security technologies. The study asked buyers about the content they used through a range of purchasing activities.
Some key findings about the impact of industry analysts are shown in the table below.
Overall use: Most influential
Technology strategy: top four
Consideration: used by most
Decision: used by most
Buyers rank analysts as the most influential content
Analysts are one of four channels used by 68% to 67% of professionals when deciding which technologies to adopt
Industry analyst reports was the only content type mentioned by most buyers (58%)
Industry analyst reports are the only content used by a majority (62%) at final section
Industry analysts’ reports are most influential content in the two key purchasing activities: becoming aware of vendors to consider; and the final selection itself.
- Buyers were asked what type of content drives their awareness of security technology suppliers. Industry analyst reports was the only content type mentioned by most buyers (58%), with webinars coming second on 42%.
- Buyers told us what resources they use to finally select a vendor. Industry analyst reports are the only content used by a majority (62%) at final section. Video case studies came second, on 48%.
These two findings show the unique primacy of analyst reports in those two use cases: they are the only content type named by a majority of the study participants in those two use cases.
Of course, analysts are part of a broad information landscape. Buyers are exposed to other forms of content. While analyst content is primary in the consideration and decision stages, it’s part of a mix of resources used in the technology strategy discovery phase of the purchase. Even there, analysts stand out.
- TECHNOLOGY STRATEGY: Before considering a specific supplier, buyers want to understand whether or not a particular type of technology is needed. Four channels were named by more than two-thirds of buyers as an influence on which technologies they adopted: industry events (68%); business technology media (68%); industry analysts (67%); and the industry/trade media (67%).
- Buyers were asked to rank the different content sources they use by influence. Industry analyst reports came top, with 64% ranking it first or second. The next most influential content type was ranked first or second by 53%.
- THE UNITED STATES: Analysts were even more influential in the United States than in the United Kingdom. When US cybersecurity buyers were asked about influence on awareness of suppliers, industry analysts came in top place, at 78%.
The findings about industry analysts are discussed in a September 2023 report by CCGroup, which sponsored the study. The data was collected by Coleman Parkes in the second quarter of 2023, following a methodology also followed by a similar report in 2021. A parallel report, also published by CCGroup, looks at the wider range of information sources, especially investigating the role of the business and trade media.