Gartner Blog Network

Hank Barnes
Research Vice President
4+ years at Gartner
29 years IT Industry

Hank Barnes provides research and advisory services on go-to-market strategies for technology providers. He focuses on issues related to positioning, storytelling, the technology customer life cycle, and customer experience. Read Full Bio

Establishing Your Own Identity in Ecosystems

by Hank Barnes  |  January 10, 2017

The ecosystem model in technology has been in place for a long time.   A key aspect of Microsoft’s early growth was their ability to get developers to create software that ran on their operating system.  SAP and Oracle built partner networks to provide implementation services around their products. is a key element […]

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Recognizing B2B Buying Triggers

by Hank Barnes  |  January 3, 2017

As plans continue to be refined for 2017, there is one area that I feel needs to rise to the top of sales and marketing priority lists–the identification and deep understanding of buying triggers for your products or solutions. We spent much of the last few years talking about situational awareness being critical to sales […]

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The End is The Beginning

by Hank Barnes  |  December 27, 2016

Rather than provide predictions or resolutions in my final post of the year, I figured I’d go a different route.  A reminder of sorts. One of my earliest posts at Gartner was called “Solving the Maze of Marketing and Selling.”  In that post, I talked about how one way to solve maze puzzles easier is […]

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Appealing to Everyone Appeals to No One

by Hank Barnes  |  December 20, 2016

This is not going to be a late post on the election (if you know me well, you know I don’t talk politics).   But there continues to be a pattern that I see tech providers repeat over and over and over. They define their targets effectively as everyone.  Or everyone who might consider a […]

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Trust Breakdowns: Provider Claims Solutions Drive Strategy

by Hank Barnes  |  December 13, 2016

This week, a colleague shared with me some marketing material he came across from a leading technology provider.   The “hook” was  a pretty good one: “Don’t have a data strategy?  We can help.” But the landing page, caused some analyst heartburn.  The big claim there: “Data strategy starts with a solution, and every strategy […]

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Gartner Tech Growth and Innovation Conference, Round 2

by Hank Barnes  |  December 6, 2016

Last year, I had the honor to chair the first ever, Gartner Tech  Growth and Innovation Conference.   Well, we are back for another year and early bird registration is now open.   This year’s conference will be held in at the Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach (CA) from June 19-21.  Its a beautiful venue and […]

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Buyer/Vendor Disconnects – Reasons for Immediate Rejection

by Hank Barnes  |  November 29, 2016

Many of my most recent posts have reflected some of the findings from our regular survey into the buying process, and key influences, for enterprise technology.   This year, we also surveyed tech providers to see what they thought worked and mattered most to the enterprises they target.  We’ll be sharing more and more details […]

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The Enterprise Persona Matters Most in B2B Tech Markets

by Hank Barnes  |  November 22, 2016

I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with personas.   While I truly believe in adapting your communication to specific audiences, and the the exercise of developing personas forces you to deepen your understanding of the people you market and sell to, I also feel that there are some risks.   In B2B markets, […]

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Differentiation and Neutralization – The Constant Struggle

by Hank Barnes  |  November 15, 2016

Last week, Geoffrey Moore published a post on LinkedIn called Innovation Silicon Valley Style is the Exception, Not the Rule.  As always with Geoff, it is excellent and well worth the read.  One of the things he highlights is the difference between disruptive innovation and sustaining innovation, playing up that the path has an impact on […]

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The Impact of Customer Communities Can Not Be Ignored

by Hank Barnes  |  November 8, 2016

Followers of this blog know that I spend a lot of time thinking, researching, and writing about customer advocacy (and customer centric approaches in general) and communities.   Your customers and prospects want to talk to each other–often without you filtering or controlling the conversation.   But it is your responsibility, actually your opportunity, to […]

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