Gartner Blog Network

Hank Barnes
VP Distinguished Analyst
5+ years at Gartner
30 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

Things I’d Like to See Go Away – The “We Don’t Trust You” Customer Return Approach

by Hank Barnes  |  May 8, 2018

Another in my ongoing list of things I’d like to see go away.  This one is not about marketing or sales, it’s about customer service and customer experience. Let me start with a personal story.   I’ve started drinking tea instead of soda.  It’s time to do a little more to get healthy and behave like […]

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The Conceptual How

by Hank Barnes  |  May 1, 2018

Our research clearly shows that technology buyers care deeply about not just what is possible in terms of business outcomes; they care about how things work.  This could be from too many experiences of being burned by broken promises of capabilities and results that don’t quite work the way they were advertised.   Or it could […]

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Things I’d Like to See Go Away – The Differentiators List

by Hank Barnes  |  April 24, 2018

I started this series of  things that need to go away with the logo slide (albeit with that one still having utility in certain cases.  Next on the target is the “differentiators list.”   This one needs to go away forever.   It takes many forms: A slide in a presentation A collection of content on a Web […]

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Critical Selling Skill – Learning (and Sharing) How Customers Buy

by Hank Barnes  |  April 17, 2018

In today’s B2B technology selling environment, there is a critical selling skill that can make the difference between success and failure.  While it’s easy to focus on why customers buy, in the face of increased competition it may be more important to understand how customers buy. Competition, as I’ve discussed in the past, comes in […]

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Things I’d Like to See Go Away – The Logo Slide

by Hank Barnes  |  April 10, 2018

I’m going to start a new set of blog posts focused on things that I would like to see disappear–or at least disappear in certain contexts.   I’m not sure how long this series will go, but I’ve got a few ideas and welcome suggestions from readers. First on the list – The Logo Slide (as […]

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The Disappearing Opportunity

by Hank Barnes  |  April 3, 2018

Recently, I shared some of the early findings from Gartner’s most recent survey on technology buying habits, discussing how (for our respondents) 43% of the software buying efforts they explored were ad hoc–not part of any established plans.   In recently published research (Gartner clients can access here), we explore the topic in much greater detail.  […]

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The Risk of the “Risk Bias”

by Hank Barnes  |  March 27, 2018

“No one ever got fired for buying IBM” is a phrase we’ve all heard.  Today, that might change to a variety of other leading vendors.   It’s often the legitimate reason that newer vendors bring up when talking about their growth challenges.  Effectively many organizations have a risk bias when it comes to projects—-they prefer the […]

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Mindset Driven Dissonance

by Hank Barnes  |  March 20, 2018

While digital business is changing markets, many organizations still struggle with change.  They know they have to, but the can’t seem to do it.  We all know that change is hard, but why can’t it happen when everyone knows it needs to happen.   Here are a few observations: A desire for innovative new technologies, but […]

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What I Look For When Reviewing Web Sites

by Hank Barnes  |  March 13, 2018

A frequent inquiry request for Gartner clients is a Web site review.  This is a great idea since technology buyers tell us that they view vendor Web sites as vendor marketing activity that is most likely to get their attention.  Everyone expects you to have a Web site and that is where they go to learn […]

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Sharing the Value of Repetition

by Hank Barnes  |  March 6, 2018

I spend a lot of time helping clients tell their stories more effectively.   It’s pretty common for me to hear, “You are pretty good at this” (but I know I’m not perfect and can always get better).  Then they ask how.  My answer is “repetition.”  When you practice a skill over and over again, you […]

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