Forrester Follows Gartner's Lead

from the failing-.coms dept

So, yesterday Gartner said most dot coms were going to fail. It didn’t take long for Forrester to follow up and say the same thing. What interests me is why neither of these companies said anything about this when they were hyping all these companies a few months back.

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Anders Mcleod says:

Forrester flip-flopping? Imagine!

There was a column about Forrester and Gartner a while back which I wish I could remember. Salon maybe? It outlined thier business strategy, which is to get quoted in as many publications as possible and to sell predictions to CEO’s to include in business plans and SEC filings. They “don’t keep track” of success/failure rates on their past predictions, and nobody else does either. Which is why it doesn’t surprise me that the two companies always seem to say about the same thing, even in this case.

If Gartner were to say 98% of dot-coms will fail in two years, and Forrester said only 40% will fail, people might start paying attention to who ends up being right. That would undermine thier whole business, because then the next time someone was writing an article about the future of B2B and Gartner says “B2B ecommerce will account for 78% of all monetary exchange by 2010”, the reporter might actually ask them to back it up somehow. And they can’t. But as long as they both flip-flop at the same time, Joe Public will assume they’re both just re-evaluating thier predictions based on new data, and next week no one will remember or think twice when they read another article with a bunch of numbers based on blue-sky “research”.

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