Boy it seems that the amount of expert vendors running around on the web posting their credibility and service capabilities constantly is kind of surreal at this point with all of the aggregate groups, social networks, etc . This to me is throwing off some people on how to find valuable best of breed vendors.
I recently read a post from six months ago on a linked in group where a decision maker posted a request for referrals to vendors who could help his company with B2B demand generation and marketing. First off the number of responses was incredible (over 70 so far) and the diversity (including international posts) and skill sets and companies that responded frankly shocked me. I’m sure there was some value in what was posted but who has the time, tolerance, stamina and drive to read that many recommendations. I’d question if my employees were doing that during the work day when searching for new vendor solutions for Extended Presence.
I’m a fan of Jim Cramer’s best of breed within a sector focus when it comes to investing. I think it may be valuable to apply this to your vendor research.
Here are a few ideas for you:
Pick the companies that appear to be best of breed based upon your key needs.
- So perhaps do your research first: Gather referrals from a few people vs. the world and maybe have some identified criteria as part of your process.
- I had an old mentor who was a successful CEO mention that when people go job searching they are way too broad. His advice was to focus on the industry you want to work in and specific ally focus on companies within that industry that you have thoroughly researched and like and go after them aggressively. Maybe this is a way to start your search.
- Define from your experience and goals what constitutes best of breed?
o Look for case studies, real results and length of experience of the management team and how long the company has been around as a first step
o Know what kind of tactics you want to focus on then go from there (I’m sure vendors have more offers than you are initially interested in but again determine where to start)