About my use of social media in my research
I use my blog, (and other social media tools like Twitter) as a percentage of my research methodology (around 15%), it’s not the only contributing factor but is an effective way of me using a real-time, global, inexpensive user group. While I do benefit from the flexibility and speed of this format, it also has it’s risks such as lack of identification, biased sample, or often lack of controls. Forrester encourages me to use these tools, it’s helping, and I’m living the space that I cover “Social Computing”.
Social media is only one small sliver of the methodology used to generate the reports.
I’m working on two research reports, the first one is a catalog of the White Label Social Networking vendors (it will list out all the players) then I’ll be segmenting, rating and ranking the leaders in the space by creating a Forrester Wave report. The Wave is a very heavy duty report, and will take me at least 10 weeks to complete, it’s very thorough and will influence buying and funding behavior of the market.
Whenever I ask you for help or conduct research in public, I’ll return the favor and give my findings back to the community, it’s only fair, and encourages you to participate, it’s dang fun too.
1) I asked you what you want
Earlier, I asked me readers (who I know many are in the market for social networks) what do they want in a white label social network vendor.
2) The weighted results are now available.
Thanks to Scott Wright (He’s on Facebook), our Research Associate on our team, he did a quick weighted average based upon responses, they are the following:
What you said you wanted in a White Label Social Networking Vendor:
The number represents a weighted score, as respondents were asked to prioiritize only three requests, the first response was weighted at “3” the second weighted a “2” and the third response weighted a “1”.
Ease of use/customer experience = 22
Customizability = 21
Pricing = 21
Reliability = 12
Integration = 7
Features = 6
Flexibility = 4
Ease of implementation = 4
Company Strategy = 3
Privacy = 3
Reporting = 2
Revenue Drivers = 2
Support = 2
Dependability = 1
Entertainment = 1
Quite a few responses around functionality to have a great user experience, be easy to use. As the term “white label” applies (an application you can rebrand and reshape) there’s no surprised that respondents wanted a software package that could easily morph into the look and feel of your corporate site or microsite, we could have easily coupled the 4 results for flexibility in the bucket, if we had a forced drop down survey, (this was open ended, by design) Lastly, pricing was important, as you know the vendors go from free to 20,000 a month, installation services range from 5,000-200,000 fixed costs with varying degrees of service, support, and software features. Many strategists made it very clear that they work at Fortune 5000 companies that reliability was so important, as many brands sell performance based products, their community site could not be down, it’s just embarrassing.
Thanks for responding, although this is only one factor in determining requirements, it’s certainly a good kickstart, and great confirmation.