SMB Research’s Top 20 Favorite Reads of 2010

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What was the best SMB or technology-related piece you read this past year?

When we at SMB Research started talking a few weeks ago about what we thought were some of the most interesting and valuable articles from 2010, we realized that once again this year there has been a great deal of very good (however you define this) research and writing.  If you struggle to find the time to read to read everything that deserves your attention, we share your pain.

To help you out, SMB Research decided to take a look back at some of what has been written and published this past year, and to identify some of our favorite reads.

SMB Research’s Top 20 Favorite Reads, 2010:
(in chronological order)

Title Author Date Category
ERP Part Two – The Economics of Selling ERP Ann Grackin, ChainLink Research December 14, 2010 ERP
Framework: The Social Media ROI Pyramid Jeremiah Owyang, Altimeter Group December 13, 2010 CRM and Social Media
What’s you Plan for 2025? / A perspective on tomorrow’s high-performance manufacturing firms John Ferreira, Accenture, and Stephen Laaper, Accenture November 23, 2010 Manufacturing
Targeting the ‘M’ in SMB Hailey Lynn McKeefry, on ChannelPro-SMB November 5, 2010 Strategy & Planning
Forrester Research: Making IT work in small and mid sized firms Tim Harmon, Forrester Research on November 1, 2010 IT Trends
5 Reasons Why Small Businesses Should Care about Sustainability Kathy Miller Perkins, Miller Consultants, Inc, on October 13, 2010 Supply Chain
Global Survey of Supply Chain Progress (8th Annual) Computer Sciences Corporation October 7, 2010 Supply Chain
Gartner’s “IT Debt” Scare Vinnie Mirchandani, at deal architect September 26, 2010 IT Trends
10 Metrics for a New CIO Chris Curran, Principle, Diamond Advisory Services, at CIO Dashboard September 17, 2010 IT Trends
Alarming IT data points Vinnie Mirchandani, at deal architect August 26, 2010 IT Trends
The 2010 Social Business Landscape Dion Hinchcliffe, Dachis Group August 12, 2010 IT Trends
Reaching SMBs Through SMB Communities Tim Harmon, Forrester Research, on Tim Harmon’s
July 30, 2010 CRM and Social Media
Research Report: Microsoft Partners – Before Adopting Azure, Understand the 12 Benefits And Risks R “Ray” Wang, Constellation Research, Inc., at A Software Insider’s Point of View July 11, 2010 Cloud
How Sales Complexity impacts your Startup’s Viability David Skok, Matrix Partners, on For Entrepreneurs April 1, 2010 Strategy & Planning
Tuesday’s Tip: Understanding The Many Flavors of Cloud Computing and SaaS R “Ray” Wang, Constellation Research, Inc., at A Software Insider’s Point of View March 22, 2010 Cloud
Altimeter Report: The 18 Use Cases of Social CRM, The New Rules of Relationship Management Charlene Li, Altimeter Group March 5, 2010 CRM and Social Media
Ten emerging Enterprise 2.0 technologies to watch Dion Hinchcliffe, Dachis Group, on ZDNet February 22, 2010 Enterprise 2.0
SaaS Metrics – A Guide to Measuring and Improving What Matters David Skok, Matrix Partners, on For Entrepreneurs February 17, 2010 Cloud
Top 10 Emerging SMB Technologies Mike Vizard, at CTOEdge February 3, 2010 IT Trends
Ten Things a Modern Website Should Do Sam Wettling, Launch Interactive Media January 14, 2010 CRM and Social Media

To compile this list, each of us (Miles and Bob) compiled a long list of SMB- and technology-related pieces that we found to be both well-written and to generally meet the following standards:

Crisp and clear – providing insight with clarity, precision, and occasionally passion.
High signal-to-noise ratio – that is, showing exceptional respect for the reader’s time investment.
Digestible – not too short or too long.
Vendor-agnostic – Focusing more on ideas rather than on any specific vendor (for the most part.)
Credible, & Authoritative – Written by, and with, a reputable and credible voice.
Accessible by you – not requiring a paid fee to access.

We looked through the hundreds of sources and voices that we follow, and looked most closely at perhaps a couple of hundred of the innumerable SMB- and/or technology-related articles, blog posts, and other pieces of writing from 2010.

After identifying some 100 of a long list of articles, blog posts, and other writings, we used a simple scoring method to independently identify the 20 or so pieces that we respectively felt were our ‘favorite of favorites’ for their substance, quality, and crispness. The list above is a reconciliation of our respective favorite reads.

So before your inbox gets out of control this year, take a look at these articles and the people who are writing them. We think you might be the better for it.

“Boy, Did You Guys Miss the Boat!”

Sure, you, say, you can think of many pieces of exceptional writing from 2010 that you don’t see on our list – something that you carried around for a couple of days and read twice, or something that made you stop and think, or maybe even prompted you take some action.  You can’t imagine how we could have gotten the list so wrong, can you?

So tell us what we missed.  Bring it on. Leave us a comment, or send us an email, and alert us to the most exceptional articles, blogs, posts you read in 2010.  What was the best technology-related article, feature or blog post you read this year? (Please include source, and link.) We’d enjoy the discussion.

What about SMB Research? What did SMB research and write about this year?

Here are SMB Research’s Top 5 postings for 2010:

1. Sizing up Small-to-Medium Business (SMB)

2. 2010 IT Planning for Small-to-Medium Business

3. EMC for Small-to-Medium Business

4. Virtual Server Backup – A Conversation with Lois Paul’s Don Jennings

5. Virtual Server Backup Software Buyer’s Guide (Sneak Preview)

If you ask us, there are a few others that we would also recommend to you that, for whatever reason, did not end up in SMB Research’s “Top 5″:

Vendors: Are You Trying to Hide from Prospects and Industry Influencers?

SMBs: Get Influence Working With Large Vendors; 7 Guidelines to Ease the Process

To discuss, disagree, compliment, admonish us – or inquire about putting SMB Research to work for you – leave a comment below, give us a call (781 904-0408), or admonish and tutor us by email:
Miles ( or Bob (

In the meantime, we wish all our readers, clients, friends, and peers Best Wishes for a successful and prosperous 2011.


  1. Nice website, I think I recognize this design from somewhere, is it a template? It suits your website anyway.

  2. Thank you for a great post.


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