SMB Group – Filling the Gap for Small to Medium Businesses

Posted by on Jul 5, 2012 in Who I Work With | Comments Off

SMB Group – Filling the Gap for Small to Medium Businesses

Why the SMB Group?

SMB Group is a market research and consulting firm that provides insight and guidance about how and why SMB and mid-market customers discover, evaluate, compare and buy technology-related solutions. We put our 15-plus years of SMB market experience to work for our clients, providing them with the actionable insight and intelligence they need more successfully target, reach and serve SMB customers.

Our areas of focus include: Emerging Technologies, Business and Marketing Applications, Collaboration and Productivity Applications, IT Infrastructure Management and Services and Green IT.

We formed the SMB Group to fill a gap. The SMB market is huge and diverse—with about 27 million businesses in the U.S. alone. And, SMBs play a pivotal part in driving economic growth, accounting for about 65% of gross domestic production worldwide. Like larger entities, SMBs need technology-based solutions to help improve business productivity, increase revenues and profitability, and drive innovation. But, while SMBs arguably provide the most fertile grounds for growth, few market research and analyst firms specialize in helping technology vendors understand and succeed in this highly complex space.


SMB Group Focus Areas

The SMB Group focuses exclusively on researching and analyzing the highly fragmented “SMB market”—which is comprised of many smaller, more discrete markets. We take a custom approach to working with clients, assessing where you are in the market today, and the steps you need to take to get where you want to be tomorrow.

Our collaborative and pragmatic, actionable research approach provides you with insights and recommendations you need to capitalize on shifting market requirements and trends, and create successful go-to-market outcomes. We also work closely with your marketing team to help integrate key findings and deliverables into your marketing and media outreach campaigns to boost market awareness and consideration of your offerings.

We use a combination of traditional market and competitive research methodologies and social media analysis to help you accomplish your goals. Working one-on-one with you, we select the best approach to help you to:

  • Identify the best-fit market segments for your solutions.
  • Map marketing and channels initiatives to how customers’ discover, evaluate, compare and buy different types of solutions.
  • Align messaging and positioning with customer pain points, requirements and constraints.
  • Gain a thought leadership advantage and competitive edge with deliverables that demonstrate your understanding of the market and the results that customers get using your solutions.
  • Assess competitive threats and partnering/acquisition opportunities.

We also publish blogs on a regular basis to highlight key and emerging trends we see in the SMB community and among the vendors that serve SMB customers.

Our primary focus areas include:

  • Business solutions (financials, sales, marketing, analytics, etc.)
  • Digital marketing solutions (SEO, SEM, etc.)
  • Collaboration and productivity applications
  • Cloud computing, software-as-a service (SaaS) and managed services
  • IT Infrastructure solutions and management services
  • Social networking strategies and analysis
  • Unified communications, VoIP and conferencing solutions

Our clients are primarily derived from vendors, distribution channels and media agencies. We work with large enterprises, niche and startup companies and the venture capital community.


Sanjeev Aggarwal, Founder and Partner

Sanjeev brings more than 20 years of experience in the technology industry to his role as Partner at SMB Group. He has a breadth of experience spans software, hardware and services solutions for the SMB, mid-markets and fortune 500 companies. At the SMB Group, Sanjeev provides advisory and consulting services focused on cloud computing, managed services, virtualization, storage systems, business and collaboration applications. He covers both the supply and demand side; analyzing data from vendors, end-users and channel perspectives.

Prior to his role at the SMB Group, Aggarwal has held senior positions at analyst and research firms Hurwitz & Associates, as Partner, and AMI-Partners, as Vice President of IT Infrastructure and Unified Communications/collaboration research. Before this, Sanjeev led the SMB research in business applications and IT Infrastructure solutions at Yankee Group. Prior to this Sanjeev held senior marketing and business development positions at Intergraph Corporation, Eurologic Systems, Compaq Computer Corporation and Digital Equipment Corporation where he lead development of business and marketing strategies, competitive analysis and go-to-market initiatives.

Sanjeev is frequently quoted in leading business and trade publications and has been a featured speaker at many industry and vendor events. He holds a M.S. degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering from State University of New York in Buffalo, NY and an M.B.A. in Marketing and Business Strategies from the State University of New York at Buffalo.


Laurie McCabe – Partner

Laurie brings more than 20 years of experience in the IT industry to her current role as Partner at the SMB Group. Laurie has built widespread recognition for her capabilities and insights in the small and medium business (SMB) market in several areas, including cloud computing, software-as-service (SaaS), collaboration, business solutions, social networking and managed services. Laurie’s expertise in market, channel and competitive analysis helps vendor clients capitalize on shifting market trends, and create successful go-to-market and outcomes.

From 2009 to 2010, Laurie was a Partner at Hurwitz & Associates, where she co-authored Collaboration for Dummies (Wiley Publishing) and led SMB-related projects. Prior to that, Laurie served as Vice President of SMB Insights & Solutions at AMI-Partners for five years. In this role, she directed syndicated research in the business solutions area, and led numerous projects to help clients enter new markets, launch solutions, and elevate brand awareness and consideration in the SMB market. Previously, Laurie was Vice President at Summit Strategies for seven years, where her original research and analysis of the emerging SaaS market earned her broad recognition as a thought leader in this area. Laurie’s nine years at Digital Equipment Corporation, including her last role as Director of Market and Competitive Intelligence, provide her with critical experience from the vendor perspective.

Ms. McCabe is frequently quoted in leading business and trade publications, has been a featured speaker at many industry and vendor events, is a frequent blogger, a regular contributor to Small Business Computing, and a 2011 Small Business Influencer Champion in the Gurus category. She holds a bachelor’s degree in communications and psychology from the University of Delaware, and has completed numerous graduate-level courses in business administration.

Dwight Davis, Contributing Analyst

Dwight has been reporting on and analyzing computer industry trends, technologies and strategies for more than 30 years. He worked as a senior editor at several leading computer and business publications from the late 1970s through the mid-1990s. Dwight then took the helm of Windows Watcher, an award-winning corporate newsletter focused on Microsoft and its ecosystem of partners and competitors. Next, Dwight spent 10 years working as a leading industry analyst, first at Summit Strategies and then at Ovum. At these market-research firms, he ran a variety of infrastructure software strategic services. Those services tracked and analyzed leading vendors (Microsoft, IBM, Oracle, SAP, HP, Sun, etc.) and innovative start-up firms, as well as cutting-edge technologies and business models, including cloud computing, service-oriented architecture and Web services. Since 2009, Dwight has worked as an independent analyst and writer.

Arjun Aggarwal, Junior Analyst

Arjun currently a Sophomore at Stanford University brings a strong set of analytical and literary skills as well a deep understanding of some of the emerging technologies like mobile and social. He represents today’s gen Y or millennials and helps bring some of these latest trends into the SMB Group projects and analysis.