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Where do small and medium sized businesses go to research a technology purchase?

There are a multitude of resources available to any company researching a technology purchase,  a technology vendor's website, a company's call center or help desk, a social networking community on the subject, a technology blog, the internet at-large, industry publications (magazines and journals), a local technology consultant, industry analysts who publish analysis and reports on the topic, a local technology reseller or distribution firm, a local or regional sales representative in their area, a trusted friend or family member with some technology background or knowledge.

Recent focus group research points to the trusted friend or family member, i.e. "the brother-in-law" as one of the primary sources of information that small and medium businesses use when considering a technology purchase.  I would be interested in the feedback from the small and medium business folks within the community regarding their preferred method of finding reliable information to help them make a technology purchase.

Thoughts and feedback welcome.

Regards,

Stan Mizerny

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