Finding the Right Fit

By Beth Schillaci 10 years ago
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Does this scenario sound familiar? The cool new tool was just written up over at Mashable, you take a few minutes and open a new account over at the site. You’ve set up a personal account and start exploring to see what this thing has to offer. If that sounds like you, here are a few tips on what I  look for during my evaluation that will hopefully help you too.

Is your target audience going to use this tool now or in the next 12 months? If your target audience doesn’t adopt the tool, it doesn’t make sense to spend a lot of time building a strategy for it. Early adopters usually flock to the newest shiny object, but you can tell if your audience will migrate over to it in the future. If you feel they will, set up shop now and let your audience know you are there.

Does this new tool fill a void that others don’t? If you are like me, as you use a tool or site, you find yourself saying  “if only this site did ____, it would be so much better.” If the new tool fills that blank space, then it is worth exploring your options a little more. No tool is going to be 100% perfect, but if the new tools provides you with better communications with your audience, I say go for it. Conversely, does it share some of the features you love about other tools? If it does, chances are these are features that your audience loves too and they will make the transition over time.

This is not to say, you abandon your current accounts, but begin to plan how your goals and strategies can translate on this new platform. What other tips do you have for evaluating new tools?

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 Beth Schillaci

  (69 articles)

In my almost 20 years in business, I feel like I can sum things up as Been There, Done That. I have won awards, presented in front of more people than I can count and even wrote a book, but one thing has not changed – I love working with businesses to help them tell their story to the world.


  • Kevin Bruce says:

    I usually try it out. If I find I start using it more and more, that’s when I think about replacing another tool with it.

  • I think the point about the target audience is key. However, there are also a lot of tools out there for collecting and analyzing data, and it may or may not matter if your target audience is part of those as long as they give you the data that you need. Those are the ones I always find tempting, even when the data is not completely relevant. I need to remember to evaluate these kinds of things as well.

    I think there the questions are, “What will this tell me? What does it measure? Do I need to measure this or not? How will this measurement help me evaluate my progress towards my goals?” Otherwise, I tend to get waaay too caught up in the numbers. (e.g. Klout)

    • Beth says:

      Great point. As long as it can get you closer towards your goals, it is worth a look. Thanks for the comment.