Which cloud services provider (CSP) is most popular among enterprises? A new 451 Research survey of nearly 2,000 enterprise cloud users showed that Talkin' Cloud 100 honoree IBM (IBM) was the top choice.

451 Research's "Hosting and Cloud Survey 2015" listed IBM as the company most likely to win cloud business, followed by Microsoft (MSFT) and Amazon Web Services (AWS). In addition, Big Blue was chosen as the top vendor for significant cloud hosting projects.

So what factors have helped IBM succeed in the cloud services market? An IBM spokesperson told Talkin' Cloud that Big Blue has targeted "higher-value, higher-profit cloud opportunities," which has allowed the company to extend its market reach.

"If you look at the kinds of cloud deals IBM is signing, you'll see how the cloud market is starting to split between low-end commoditized cloud offerings and players, and higher-value, higher-profit cloud opportunities," the spokesperson said. "This is not dissimilar to most IT markets as they mature. And, as with every other element of its business, IBM is targeting the latter."

For example, IBM announced a deal in February to offer faster digital services to Marriott International (MAR) guests. Marriott said it plans to migrate many of its core IT systems and applications to the IBM Cloud platform over the next few years.

IBM continues to explore ways to expand as well. The company last month said it would invest $3 billion over the next four years to develop an Internet of Things (IoT) business and plans to create a cloud-based platform to help customers and partners build IoT solutions.

Big Blue's cloud revenue rose more than 75 percent to $7.7 billion in the first quarter of this year. Ginni Rometty, IBM's CEO, also pointed out that her company is focused on delivering "higher value through portfolio transformation and investment" going forward.

What are your thoughts on IBM? Share your thoughts about this story in the Comments section below, via Twitter @dkobialka or email me at dan.kobialka@penton.com.