Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Viral Upgrading

Hi All. Long time, no see. I haven't been writing a lot of code lately since I'm still ramping up my knowledge at IBM, but I *am* working on some stuff for Lotusphere. I'll be doing three sessions this year; two with Nathan and one with Bruce. How I end up lucky enough to speak with these guys, I do not know. Anyway, more on that to come. For now, I want to talk about "Viral Upgrading".

The Notes 8 client represents a significant shift in the way IBM views the user experience. Over the years, I've made my name as a consultant and in-house developer by working to develop good looking, easy to use applications on top of a client that was never very attractive or user-friendly. That has changed greatly, my friends, and it's time to capitalize on this fact. One thing I've observed over time is that in many IT environments, if the users start clamoring about something enough, they usually get their way. I suggest using this to your advantage within your company if you're traditionally kind of slow on doing upgrades. Start rallying the ground troops by exposing them to the new features of Notes 8 as much as possible. One great way to start is to point them at this new video on YouTube.

Other things you might try: Leave fliers showing the new interface and features lying around in conference rooms, organize "lunch and learn" sessions to show off the new look, share blogs like Alan's Lotus Notes Hints, Tips & Tricks.

The more you can get users excited about the new functionality available in Notes 8, the more they will want to upgrade. I've been talking to customers and a lot are really looking forward to getting the new version of Lotus Notes! That's pretty exciting in my book, and I hope you find it so as well. So kick off your viral upgrade campaign...and best of luck to you!


Nate said...

"Leave fliers showing the new interface and features lying around in conference rooms"

LOL. Like a Chinese restaurant in New York.

By the way, viral UPGRADING would be when you just upgrade your users' machines without asking their permission or telling them. Which, frankly, sounds like a damn good idea to me. :-)

benoit said...


well, viral upgrading for notes 8, ok.
But do they tell you we also need to upgrade all computer before ?

let's say:
a fresh new great wonderful notes 8 client: 150 €
a fresh new great computer capable of running all this stuf:
1500 €....

great evolution, that's it.
( but i got it on my computer ;-) )

Steve Tsuida said...

This ad is awful marketing. Here's why: It's IBM pretending to be people talking about IBM. This is the marketing equivalent of Senator Clinton's recently planted questions. It's somewhere between softball and spray cheese, and Notes 8 deserves better.

All they need to do to save this is: 1) Scrap this draft of ad and get it off of YouTube immediately. 2) Get out on the street in a Large Eastern City and a Large Western City and candidly film people on the street dropping by a kiosk near a lunch-break venue (maybe Panera or Starbucks) capturing their genuine responses on camera. I've seen Notes 8 and I'm pretty sure it'd be easy to capture at least a hundred clips of people's "Wow!" responses and then edit it down to a thirty second raw, incontrovertible FTW sledgehammer of truth in advertising. The exact same message, with the exact same dialogue, but grounded in imagery and sound that the audience can't immediately filter out.