Bring the Party to Users as Part of Your New BI Product Launch

  • by Mico Yuk, Co-Founder of EverythingXcelsius.com and BI Influencer
  • February 25, 2013
BI consultant Mico Yuk shares some creative ways to successfully take a new BI report or tool from development to your end users.

Have you ever seen a new Apple product launch? It’s fun and people in attendance are excited to be a part of it because they know Apple developers create a great product. That’s why Apple customers wait in line for hours to get a new iPhone.

However, in our world, too many times IT pushes out a new report, notifies the business users, and then waits for feedback. Even if your developers have produced an innovative report, this type of launch is boring and doesn’t engage the users, which can, in turn, discourage them.

Your development team can take Apple’s approach, too, with your own new BI application launches. Your business users are your assets, and IT has to treat them accordingly. You have to create a connection to your internal customers.

To me, a BI app launch cannot just be IT pushing out the product to the business. Instead, it has to be an event that is close to a mini-conference. There is a social aspect to launching a new app that, if done correctly, can increase user adoption of your project.

There is a whole strategy to achieving this — including creating an exciting brand name for your app and marketing the project — but for this quick tip, I want to focus on the actual event of launching your app.

Below are some elements that I use to create successful launch events, and if it sounds like a party, it is:

  • Invitations. Don’t rely just on word of mouth. Use Evite or other online invitation services to get the launch event on people’s calendars. Once you confirm the launch date of your app, allow from 30 to 45 days before the launch party, and then plan for a two-to-four-hour event.
  • Good location. You need a social venue with tables, chairs, and space to give a presentation. During this presentation, the project owners can walk attendees through the journey that brought the project to fruition. Allow attendees to mingle easily with the project team.
  • Food. People love to eat. Think about what time of day you have the party and what you can afford. If it’s lunch time, try for a catered meal, or go more formal if the launch occurs near dinner. If you can’t scrape up the funds to pay for food, then IT members could bring their own food to the event with a potluck. I’ve seen potlucks work well in these situations and they don’t cost a lot.
  • Props. This step is important because props put an exclamation point on your work. I like to print out poster-sized versions of screenshots that show the new app in action. Materials with quotes from project owners or developers are also effective. If you have the ability, allow attendees to play around with the new app at computer stations or on their mobile devices during the party.

I know this approach is different than the way many people in IT think as they prepare to push out a new app to users. But if you bring some excitement to your launch like Apple does, your business users will notice and, in my experience, are more likely to actually use your product.

Note
You can watch a free replay of Mico Yuk’s recent webinar, “Learn One Shocking New Way to Increase BI User Adoption,” which is part of her BI Dashboard Formula training series.

Mico Yuk

Mico Yuk is the founder of the coaching series, BI Dashboard Formula (BIDF). Since its release in June 2012, BIDF has attracted hundreds of online students from some of the largest companies in the world, including Procter & Gamble, Honda, Kimberly-Clark, Shell, Nestle, and FedEx. She is the author of Data Visualization for Dummies (Wiley 2014), and a highly regarded BI influencer, TDWI trainer, and sought after speaker in the BI ecosystem. Mico’s accomplishments include being named as one of the first female BI SAP Mentors. She is also the founder of the weblog Everything Xcelsius and the Xcelsius Gurus Network. Mico was recently named by SAP as one of the Top 50 Analytics Bloggers to follow. To find out more about Mico, please visit http://micoyuk.com or follow her on Twitter at @micoyuk.

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You may contact the author at mico@everythingxcelsius.com.

 

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