The comment above came from Hilton Travis, and was used in the context where he was referring to the SBS/EBS Virtual Launch event that Microsoft conducted on November 12th, 2008. This blog post is not to pick on Hilton, but to use his comments as an example. It s a comment I ve heard more than a few times now about the information being released around SBS 2008 and EBS 2008. So we have JUST had the launch of the product here in Australia this week. The next version has been 5 years coming, and people have been wanting information for quite some time now. Microsoft have been slowly releasing information for the past 12 months, and in June this year, I was part of a road show around in which we did release a fair bit of information. Microsoft via it s blogs have also released a fair bit of information along the way too. So I need to ask a few questions.
Have Microsoft released too much too soon?
In response to community requests, has Microsoft released all the good stuff before the product was even fully baked?
Has the community got an unfair expectation on what other information is ready to be released?
Is it fair to Microsoft for the community to be criticising it for releasing the information that they themselves asked for before the official product release?
What are your thoughts?
The provision of technical material to partners is an important extension of the marketing process. So if you look at it in marketing terms, repetition is an important part of conveying the message.
It would be fine if, like Wayne and Travis and a number of others I could name, one eagerly devoured every piece of material that comes from Microsoft in the SBS space. However, many, many, people do not do so. If they attended this event and not one of the previous events then Microsoft have reached a new part of their audience and achieved their goal.
One of the things they must be hoping to do is to encourage new partners to sign up on the back of SBS 2008. Those people, by definition, are not in the loop and may not have seen the previous material.
How nice it would be for Microsoft if they could market to 10,000 potential and existing partners and find that they had all perfectly absorbed all the material previously disseminated, so there was no need to repeat themselves at all.
Daniel Mundy says
I think it’s great to get so much information pre-launch. At the end of the day they still need officially “launch” the product. Even if we already know what we’re getting.