There is a debate inside Microsoft around what IT Pros actually need in terms of content from Microsoft. There are many technologies that have been introduced in the marketplace that have turned traditional IT concepts upside down. Virtualization, Software + Services, SAAS, Web Apps, and SharePoint are just some of the topics that many IT professionals are trying to come to grips with. Combine this with the fact that IT pros sitting in enterprise have much different skill sets than those managing an SMB. This article is more focused on the latter SMB crowd. Enterprise architects and IT professionals have to read documentation and scientifically deploy pilots to prove a business case to senior leadership.
Sadly, for too long, individuals in the SMB space including a large contingent of partners are struggling to ramp up with current technology. Is it acceptable that there are Microsoft partners and so called “IT Pros” that still have yet to develop a deployment strategy for Vista and Windows 7? If you were to ask a general IT Pro about Windows 7 deployment, they would probably ignorantly recommend skipping a Vista pilot and going straight to Windows 7. Being in IT means you have to constantly research, test, validate, and analyze technology. There is a very academic quality to it. However, I seem to meet more and more people who are content with doing the least amount of work possible to achieve only baseline results. Is this professional? Is this going to help your business develop and grow?
Why am I going on a seemingly harsh tirade on our own customers? Well, I’m not because at the end of the day, I believe this is a Microsoft problem. It is a problem we created and it is a problem we must solve but we need feedback. I’m of the opinion that IT pros need to be inspired. I believe that they are fully capable of reading a manual or referencing quality documentation, however, they need to be inspired to pickup such documentation. This is where I believe Microsoft is failing. Microsoft is failing to provide the IT community at large with inspiration and the simple explanations of very complex subject matter. Some senior IT pros have a different opinion stating that marketing should be to the point, boring, and dull because IT pros don’t like corporate BS. What if were to replace the BS with fluff, but fluff that is fun, quirky and entertaining?
Consumer marketing at Microsoft is getting much better. They are starting to understand what resonates with the average “Joe.” Like consumers, IT pros have problems that need solving and as such, marketing should theoretically reflect this flow, but does it? I don’t believe it does, and I need some help from the community. Watch these three videos below and take the poll. This is obviously not a scientific study. Should more technology marketing targeting IT Pros be like these videos? Do videos like these make you more confident and inspired to actually try and pilot technology? Watch the videos and take the poll.
Few people like change, but change is inevitable and you can either be a follower or a leader. Microsoft believes that people should be their own leader and that technology has a strong place to enable this. Help us to help you.