What is the perceived value of your new product features ?

I’m currently working on an internal sales training regarding the next release of our API Management product. While preparing my material it turned out I was not fully satisfied with my notes and wanted to explain in a more graphical way which were the different types of features of our new release.

There are indeed three main types of features:

  • Features that create Value to attract customers
  • Features that ensure Quality for reputation and customer satisfaction and retention
  • Features that create Innovation to differentiate your product from the rest

After a few thoughts, I decided to leverage the Kano model which is very useful to position features on a map.

Kano was a Japanese professor who designed a model that describes three unique types of customer requirements:

  • The basic requirements (called by Kano “Must-be” quality): those are features that MUST be in your product. They are taken for granted by your customers and result in customer dissatisfaction when not fulfilled. They represent the price on entry of the market.
  • The performance requirements (called by Kano “One-dimensional” quality) : those are features that result in satisfaction when fulfilled and in dissatisfaction when not fulfilled. The level of satisfaction/dissatisfaction is proportional to the level of achievement/non-achievement.
  • The excitement requirements (called by Kano “Attractive” quality): those are features are also called “WOW Factor” or “USP” (Unique Selling Proposition). They delight the customer when delivered but don’t cause dissatisfaction when not achieved. This type of features incorporates a level of “excitment”, spurs customer imagination and makes him discover what he never thought of before.

This means you can classify your product features into one of those three categories. You might also have features that don’t fall into this classification that are called by Kano as follows:

  • Indifferent quality: These features are neither good nor bad and they don’t result in either customer satisfaction or customer dissatisfaction. They are often features that need to be done for internal architecture design and better code maintainability.
  • Reverse quality: I like this type of features because illustrates the paradox of  human nature. Those features generate dissatisfaction proportional to the level of fulfillment.  This usually due to the fact that the customers might not like it for personal reasons.

The other interesting aspect of the Kano model is that the “Excitement requirements” evolve to the “Basic requirements” and need to be replaced by new “Excitement requirements” through innovation to keep differentiating from competition.

The Kano model can be represented graphically as follows:

Kano Model
Source: kanomodel.com

To conclude, please check out this excellent video made by KanoModel.com

How to build great software demo videos ?

We live in a world of communication. More than ever, software vendors need to communicate loud to get spotted by their target customers. And this is the responsibility of the marketing team to identify the most efficient ways to promote the products and know-how of your company.

Whitepapers, datasheets, webinars are good assets to generate interest in top of funnel acquisition campaigns but once people start to show some sign of interest, a demonstration of your product can accelerate the conversion process and make the difference with competition.

Here are a few tips to build great product demo videos:

 

Give me access

Get access to the product. This statement might sound basic but you might be surprised to see how many software vendors don’t offer an easy access to their products internally. Most on-premises solutions require complex installation and there is no central internal place you can connect to access your software easily for demo. Even SaaS solutions might not offer an easy access to their internal teams due to difficulties to get around the complex account provisioning process – as an internal employee, for example, you need special rights and do not have to pay for the service. When such an access exists, the version might be old because this is not a top priority internally. So, the goal here it to get an early access to the latest release to be able to promote the new product features efficiently.

KISS - Keep it Simple and Stupid

Identity a series of short scenarios focusing on the strongest value proposition. Your product does surely a lot of things. But keep in mind that customers expect easy to use software. The new paradigm is now “Do less but do it great“. Goal is not to show plenty of features that are in most cases useless to the majority (the 80/20 rule) but to focus on the core features and make them the simplest and most intuitive, on top of a very performant infrastructure with no downtime and a high speed. So, pick up 3 to 5 basic scenarios that do the job and don’t be frustrated to not show everything your product can do.

Script software demo scenarioTest your scenarios. After defining the scenarios, test them “as a dummy” and identify the points of friction. By “points of friction”, I designate the moments when the experience is less fluid – due to bugs and poor design. Be very careful of simplicity. The navigation must be intuitive, simple and efficient (no more than 3 clicks to perform a simple operation). Duration is also important: a demo video should not last more than 5 minutes too keep people interested. If your scenario is too long, split it into two videos. Last, define a title that mentions the value proposition explained in the video.

Script your scenarios. Once your scenarios are well defined, start to write a script. Writing a script is essential to have a perfect speech. Share it with other people – this is important to get feedbacks from other team members – and improve it. Think of testing your script multiple times to make sure you don’t miss anything. Last, if you are working in software, better have a video in English. So if you are like me not a native speaker, ask a native speaker to make edits to your script.

Screen recording

Find the right voice. Now that you have very solid scenarios with their scripts, you need to find THE voice. This is something to think of carefully as this will have a strong impact on the quality of your video. Take a voice that is clear and not too high nor too deep. Of course, if you record your video in English and you are not a native speaker, I encourage you to ask an American or English colleague to  achieve more professional result.

Record your video. This step might seem faster but is actually very time consuming. You also need to have the right tools for that. There is for example Camstasia that is a very good tool but if you search on Google, you will find other tools that might better fit your needs and budget. An interest feature of such a tool is to be able to cut the video if needed as you might record it in several pieces.

Prepare your video asset.  After recording, you need to spend some time to cut and reassemble it to get the final version. Think also of inserting an introductory slide with a title and if possible a call to action at the end of your video.

Publish it: Here you are ! Publish your video on your Youtube channel. Your video asset is starting a long life. The average life of such a media on the Web up to two years, potentially meaning plenty of upcoming leads! If you haven’t done it in the video, insert a call to action link in the Youtube description. In order to optimize your SEO on Youtube, think of filling the title, the description and the other meta tags properly. Last but not least, don’t only think Youtube, multiply your video presence on other video platforms and use the embed code to have it displayed on many relevant blogs and web sites.

Watch out this interesting video I discovered on Youtube:

Dubai and the UAE – The amazing place

I’ve just spent two weeks in Dubai and the neighboring Emirates and I discovered an amazing booming country …

Amazing because of its history: 50 years ago, this place was only the desert.

dubai_desert
The desert can be discovered with Jeeps or Quads

 

dubai_sea
View from the Arabic Sea

 

Amazing because of the speed of construction: there are roadworks everywhere and new buildings are popping up like mushrooms out of the desert. For people living there, they need to update their GPS software almost every month …

Dubai Marina
Dubai Marina

 

Amazing because of the mix of modernity and tradition: there are many towers and the variety of the architecture is very rich.

Dubai Atlantis
Dubai Atlantis

 

Architecture prodigy in Abu Dhabi
Architecture prodigy in Abu Dhabi

 

Abu_Dhabi_Mosquee
Abu Dhabi Grand Mosque

 

Amazing because of its surprises: The UAE offer a lot of surprises.

  • Burj Khalifa: the highest tower in the world in Dubai
  • Dubai Mall:: one of the largest shopping mall in the world
  • Dubai aiport: one of the largest airport in the world that has become a huge hub between Europe and Asia with its famous airliner Emirates.
burj_khalifa
Burj Khalifa at night with laser show on it

 

Dubai Burj Khalifa

 

Dubai mall's aquarium
Dubai mall’s aquarium

 

Toy store in Abu Dhabi
Toy store in Abu Dhabi

 

I encourage you to have a look at the list of UAE Guiness World Records that is very impressive.

 

Amazing because of its development strategy: Dubai is a place for business; to prepare for the next decades, they have invested a lot of money in digital business and smart city technologies. In terms of IT and software, they have the big advantage to not have any legacy to maintain, so that they can invest directly in the most modern technology.

Dubai has announced a Smart City initiative that will leverage the Internet of Everything to become one of the world’s most connected and sustainable cities with the Expo as the platform for unveiling this vision.

Dubai has recently won the bid to host the World Expo 2020, with the theme of ‘Connecting Minds, Creating the Future’.

In today’s highly interconnected world, a renewed vision of progress and development based on shared purpose and commitment is key. While a single human mind, and individual country or a specific community is both unique and remarkable, it is by working collaboratively that we truly advance” – His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai

Dubai smart parking
Dubai smart parking – Pay your parking with SMS