Friday, January 8, 2010

Google's lesson on presentations

Presentations matter, and this week we have been provided with a good example that proves the point well.

This week Google have entered the mobile phone market. Their phone, the Nexus, is the company’s bid to join the likes of Apple at the top of the smart phone market. The launch took place at Google’s Mountainview campus in California and… well… it sucked.

Above you can see a picture from the “big” event. I am not really quite sure what Google were thinking of when they decided to launch of the Nexus in this manner. To begin with it appears as though they had no more than a few dozen reporters and bloggers in the room, they also appear to have used a screen completely incapable of projecting pictures with any sort of clarity or contrast and finally, the presenter appears to have resigned himself to standing behind an old overhead projector/lectern which isn’t even in use. The whole affair seems awfully amateurish.

Compare this to the launch of a similar phone 2 years ago. Mr. Jobs always puts on a show and didn’t disappoint with his launch of the iPhone. Jobs’ presenting style is the stuff of legend and has even been the subject of one or two books. He practises tirelessly and makes sure that everything is just perfect… he most certainly doesn’t stand behind a podium. He also ensures that his slides are perfect… I can’t imagine that Steve Jobs would have settled for a small room with a screen washed out with too much light.

Some people might say “hey it’s just a presentation, what’s the big deal”, well the problem is that these product launch presentations are a vital piece of the marketing process and like it or not journalists who are uninspired or confused by your product launch pitch will write uninspired and confused articles about your product. Or perhaps write nothing at all.

When Steve Jobs launched the iPhone tech bloggers and journalists whipped the web up into an utter frenzy with articles about the new phone, when Google launched the Nexus with their lukewarm presentation the journalists appear to have relied with a collective shrug of the shoulders.

CNBC’s “Fast Money” news segment even took time to actively slate the presentation (one of the analysts even called the presenter a “Johnson”, an American reference lost on me perhaps), the presentation has now not only created little interest it has attracted negative coverage… this really isn’t the way things should have gone.

This week Google taught us a lesson, presentations matter.

Originally posted on my company blog @ www.clearlypresentable.wordpress.com

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