#OfficeOutside – Romancing The Product Truth Of The New Microsoft Office Suite

To mark the launch of the new Microsoft Office suite and demonstrate its key product truths of flexibility, productivity and seamless usability, I got every Microsoft Malaysia team member – from the most senior leader to the latest hire – to spend 2013 seconds (the year of the product launch, which was about 33 minutes) to work on our laptops, tablets, phones, and various devices in the transit station of the KLCC Twin Towers, during the busiest time of the day: lunch hour.

This stunt was designed as an outdoor “flash mob”-styled  launch: we dressed in noticeable the bright orange t-shirts and created a buzz as we demonstrated to both media and consumers alike that doing work no longer needs to be confined to the physical office. We romanced the core product truth: the new Office gave people the unfettered freedom to do things where and when they want, across a wide range of devices, whether laptops, tablets, or smartphones. We showed how this wasn’t just another version of Microsoft Office; we were introducing a brand new product that was reinvented as a cloud service.

The activation captured the imagination of both the media and general public, who were able to see the New Office in action. We landed highly positive and extensive coverage from top-tier print, broadcast, and online media on the New Office, as well as for the engaging, people-centric approach to the launch. It was also a great internal communications piece and rallying point for the team – everyone was in a festive mood as we descended to the train station after having a catered lunch together in the office.

After the launch, we extended the campaign through social media, where we had a small team work at various locations around Kuala Lumpur every Friday. We then posted our location on Facebook and Twitter and invited people to find us. Those who did were given a free one-year subscription to the new Office suite.

Ultimately, this creative and cost-friendly (we only needed to pay for the a staff lunch and t-shirts) approach provided a refreshing demo for both the media and the public, clearly demonstrating the New Office’s main features in a real-life setting; choice, flexibility, connectivity and a smarter way to do work anytime, anywhere, and on any internet-enabled device.

I couldn’t have been prouder to have led this initiative and to have enjoyed the enthusiastic support of all our team members!

Edit: It was nice to receive an industry award for this initiative. This was also hailed as an innovative campaign that was replicated in several other Microsoft subsidiaries throughout the region subsidiaries, and adopted as a worldwide best practice by the Office team at Corporate HQ (also nabbing me several more awards and recognition globally as well as regionally along the way).

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