One of the problems software vendors have faced for decades is making functional productivity tools seem sexy. Microsoft has been better at most at jazzing up its tools in promotional campaigns. The company was at it again during Ignite 2019 last week, debuting sizzle videos for its Tasks, Yammer, and Fluid Framework solutions.
Produced by design agency Tendril, the videos show a level of polish and production quality typically reserved for hardware launches, such as Surface devices. This points to Microsoft wanting to put more energy into its software products in an ever-increasingly competitive marketplace.
Of course, the services Microsoft is sexing up are hugely functional. Tools like Tasks and Yammer are mundane even if they get the job done. Microsoft’s videos make them seem like must-have exciting products.
Microsoft acquired Yammer in 2012 for $1.2 billion and has integrated the business social network into its services. If you are unfamiliar with Yammer, it gives users the ability to connect with others across an organization. It promotes working in collaboration and sharing ideas.
In its Video (above), Microsoft showcases its new design for Yammer, which includes new smaller buttons, avatars, and a dark mode. With the snappy editing and clean images, Microsoft is making Yammer seem fun to use (admittedly, it is a good-looking service that’s easy to navigate).
Tasks and Fluid Framework
It’s a similar story with Tasks, with the video highlighting the sleek new UI for the app, including new colors and almost transparent tasks. Of course, Microsoft uses its own Surface devices in all the videos.
Finally, Fluid Framework received a sexed-up video too. Launched earlier this year, Fluid Framework is billed as an easier way for developers to create more interactive tools for the web. It comes with co-authoring support through the web that is available with speed and at scale.
Check out the Fluid Framework and Tasks videos below: