What we can learn about presenting from Minecraft for Microsoft HoloLens product demo

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Search for product demos on YouTube, try a few times, and you will find that most of them are boring, uninspiring and even a failure. But there are also a few of exceptions that can teach us many things about how to present a product. One of those is Minecraft for Microsoft HoloLens product demo.

This excellent product demo occurred in June 2015 during the Electronic Entertainment Expo 2015 in Los Angeles. Microsoft and Mojang (a video games studio) partnered to present a demo of the game Minecraft for a brand new platform: Microsoft HoloLens. The presenters were Lydia Winters (Mojang) and Saxs Persson (Microsoft). It was a big success. People at the auditorium were clapping and cheering.

 

What made this demo so effective and what can we learn from it?

Let’s dissect it. This product demo had the three sections that I usually recommend: Pre-demo, Demo and Wrap-up.

 

PRE-DEMO

Presenters’ introduction

“Let me introduce you Brand Director Mojang, Lydia Winters.” That’s how the event host introduced Lydia. Once onstage, and after saying few words, Lydia introduced Saxs Persson. The introductions showed both credibility and teamwork.

Set the context

“The game has changed millions of lives including mine.” “Now we’re going to show you a version of Minecraft built specifically for Microsoft HoloLens.” With these words Lydia told her own story and gave some hints of what was the new thing that they were going to present.

“To show a demo today we’re using a special camera. This display technique of putting HoloLens right on the camera itself allows the entire audience to see the hologram.” With these words Saxs explained the technicalities used during this demo.

Both presenters gave precise hints of what was coming. Short and effective.

 

DEMO

This is the demo itself. The presenters had clearly prepared a script, something you can notice especially when Lydia was speaking. They also crafted a specific “WOW moment” during the demo.

WOW moment

After the two presenters had been playing Minecraft on the wall, Lydia suggested Saxs showing the audience something different. At that moment Saxs walked towards an empty table, looked at it and uttered “Create World!” Immediately the full hologram of a Minecraft world was gradually built in front of him, and the audience could see it on an extra big screen. Impressive.

 

WRAP-UP

The wrap-up has two sections: reiterating the message (what you have just showed or demonstrated), and your call-to-action.

Reiterate message

“From playing Minecraft on your wall to an entire world right on your table, Microsoft HoloLens gives the community a different way to play the worlds they already love.” With this words Lydia reiterated the new experience that was presented.

Call-to-action

“We’ll have even more Minecraft news to share in the next weeks.” Lydia announced that more was coming soon.

 

Conclusion

What was the best of this product demo?

  1. The WOW moment. The “Create World” moment was so effective and impressive that could stick in people’s minds. On your next presentation you can also create a similar effect by using elements of both surprise and contrast.
  2. Clear messages. Most of the messages were short and effective, as you could see especially in the Pre-demo and Wrap-up. Lydia’s own story of joining Mojang helped to connect herself with the audience, with an implicit message “I am one of you.”
  3. Great delivery. Both Lydia and Saxs were really enthusiastic and showed passion for their products. It was really contagious. They were really well prepared too. You can compare this demo with Microsoft HoloLens demo at BUILD 2015 which was dull and less impressive. It’s not just about the technology.

Minecraft for Microsoft HoloLens product demo was a real show that both educated and entertained customers, and undoubtedly “sold” the product.

I hope this will give you ideas and inspiration for your next product demo, presentation or talk.

What will be the “Create World” on your next presentation?

 

If you want to learn more about how to create and deliver effective product demos, you can pre-order Oscar’s book “Create and Deliver a Killer Product Demo” which is on Indiegogo until Friday June 10.

 

About the Author: Oscar Santolalla

Oscar SantolallaHost and Producer of the public speaking podcast Time to Shine. Oscar has spent more than three years as a Product Manager in the software industry. Either onstage or on blogs he advocates making technical presentations and product demos that engage and inspire. Currently writing the book “Create and Deliver a Killer Product Demo

My book’s crowdfunding campaign: http://indiegogo.com/projects/create-and-deliver-a-killer-product-demo/

AUTHOR

Meri-Tuuli Nevala

Meri-Tuuli on Havainin inbound strategist ja digitaalisen median osaaja. Koulutukseltaan hän on FM Informaatiotutimuksen ja interaktiivisen median alalta. Meri-Tuulin intohimona on käytettävyys, hakukoneoptimointi ja analytiikka sekä erilaiset tekniset ratkaisut ja integraatiot. Käyttäjä- ja teknologiaorientituneella otteellaan Meri-Tuuli tuottaa toimivia ja tehokkaita sisältöjä ja ratkaisuja asiakkaiden markkinointikampanjoihin. Twitter: MeriTuuliNevala LinkedIn: Meri-Tuuli Nevala

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