Technical Communication is a Revenue Driver
Technical communication goes beyond in-product documentation. Online help, knowledge bases, policies and procedures, regulatory submissions, tutorials, training materials and data sheets are also technical communication. While in-product documentation is mandated by law in many countries, there is a business reason for technical communication which goes beyond meeting the legal requirement.
In general, technical communication serves both internal and external customers. For example, HR and finance departments aim to improve the adoption of its offerings. Employee Share Purchase Program run by an employer can be considered as an offering from HR and finance departments. Employees of the organization are internal customers and documentation of policies and procedures is important for the success of the program.
Most products or services follow a typical adoption cycle – awareness (get customer’s attention), create interest which may lead to a favorable evaluation and hence, a desire to purchase the product. Marketing communication can help in generating awareness and interest, while technical communication plays a strong role in converting this interest into a desire to purchase or use the offering. This is especially important in complex applications or business processes.
If technical communication is effective, more customers understand the offering in shortest possible time and hence, lead to higher sales or adoption. For example,
- If you use a Captivate demo to illustrate a workflow, more customers will know how to use the product. In the example of Employee Share Purchase Program, a demonstration of how to log-in to a system, complete the forms, and use the share trading site can increase the subscription to the program.
- If a 3D model of an automobile assembly is used (vis-à-vis a screenshot), it is much easier for customers and vendors to comprehend how their product will fit in the assembly.
Products and services which have strong partner networks (trainers, developers, consultants, vendors, channel or technology partners), it is important to have a common shared understanding about the offering and hence, a need for more effective technical communication.
In my opinion, technical communication can drive revenue. What do you think? Please share your opinion.