Getting to Know Your Users Better: The trade show survey

The presentation will share how the NetApp Information Engineering team surveyed almost 600 users at two trade shows in 2015 and gained key insights into how NetApp users like to consume technical information. The presentation will explain how we motivated users to seek out a tiny documentation outpost in a sea of identical booths. It will describe how we got users to spend time talking to us. It will describe what we found out, including the types of documentation users prefer, their favorite file formats, how and when they look at documentation, the mobile devices they prefer, and how much they value localization. We’ll also detail what we did with the information when we got back to the office.

What can attendees expect to learn?

Attendees will learn that gathering information from users in a trade-show setting can be done efficiently and cheaply. Do you want your upper management to appreciate the technical documentation team? One sure-fire way to get appreciated is to gather customer data that nobody else has. Web-based survey tools are easy to use and provide free metrics. This information can be shared with upper management to improve the profile of the technical documentation team — not to mention the quality of your company’s products.

Meet the Presenter

MarkForryMark Forry is an information architect and technical writer at NetApp (data storage and management), based in Sunnyvale, CA. A 26-year veteran in technical publications, he has been instrumental in DITA and CMS implementation at NetApp. His current responsibilities include OS product library architecture, content development process in a tiered resource environment, and metrics collection and analysis for content web traffic and customer satisfaction. Currently residing in Hungary, he is delighted to be a returning CIDM conference presenter, combining first-time Best Practices conference attendance and a visit with his grandchildren in Santa Fe!

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