The Microsoft Visual Studio Partner Program and GrapeCity Documents - A Product Launch Success Story

As an award-winning Microsoft Gold Certified Partner and premier Visual Studio Partner Program (VSPP), we have been working with the VSPP to promote the launch of a new product -- GrapeCity Documents.

GC Documents is an extensible API that allows developers to create, load, modify, and save Excel spreadsheets and PDF files in any .NET Standard 2.0 application. We took a multi-tiered approach to introducing the product to the developer community, including event promotions, social media enhancement, and public relations.

The launch of GrapeCity Documents

Documents was launched at the annual Microsoft Build conference in Seattle, Washington. Build is one of the largest development conferences in the world, with keynotes from Microsoft leaders, sessions about burgeoning technologies, and an exhibitor area for partner companies. GrapeCity received thousands of visitors to their exhibit space, with over 600 leads collected via electronic scanning device. Visitors were driven to the booth by the VSPP QR code contest, which provided each participating partner with a unique QR code for attendees to scan. If they scanned all QR codes, they were entered to win prizes like Xboxes and other Microsoft products. GrapeCity’s company information was also included in online and printed show materials along with the presentation displayed in the VSPP booth, giving us access to all 5000+ attendees.

As part of the VSPP, we also had access to the partner network for social media enhancement opportunities. Members of the VSPP participated in various development meetings prior to Build to create a listing of member social media tags, along with the news each company wanted to promote. Leading up to the show and during the Build event, participating companies created a digital echo chamber on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn by retweeting and sharing out VSPP content using MS Build hashtags, gaining invaluable impressions and social interactions. For example, GrapeCity garnered over 16,110 impressions, 16 retweets, 75 likes, and 11 profile clicks as a result of 24 total tweets.

The Microsoft Visual Studio Partner Program and GrapeCity Documents - A Product Launch Success Story

GrapeCity also took advantage of the Microsoft-provided press release quote offering that is part of the Visual Studio Partner Program. We simply provided a draft of a release outlining our new Documents product and Microsoft found an appropriate team member to provide a quote. In this case, Microsoft’s Shawn Nandi, Senior Director, Strategy & Partner for Azure at Microsoft Corp. said, “We are pleased to help introduce GrapeCity’s new Documents product line at Microsoft Build. Visual Studio and Microsoft Azure, combined with Documents, provide an improved development experience for our customers and ensure that our community of developers are able to deliver the best-of-class solutions across all platforms.”

The press release, distributed prior to Build via Cision/PR Newswire, resulted in 236 exact match pickups with a total potential audience of 81.7M throughout broadcast media, newspapers, online news sites and other influencers, and trade publications.

The Microsoft Visual Studio Partner Program proved to be an integral part of GrapeCity’s Documents new product launch. Our conference visibility, social media interactions, and public relations activities added enthusiasm and excitement around the launch. Our efforts were successful – creating more in-person discussions, impressions, and shares.

We hope to track sales of our Documents product and correlate them to our VSPP activities; stay tuned!

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