Having been an IT worker prior to becoming a marketing writer, I’ve been on both sides of this.
Don’t take my word for it. Go to your favorite IT pro and ask: What do you think when someone tells you a technology solution integrates seamlessly?
Then wait for the laugh.
(Please be respectful of the IT pro’s time. They are overworked and underpaid while doing a thankless job. They know people only think of them when their devices stop working.)
If the IT pro you’re asking is experienced, you may hear only a chuckle.
If extremely experienced, you may have to settle for a forced smile and, “Thanx for asking my opinion. Sorry, I have to get back to work.” (That example may be a politer response than you’ll receive. I’m Canadian; we’re polite.)
Yet marketing writers refer to technology as “seamless” all the time. Practically every software product is sold as a seamless solution. Why?
Few marketers understand the inner workings of technology, nor do they know what’s involved with the integration process. If a product manager or salesperson says, “Our technology integrates seamlessly,” then the marketer believes the technology is seamless and proceeds to write that feature into the marketing content.
The problem arises when a solution is marketed as seamless to an audience that doesn’t believe in seamless solutions.
Suppose for example, a CIO or CTO asks an IT professional to research and prepare a short list of solutions that perform a specific function… let’s say data loss protection (DLP).
Now in addition to his or her regular workload, the IT pro must learn about DLP… the available DLP solutions… how each works… whether or not each will work with the existing infrastructure the IT department already supports… and which fit into the business workflow, because if users don’t like a solution they won’t use it.
When conducting this type of research, it’s human nature to eliminate solutions as soon as possible, in hope of narrowing the final number of search results presented to the boss.
So the searching IT professional, who has learned from experience that technology rarely integrates seamlessly, comes upon a solution promising seamless integration. At this point it’s easy to laugh at the seamless claim, remove that solution from consideration, and continue searching.
It doesn’t matter if yours is the unicorn that truly does integrate seamlessly… your claim removed your solution from contention.
Unless you can prove it conclusively with a demonstration video that’s freely available to all, you risk ridicule from your audience, who knows better.
Marketers: unless discussing the work of a skilled surgeon or seamstress, resist the temptation to use seamless.
Please share your thoughts in the comments section on LinkedIn. Thank you.