The awareness phase emphasizes three areas: enlisting people, managing communications, and hosting events. For details, see the Awareness tab of the Rollout and Adoption Workbook.
Your executive sponsor plays a critical role during the awareness phase. By signing the rollout emails and embracing the overall messaging of the awareness campaign, the executive sponsor brings legitimacy to the rollout effort, emphasizes the benefits of the new software, and excites and motivates users to start using Lync.
The Lync champions program—recruiting product evangelists from the power users in your organization—is another important aspect of your awareness campaign. Use these early adopters to help spread excitement, answer questions, and recruit others.
To begin, use the provided Lync Custom Intranet Site to create an internal Lync site. This site will be the home for information and Help and training resources during the rollout. For details, see the Lync Custom Intranet Site.
Then set up a Lync-specific email distribution list, and publicize the location of your Lync intranet site. You can encourage repeat visits by posting blog-style updates and starting a list of frequently asked questions.
Distribute posters and other awareness resources, and use the provided email templates to motivate users, build curiosity and anticipation, and inform users of the approaching rollout date. For details, see Email Templates and the Awareness and Education Materials Web-To-Print Website.
Hold small-scale awareness events, such as brown-bag lunches, or invite yourself to regular team or department meetings with the rollout group. These events don't have to be elaborate; all you really need to do is show the Lync What's New video, do a five-minute informal demonstration, and give people a chance to ask questions.
Immediately before the rollout, schedule a larger kickoff event with the participation of your executive sponsor and representatives from the training and support teams. Feature the Lync champions program, and include videos, demonstrations, and a question-and-answer session. For details, see the customizable Launch Presentation: Introducing Lync 2010.