Fooled by proximity?

Almost the same moment I read that for the fourth year in a row executives rate BI the top tech priority in 2009, I hear Tableau Software’s news: last week saw the most downloads of trial software ever. “Not by a little, by a lot,” says marketing and PR VP Elissa Fink.

The poll of Australian executives, by Gartner, also indicated that purchases faced more scrutiny. The press release mentions “CFOs doing final negotiations on pricing and maintenance.” I assume that Australian business is not significantly different from U.S. business.

Tableau, of course, lands like a mint on most CFOs’ pillows. Remember the old Apple ad for the first iMac, which describes the “three steps to installation”: Step one, unpack. Step two, plug in. There was no step three. Tableau needing “maintenance”?

Fink can’t explain the surge. There’s been no recent change in marketing. Does the Gartner poll help explain it? Possibly.

I’m sorry if this sounds like marketing. I happen to like Tableau’s product, not to mention their foodie-friendly user conferences.

Let’s see what other new-wave, light-on-their-feet products might have news next week at the TDWI conference in Las Vegas.

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