Re: real marketing or just catchy slogans?

hi again, and thanks to all for replying.  i'll try to answer some of
your comments, at least from my point of view.

> The selling/advertising does not stop you from doing marketing. Should we
> stop going to trade fairs, close down our website, and stop announcing
> releases while we wait for the traditional marketing to reach step one?

it's not "me", it's us.  we are supposed to be a marketing team, so
we're supposed to be focused in pretty much the same direction (not
100% the same, but at least the basics).  that's why i'm trying to
gather some consensus, instead of starting yet another individual
uncoordinated effort.

and no i'm not suggesting "let's not advertise", but "let's not put
the focus in advertising".  imho we can't put our focus in advertising
until we agree on the basics: what our target market is, what they
want, what we have to offer to them, and what we can do to fix those
things they want.

> The target market discussion is another one which we've had at least 3
> times. I'm pretty clear on what our target markets should be:

ok you're pretty clear on that, but is there a consensus?  i don't
mean absolute consensus, but are we at least pointing in the same
direction?  if we are, i haven't seen it.  and if we're not, is it too
crazy to suggest that we work on a minimum agreement?

> ... answers to the following questions for each of those
> target markets.
>   - What do we have to offer?
>   - What are we missing?
>   - What are we doing to fill the gaps?
>   - What could we be doing that we're not?
>   - How can we get at the people involved?

i agree 100%, and that's why i don't like the "let's advertise,
marketing will come later" approach: what will you advertise (and how
and to whom) if you don't have answers to those questions?

> A slogan is the core of most campaigns. With a theme and a suitable slogan
> we can start a little campaign. Because the theme and slogan will be
> vague ...

advertising (amongst other things) builds positioning, and positioning
IS the brand.  you can't go for a certain positioning in people's
minds, and the next year go for a completely different one...
coherence is one of the keys in communication.  if you're not gonna be
coherent, you better don't say anything.

so a slogan/theme can be vague, but it MUST be coherent with your
positioning, which must be coherent trough time.  for example, i've
read the "beautiful" slogans many times, and that's obviously not
coherent with the positioning i think we have (or should have).

gnome is not "simply beautiful" (as in "pretty with no other
purpose"), that's kde... gnome is elegant, cool, "the beauty of
simplicity" like they said before (there you have one coherent slogan,
which merges two of our core strenghts: elegance and ease-of-use).

anyway, we can't discuss slogans without discussing positioning;
that's my point.

> If we don't plan to target these people differently, then there isn't much
> point in targetting them separately.

i still think we should target them differently (within the same
coherent positioning, of course), but that's one more thing we should
try to agree on, before proceeding in different directions.

> > This was the list's problem from the start; I believe. I was intended
> > to stimulate promotion -- not marketing.

uh... ok.  then maybe you chose the wrong name, and john williams
wrote the wrong article  :)

> >   * No 'exclusive' influence on developers or product decisions. Even
> >     the board is unable to do that.

i never meant "let's make developers our slaves" :)

i just said it'd be much more efficient if we sent user feedback (like
the one i compiled) in the name of the gnome marketing team, with the
endorsement of several gnome foundation directors.

yes, i could file yet another bug in bugzilla in my name, but that
doesn't sound like the optimal channel, does it?  there's a reason why
we are the gnome marketing team...

> I agree that we have a problem empowering people. People on the list
> seem to be waiting for direction (from you, me or Luis...).

no i'm not waiting for anyone's direction; i have my own, thank you  :)

what i suggested is that we should ALL try to come up with a marketing
strategy; this is supposed to be a team and not a sum of individual

it's not like john makes the strategy and murray makes the advertising
and andreas makes the posters; all those efforts must be coordinated
and coherent, because minimum consensus must be reached within any
team, no matter the cost.

and when i talked about "huge names", i wasn't asking for direction
but endorsement for particular actions.

> How good is our feedback loop? What Santiago is saying, if I understand
> correctly, is that right now we don't seem to have one, and one would be
> nice.

that's exactly what i was saying: if we have no effective channel to
deliver the feedback we gather, towards the ones who should be getting
it (developers), what's the point in collecting that feedback?

> >   * There's no way to break to circle: No data -> No target (market) ->
> >     No data -> ....
> We have lots of data. Every GNOME release, we get data. So far, we've
> simply had no way to analyse, synthesis and transmit that data to the
> people who need to get it. This is the most important job the marketing
> community must do.

i couldn't agree more.  problem is that when we had that data, nothing
was done with it  :(

> > Activity on mailing lists and bugzilla is the best way to do that. And
> > getting to know the developers involved :)
> Right, but mailings lists and bugzilla are not the best interface for
> newcomers.

no that's not our main problem... mailing lists and bugzilla aren't
the best interface not only for newcomers, but also for a team like

so you say we should just file a simple bug, after we've collected and
processed the information?  the marketing team's output should have a
much better and much more direct channel, and i think we have the
tools to build it (but we just don't care).

> People like Santiago
> may hear from us through rss feeds and planets, and any other web based
> interface with a proper structure & layout, and a reasonable usability.

i can handle bugzilla; thank you  :)

i just don't think it's the proper channel for anything other summing
up a bunch of individual suggestions / complaints, and i'd expect our
output to be much more than that.

> Most of us are primarly
> involved in other parts of the project, we love this corner of GNOME but
> we spend time and energies when we have them.

i never demanded time from anyone; i'd never demand something i can't
give either, and even less to people who contribute to gnome much more
than i do.

i just asked for some consensus to build a strategy, and endorsement
for some particular actions... doesn't sound very time-consuming  :)

> Our current objectives and strategy have been mainly individual.

well that doesn't sound like a team to me  :)

individual uncoordinated efforts can be worse than nothing: if i go in
one direction and you go in the exact opposite, not only the net
effect is zero, but we end up wasting time and effort, which equals to
lack of motivation.

i'd rather see one step in a coherent direction (decided by consensus
of course), than one hundred individual uncoordinated steps.

> we have a great product: GNOME. Many marketing teams are just in the
> opposite solution: as a team they are great and well organised but they
> need to sell crap.
> I much prefer our situation.

sadly, maybe i'd prefer the other.  an organized marketing team with a
crappy product could find out what's wrong, come up with ways to fix
it, get those things fixed, come up with a new branding strategy, and
then advertise the product (and 6 = profit!!! :P).

we, on the other hand, have a great product but can't do much about
it, at least within our current situation  :(

Santiago Roza
Departamento I+D - Thymbra
santiago roza thymbra com

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