GNOME Marketing kick-off brainstorming event at Collaboration Summit?

Hello GNOME Marketers,

Is there any possibility of participating in this event remotely?  I am a marketing lecturer (what Americans would call a "professor") who has been using GNOME for many years and has previously tried to help out.

What I would like to contribute is something along the lines of:

1. Marketing is NOT selling + advertising + public relations
2. Marketing is a business philosophy that is customer-centric
3. What is a marketer?  A marketer is the agent of the customer within the firm

None of this is new, of course.  However I have some experience in segmentation, targeting and positioning (particularly segmentation).

If you are looking for a creative person to come up with catchy slogans or stunning visuals, I'm not your man however.



Thanks in advance,


jwilliams gnome org

2009/1/31 Dave Neary <dneary gnome org>


I will be there I hope, and would of course participate.

Stormy Peters wrote:
> Will you (or could you be) at the Linux Foundation Collaboration Summit?
> I'd like to have a brainstorming/kickoff event for GNOME Marketing team. I'd
> like to talk about:
>    - Who are target audiences are
>    - How we define GNOME to those audiences. (I think "What is GNOME?" is a
>    marketing question we desperately need to solve.)
>    - What we'd like those audiences to do. (Use GNOME, spread the word?,
>    build it into their products, give us money, ???)
>    - What we'd like to stand for.
>    - How we plan to get the message out.
>    - Strategies to reach those audiences/markets in 2009.
>    - Anything else we should talk about?

I'm not saying this should be the definitive answer, but several years
ago I wrote a series of blog entries on this which I think is still

In addition I gave a presentation at FOSDEM more oriented communication
(stuff to do to spread GNOME) which I have uploaded to slideshare:

If I remember correctly I said that repeatedly discussing existential
stuff like "What is GNOME" was no longer productive, and that we should
move on to an actual "doing stuff" phase.

The doing stuff can be top-down or bottom-up.

Top-down stuff includes things like providing budget, infrastructure,
servers & bandwidth, and co-ordinating disperse efforts (think spread

Bottom-up stuff is everything else (the "actual work"). Meeting people.
Writing books & articles. Giving presentations to LUGs and universities
and conferences. Lobbying local politicians to make them aware of free
software at a city level. These kinds of things should be totally
decentralised, except in so far as there is value to all in knowing what
you're doing and who you're talking to.

On the top-down stuff, we're not in terrible shape. We're missing some
things like demo storyboards which I think would be useful - but at
least on accessibility we now have some good material there too (see
Willie Walker's screencasts and my "digital ramps and handrails"

We could certainly get more and better quality material here - I'd love
to see a couple of more storyboards & demos for things like "Just Works"
stuff in GNOME, one on developer tools, and some fact sheets & tours of
individual packages like Gnumeric, Abiword, Rhythmbox, ... - more
web-casts, but also reproducable stuff where anyone can download the
sample files used in the tutorial and follow a script while explaining
what's happening.

Aside from that, we have the wiki, a dedicated mailing list for
representatives from user groups (currently underused I might add),
event boxes allowing the easy set-up of conference stands, a dedicated
server (run by GNOME Hispano) for GNOME user groups, some merchandising
that we can bulk-buy & ship out to people on demand, and a budget. So
we're not in terrible shape.

What I missed at the time, and what is really the bridge between these
two, is recruitment. This is both bottom-up and top-down. We can be
actuvely recruiting people to communicate about GNOME at a local level,
in the way we find people to man GNOME stands in conferences.

On the bottom-up stuff we're doing less well (but perhaps we're just not
doing as well presenting it?).

On a personal note, in 2008, I gave presentations on GNOME accessibility
in 3 different conferences, and at a local library here in Lyon, I have
worked with Handicap International here in Lyon, and hope to start
working with them getting one of their patients set up with a 100% free
software solution, I have signed a book deal to write a GNOME Mobile
book to come out early 2010, I helped man GNOME stands at 3 different
conferences (Solutions Linux, RMLL, JDLL), and was the organiser for one
of those, and I have written a regular bi-monthly set of articles on
GNOME technologies and news for a popular French magazine, and
occasional columns for a popular UK magazine.

Looking at the GNOME calendar in Google Calendars
we had a presence in the following conferences in 2008:

Solutions Linux

COPU Developers Summit, China

Idlelo3 (not sure if we had anyone there in the end)

Collaboration Summit



Maemo Summit

Ohio Linux Fest
Boston Summit
GNOME Forum, Brasil

Speck hackfest


Now, I know this isn't exhaustive. On top of that, I also remember
SCALE, the GTK+ summit, the user interface summit, a conference in
London, another couple of conferences in France, my presentation to the
municipal library in Lyon, and I'm doubtless missing many others too.

A good step to better fulfilling our central role is to clarify
communication channels, and to really get this calendar rolling as a
reference for all things GNOME. An aggregator of everything written
about GNOME outside the domain (things like Paul Cooper's
interview a couple of weeks ago) would also be brilliant. As a stop-gap,
everything tagged with "gnome press" in gets aggregated on (a site we don't really publicise that much).

I agree that there are more substantial questions that we can focus on
as an organisation, things which work well as a top-down marketing
(notably, handling our relationships with the press and enterprise and
lobbying governments and distributors). But we really have a huge amount
of stuff that we can attack right away by doing better with one task:
recruit advocates.


Dave Neary
GNOME Foundation member
dneary gnome org
marketing-list mailing list
marketing-list gnome org

John Williams
Professional Idiot

John Williams
Professional Idiot

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