[ubuntu-marketing] Marketing Strategy: What IS Marketing?

John Botscharow info at jbotscharow.com
Fri Jun 13 13:11:41 BST 2008

Hash: SHA1


Thank you for clarifying that for us all. Being relatively new here, I
was actually beginning to believe the myth myself, hard as it was to
try and swallow. 

And for the sake of honesty and openness, duplication, or as I like to
refer to it - secession - is an option that I am not ruling out for
myself. Depends on what happens here in the next few days. 

On Fri, 13 Jun 2008 13:56:21 +0200
"Tord Jansson" <tord.jansson at gmail.com> wrote:

> Just a quick note to clear up one central misconception:
> There is no one single way in which all FOSS projects work. Some
> people here are trying to spread that mantra but that is in my
> opinion a myth. There are tens of thousands of FOSS projects out
> there which are organized in totally different ways.
> They also very often have strong central leadership with a clear
> focus and a select few with commit access to CVS repositories,
> administration rights to web pages etc. They are seldom democratic in
> the normal sense with voting etc and many have even dictators for
> life (Theo DeRaadt of OpenBSD seems like a good example, correct me
> if I'm wrong).
> What separates them from non FOSS projects is mainly a high level of
> transparency and openness. The concept of being able to fork the
> project is also very central, making it easy for a group to break out
> and do their own thing if the current leadership doesn't work for
> them. This all helps to keep it honest and focused on the important
> goals since the whole project, including its leaders, easily can be
> replaced by a duplicate at any time.
> Regards,
> Tord
> 2008/6/13 John Botscharow <info at jbotscharow.com>:
> > Hash: SHA1
> >
> > For those who do not wish to read and/or participate in
> > strategy/structure discussions, feel free to ignore this message.
> >
> > I have heard a lot of discussion here about how things work in a
> > FOSS community and want to offer some insights on that and how it
> > relates to what marketing is. This is a lengthy post, but I would
> > very much appreciate you all reading it in its entirety before
> > commenting.
> >
> > When you talk about FOSS communities and how they do things, that
> > seems to be referring to communities of developers - operative word
> > here. That model works well with things like software packages,
> > documentation projects, translation projects. even artwork projects
> > - where you are producing a discrete tangible product. But
> > marketing, although it uses discrete tangible products, and one
> > might even consider a specific marketing campaign like the one I am
> > working out, as a tangible, discrete product, the real purpose of
> > marketing, especially marketing something like Ubuntu is much more
> > intangible.
> >
> > We are trying to change the way people think and feel and act -
> > their buying habits. Every marketing project is or should be
> > focused on that goal, and that goal alone. Yes, a specific
> > marketing project can have a more specific tangible goal, like
> > giving away 1000 LiveCDs at a convention, but that goal does not
> > exist outside of or separate from, the overall goal of changing
> > peoples minds and behavior.
> >
> > Any of these tangible discrete marketing projects that is not done
> > within the context of the greater marketing goal is not really
> > serious marketing. And because of this need for integration into
> > the greater marketing goal, there has to be some kind of "power"
> > structure - a lead marketer is the term used in a lot of marketing
> > agencies - to ensure that individual projects are integrated and
> > coordinated with each other. That is not something that can be done
> > by consensus or anarchy. Someone - either an individual or a
> > committee - has to take responsibility for that.
> >
> > This individual/committee has to take responsibility for achieving
> > the marketing needs and goals of the customer - in this case, the
> > Ubuntu community. Someone has to be held accountable for meeting
> > those needs.
> >
> > There is, IMHO, no one, not ever Cody, the team administrator, who
> > is held accountable for or takes responsibility for whether the
> > marketing team is meeting the marketing needs of the Ubuntu
> > community.
> >
> > That is what I am working on in discussions with some other people
> > on this team who have expressed interest in team leadership - a
> > proposal for a group of marketers who will be responsible for and
> > held accountable for achieving the marketing goal - Fixing Bug #1 -
> > of the Ubuntu community. And, IMHO, that is what the entire Ubuntu
> > community is waiting for us to do - why they are so interested in
> > this discussion.
> >
> > Given that no one, as far as I can tell, has much of a marketing
> > success track record, operative word being marketing, selecting this
> > committee by meritocracy is not possible. An election is an option
> > but that takes time. and at this point in the history of this team,
> > I am not sure that the results of such an election would be the
> > best for meeting the needs of the Ubuntu community.
> >
> > My opinion on this, and these are the people, with one exception, I
> > have tried to get together are the people on this list who have
> > publicly expressed a desire and willingness to be responsible, and
> > hopefully - although we have not yet discussed this - be held
> > accountable for meeting the marketing goal of the Ubuntu community.
> > And who either have prior MARKETING experience or have exhibited
> > that they understand what marketing is all about. Sorry, people,
> > but, IMHO, most of you have a very limited understanding of
> > marketing and how it works. That's not a criticism but a statement
> > of fact based on my observations of what is being said and done
> > here.
> >
> > I am not familiar with all the in and outs, both technical and
> > political, of how things get done on the Ubuntu community. But I do
> > know marketing, having done it in one form or another since I was a
> > kid with a paper route. And, honestly, knowing marketing should be
> > the ONLY real criteria for leadership on this team. Anything else
> > can be delegated to people with the appropriate technical skills or
> > political savvy.
> >
> > Finally, if the FOSS model that seems to be invoking as something
> > sacrosanct does not work for this team, then let's find one that
> > does work. But, IMO. the REAL FOSS model does work with some
> > modification, perhaps, because of the particular place this team is
> > at at this particular time. Reserve judgment until you actually
> > have something to judge and stop nitpicking because we are perhaps
> > going against what everyone else is supposedly doing.
> >
> > - --
> > Peace!
> >
> > John
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