Attention / Interest / Desire / Action,, or why marketing 'the Fedora project' is a bad idea.

Mike MacCana mikem at
Fri Jun 24 09:30:25 UTC 2005

On Wed, 2005-06-22 at 23:30 -0400, Jeff Spaleta wrote:
> On 6/22/05, Mike MacCana <mikem at> wrote:
> > You think most Linux curious want: (rest of sentence chopped)
> I make no claim as to what 'most' linux curious want. 

I know. That was the start of a question that you answered later on. 

> And i think
> trying to pander to any target group, you run the very real risk of
> misleading them and giving them a colored view of things.  

Er, why? Why does targeting (or 'pandering to') an audience mean you
will likely mislead them more or less than if you scatter your message
to the universe?

And why is it that nobody else, in the entire history or marketing
theory, has ever discovered this?

> Or if you
> misjudge exactly what the target group wants... driving them away.  

Yeah, but if you misjudge what the untargeted universe wants, you'll
drive them away too. Scattering bombing everyone with generic Fedora is
good messages won't achieve anything. Marketing 101.

> I do not want to see people walk into this community with expectations
> that are skewed by aggressive focused marketing.  I want people to
> have a fair impression as to what to expect.

The fairness of their impression has nothing to do with whether the
message is targeted towards them. It has to do with us being honest with
users, something which I share your views about.

> I'd rather avoid the whole issue of trying to highlight the
> good features.  

Then you'd rather avoid marketing. 

> But If you must ask the very qualitative question
> "what is good"  then i want to see the question "what is bad" being
> answered at the same time.  

Damn straight.

> I am very wary of evangelizing fedora as a
> distribution for ANY target group to flock to.  

The Linux curious will try a Linux distro. Because they want to.

Chances are, with Gentoo's screaming 'watching text scroll by makes me a
Linux expert' zealots and Debian's 'troll angrily and loudly on every
Fedora story on Slashdot' approach, it'll be either Debian or Gentoo.

Do you think that technically minded user, who's nevertheless used to
Windows, would be happier with a distro that can probe his monitor, or
one that'll ask him for 'modelines', when he doesn't know what they are?

> I
> would MUCH rather have a user read about fedora and feel its not the
> right solution for them

Totally agreed about being honest. Look at say, Codeweavers Crossover
marketing. Their honesty about what Crossover can and can't do actually
makes them look better.

> I personally think getting a livecd out into the hands of potential
> users is the best way forward to generate "attention interest and
> desire"  

Yep, but they need to be interested enough to get the CD.

> I think the website should focus on how to take "action".

Yeah you could call! Let them know what the CD (and
the real distro) can do, and what it can't as well.

>   A
> website that tries to inspire interest.. 

It's in order. I.e., the website gets the user attention to make them
try out the CD.


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