In the past for the SWOT, I believe it was in the best interest of people to provide a small comparative analysis with our ‘competitors’, eventually I got bashed down for using the terminology ‘competitors’. I understand people’s position and many times I get scared by ‘@redhat.com’.
So here’s something to educate people, and of course you can do ‘open marketing’, but before you even approach that concept, think by yourself: Do we have closed door meetings? I mean, I heard a lot about the Board, but I actually don’t see any strategical output from them regarding strategical issues, and this is the first point which can be used to bash down open marketing.
But since I’m not a ‘open marketing’ guy, what does traditional marketing say about this ‘competition’:
Strategical Marketing is mainly support by military theories and in many ways uses the same terminology as the military. A fine example:
“No general would order an army to march without first fully knowing the enemy’s position and intentions. Similarly, before deciding which competitive moves to make, a firm must be aware of the perspective of its competitors” – Hollensen, 2003, pag 168.
Now who are the competitors? Well the competitors of Fedora or Red Hat are not defined neither by Red Hat or Fedora, from the marketing scope of view, the competitors are identified by our users, and a competitor is someone which offers a product or service that can replace partially or completly ours. From this scope, Ubuntu, Slackware, Debian, Arch Linux, openSUSE, etc are competitors. This doesn’t mean that we must fight on a ‘dog-eat-dog’ world, but that doesn’t also justify that we can’t approach them as competitors.
Why do you want a Marketing Team if you try to handicap the very own basic concepts of Marketing?! Sure stick with open marketing… Like an ancient saying: you reap what you sow.
Every day that passes, I start to believe that indeed, there is no need for Marketeers in FOSS Projects. Most of what we say seems trivial, most of what we use on our daily life seems to be redifined by some obscure concept… We even have to drop the way on how we face things, not to mention other issues, like lobby powers inside the community (oh yeah, the /PT incident, thank God the websites/infra-structure team had a wise head).
I’m wondering why Fedora strategically as a Community Distro choosed a ‘Nicher strategy’. This makes no sense to me… Makes all the sense for Commercial Linux, not for Community Linux!
I’m wondering what our real strategy is! I’m sure Marketing can’t help without clearing that out… some say everything happens for a reason, I’m wondering still which one that would be.