June – September 2010
It’s a beautiful sunny day at the Vancouver Farmer’s Market, (R) and I are trying to figure out should we put the banner up on the umbrella or should it be on the front of the table?
We throw up our 3 panel poster board – handcrafted by me 🙂 – along with flyers and info cards. The cow bell rings and the market it now open for business!
A few market shoppers walk by, slowly, then stand a ‘safe’ distance away. The person’s face contorts with confusion and that’s our cure to say: Good Morning! Do you have any questions?
Cautiously, the person comes a few steps closer still looking bewilder and says: Umm… yes, what is this exactly?
And the conversation begins!
Why? Why are we going on the street with a display and telling people about the Ubuntu Vancouver LoCo (UVLC)? Why is there no laptop and tech gear sitting in the photo? In fact how come the poster board has so little information about the OS?
Well, what is the marketing goal? To show how flashy the system is? To show you how many different things you can do? That might be the answer if UVLC’s was a tech only group.
But this is not UVLC’s philosophy – it’s about face-to-face community and bringing awareness to Freedom of choice so that your computer can do what you want it to do.
Now that’s an interesting contradiction a computer group that’s all about the face to face interactions. I won’t get into the background of UVLC, as its topic all to it’s own, but you can check it out at Ubuntu Vancouver LoCo.
And still the question is why do we need to hit the streets and inform people about Ubuntu? Well, despite the perception of the online community awareness is low.
And this is our challenge. How do we bring awareness to people who don’t know they are locked down?
A: Explaining freedom, community and software is harder then it looks. The general perception is that the 3 ideas can not mix.
B: If you don’t know or don’t realize that you are not in control of your computer how do we start to change that thinking?
C: Our marketing poster 1.0 was a great start but I’m sure the next one will be even better – looking for ideas and suggestions to improve
D: Results of the marketing campaign in a nutshell is that the majority of the public has no idea what Ubuntu or FLOSS software is
E: Upon a quick search of the web, we found 3 other marketing tables. I don’t want this. I know we can do a much better job.