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Re: [board-discuss] Discussion about options available with marketing plan draft and timetable


Hi Toki,

On 12/07/2020 22:41, toki wrote:
They might be mistaken, but in as much as Collabora has
stated that they have had zero new customers since 2018

        To correct this mis-apprehension; I spoke about new Desktop product
customers, and Thorsten reported a similar experience at CIB.

it looks a lot like Collabora, and the rest of the
LibreOffice Ecosystem are looking at TDF/LibreOffice to
also do their marketing for them.

        Clearly both Volunteers and Ecosystem are important parts of the
LibreOffice community. If we frame the discussion as them vs. us, we
exacerbate conflict.

        You will be surprised to know that C'bra and CIB have
funded TDF/LibreOffice Marketing / outreach in the past too. Mike can
perhaps report on the results there. It heavily foundered on the
hard-gratis messaging. Everyone wants something for free, then they want
to complain about it =)

        IMHO TDF needs to build space for an ecosystem that
can afford to invest in improving LibreOffice. Or alternatively - it
needs to bin its ecosystem and become the one-company that controls the
brand and does everything: Mozilla style (though I'm far from a fan of
this model, I think it's broadly doomed to failure as I wrote in my
ecosystem paper, and our current efforts at TDF to spend money on
development are are not encouraging).

2) https://bugs.documentfoundation.org/show_bug.cgi?id=76842 exemplifies
the potential client that the support vendor was unable to convert.
8,500 seats would be either £51,000 per month, or per year, assuming the
publicly stated seat prices are accurate.

        This is an example of a spectacularly entitled and unpleasant
government deployment expecting free LTS, rapid response to their
problems, and also not to pay anyone for it.

(One place gave the base price
as being per year. A different place gave the base price as being per
month.) Without having the facts on hand, I'd guess that the issue was
money --- specifically, that the bug-reporter was blind-sided by both
the amounts involved, and was provided with none of the virtues of how &
why paying for support would enable his organisation to be more
effective. (Did the vendor rep point out that their support included
software that enables rolling out new releases on a more timely basis,
including extensions, templates, corporate palettes, and the like?)

        Sure; Tim worked for me back then - he was a professional sales person,
and I'm sure he provided a compelling view of the value-add (vs. what
you can get for free without support).

        Of course - being aggressive in up-stream bug reports to try to get
free support is something that many try. It would be nice if they did not.

        It seems to me that having deployed something for free, saved a
significant amount of money on Microsoft Office licenses - say half a
million per year; it is unhelpful to complain. Problem is - he was
talking to a sysadmin who wants an immediate fix: by which time we're
-far- too late in the cycle; much better to have worked this out in advance.

        There are a number of larger deployments that buy the gratis message,
then they fall over an increasing number of small annoyances that
cumulatively drive them away over the years. It's not a good model for
the project to promote, it results in unhappy users, a bad experience of
the brand, and starves product development.

        Another thing that strikes me is - that I travel on RyanAir, and the
flight is crammed but the service is not particularly dire, and yet the
number of aggressive complaints is high. I fly on a higher cost airline
and I can't tell the difference in service, but there is often much less
grumbling when you pay more. Curious.

        Either way - moving marketing away from gratis towards libre sounds
like a good move to me.

        ATB,

                Michael.

-- 
michael.meeks@collabora.com <><, GM Collabora Productivity
Hangout: mejmeeks@gmail.com, Skype: mmeeks
(M) +44 7795 666 147 - timezone usually UK / Europe

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