Preface: This thread is primarily for Marketing Team members or people who want to join, though we welcome input from anyone. I’m presenting this on Fedora Discussion to promote the idea of a yearly theme in case others find it helpful.
As 2023 comes to a close, I want to send a big thank you to the Marketing Team that has formed this year. @steiner, @jflory7, @itguyeric, and @ekidney - great team members! @bcotton super helpful as we formed up at the start of the year.
Our work has led to:
- The official Fedora Mastodon account becoming the most followed Linux distro account on the Fediverse
- The reactivation of our Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube Community, and Twitter accounts with dedicated social media managers
- A framework for how to set up contributors to maintain social media channels at a level of commitment that works for them
- The relaunch of the Fedora Podcast with a new live stream component
- Growth in our YouTube presence by strategically using the video content we produce at talks
- Improving important announcements with professional looking graphics
- Collaborating with Slimbook, Lenovo, and Framework as we start an intentional initiative in Fedora to cheer-lead and support hardware vendors who choose to ship or support Fedora
I don’t think any of that was something we were aiming toward. Yet it’s awesome to see that our effort is having an impact on Fedora and open source more broadly. When I first started contributing I wasn’t sure how much benefit I could bring from a non-technical perspective. Now I am confident that marketing in open source has so much untapped potential. I’m excited to explore that with you guys!
Targets vs Goals
Why I am I calling these targets and not goals? In my mind, goals are actions that you want to achieve. If you don’t achieve the goal, you failed, and that can sting. Targets are bullseyes that sit far away for you to shoot at. It’s great if you hit them, but primarily you can use them to know where to shoot. You’re job isn’t to hit the target. It’s to shoot at the target. If you do that, you already succeeded.
I’m a fan of this because it relieves the pressure of commitment and failure. In life and in volunteer work, it can be demotivating to set a goal and come short. By focusing on movement and adjusting trend lines more than achieving something specific, you’re off the hook of responsibility. Any further action you take is all positive! At least that’s how it feels, which can be motivating because it feels like extra credit.
Is this semantics? Probably.
Looking forward, I think it would be helpful to identify targets we want to aim for in 2024 and what time frames we want to work in. These are areas that I think make up the core of what the Marketing Team is offering to the rest of the Fedora community, as well as how to round that out. These are just my thoughts to kick off this discussion on what we want to shoot for.
- Build up the independence of existing and new social media channels
- Support the Fedora Podcast and draw more value from that content
- Make the YouTube channel more consistent
- Move the needle with Fedora-friendly vendors through the Fedora Ready Initiative
- Grow relationship directly with content creators and media outlets
- Develop a path for recruiting and mentorship to build trust
- Document how our structure, responsibilities, and processes work
If you noticed, social media, the podcast, the YouTube channel, and the vendor collaborations are the main projects and services we own. Mentoring and documentation are meta targets meant to organize how people from outside of the project learn about us.
The way that I see it, we did a lot of exploring this year and found the specific things we do. Before that wasn’t a given. Now I think it’s time to dive deeper into those competencies, formalize how we work in these spaces, and think about how we keep this going we’re replaced by a new crop of contributors.
Regarding timelines, I think the main ones to keep in mind are the Fedora 40 release, Flock, and the Fedora 41 release. If we have big projects or important announcements that we want to save for something, those are the most important to keep in mind.
Like I said, these are just areas I’ve been thinking about. There’s not really a deadline for this, but I would like to land on a list we feel confident with by the end of winter. What do you think? Let’s put our ideas together!
In my personal life I’ve been a fan of using a yearly theme instead of New Year’s resolutions. You basically set an intention for the year that is intentionally fluffy and vague so that it guides your year without being a goal you can fail and be demotivated by. I like this for the same reasons I like targets instead of goals.
Below is a video of a guy explaining the idea and here is a podcast episode where he and his co-host talk through their yearly themes for 2023 and 2024.
What do we think about having a yearly theme for 2024 for the Marketing Team? It would serve as a gentle reminder of what we’re trying to do this year that keeps us on task while being flexible enough for new interpretations of the theme.
Based on the targets I came up with, below are some ideas for a yearly theme we can adopt. So far Year of Refinement is my favorite because I think it matches the vibe.
- Year of Refinement
- Year of Foundation
- Year of Approachability
- Year of Establishment
- Year of the SOP
- Year of Crystallization
- Year of Structure
- Year of Sculpture
If the idea of a yearly theme seems like too much, it’s not a big deal. I think that targets are what I would like to solidify more than selling you on this idea. But I hope you think it’s helpful!