Marketing Team

From Sugar Labs
Revision as of 20:50, 23 June 2016 by Davelab6 (talk | contribs) (add walter's vision)
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Team Home   ·   Join   ·   Contacts   ·   Resources   ·   FAQ   ·   Roadmap   ·   To Do   ·   Meetings

The Sugar Labs Marketing Team exists to spread the good word about Sugar. Sugar provides a simple yet powerful means of engaging young children in the world of learning that is opened up by computing and the Internet. It is the job of the Sugar Labs Marketing Team to promote the benefits of Sugar as widely as possible, and to recruit volunteers to help improve the Sugar experience.

The mission of the Marketing team is to articulate the benefits of Sugar (simplify), to promote these benefits as widely as possible (amplify), and to recruit volunteers to improve the Sugar experience.

Please see our Marketing Team mailing list and its archive.


Sean Daly acted as Marketing Team Coordinator 2008-2016, and when he stepped down on June 23 2016 he offered the following overview:

The 2009 marketing strategy we implemented, based on Sugar on a Stick, was very successful for a time during the netbook boom, but today's environment is very different with tablets, iOS/Android, etc. I had suggested two other ideas since then to the community to facilitate Sugar for teachers: prebuilt VMs for VirtualBox, and preloaded bootable SD cards and branded cases for Raspberry Pi. Since then, Lionel has developed Sugarizer, which in my view deserves serious consideration for marketing initiatives targeting teachers. Dave's efforts to identify a reference platform are also useful.

Samuel suggested a SWOT analysis today - it's an excellent suggestion, the last one we did is now way out of date. Work with Samuel and Dave and Samson on that, it will be helpful even for project recruitment which is their focus. A competitive landscape survey will be complementary to the SWOT. When the community reaches consensus on the project's vision, work on marketing objectives (as opposed to project objectives) can be done. This usually involves a calendar with what actions are planned. If budget is available, you will want metrics - ways to measure spend effectiveness.

Brand values: this is about how Sugar is different from anything else. We always emphasized low-floor, no ceiling; support for minority languages which for-profit companies ignore; the pedagogical pedigree; View Source; collaboration; the Journal.

There is also the PR aspect - targeting journalists, bloggers, and influencers. Communiqués are important for allowing a site visitor to get an idea of the project's direction in just a few minutes. Historically, we put PR on newswires. But these days, social media is very effective. Here's a tip for news coverage: if an initiative will influence large-buyer decisions (education ministries), or represents a real innovation (value proposition for less than what people usually pay), there could be press interest.

The ongoing challenge is overcoming negative image perceptions of OLPC - that the $100 unit price didn't happen, that the project was somehow influenced by Microsoft, even that the project still exists. There is also an identified issue that our slick logo encourages a perception that we are a for-profit startup, not a nonprofit volunteer org. this is why we said "Nonprofit" in many of our PR communiqué titles.

Walter Bender offered this view for future marketing efforts:

What I would like from marketing is some mechanism for highlighting the powerful ideas in Sugar that seem to be lacking in most other systems so that even if a school decides to go with a different product/project, they put pressure on that project to provide tools, not apps, collaboration, transparency, self reflection and group critique, and responsibility on the shoulders of students and teachers to shape their own world.


Deliverables and/or initiatives actively being worked on (with goals and deadlines).

Google Non Profits AdWords

SL is obtaining $10,000 per month AdWords credit that Google offers to nonprofits and will use to run adwords campaigns by these members:

  • Dave Crossland
  • Sean Daly
  • Samson Goddy
  • Walter Bender

The marketing strategy will be to seek new members. Three kinds of members will be sought: (1) software developers, to write python and javascript programs (2) translators, to localize the programs, and (3) technical authors, to increase adoption by specific audiences - parents and schools.

Next Goal: Obtain access to the AdWords account.

Deadline: July 30 2016

Local Labs Survey 2016

Sugar Labs will survey end users to better understand how Sugar is being adopted and adapted. See also

Next Goal: List as many end users as possible.

Deadline: August 30 2016

New Website

In late 2010, four students from the MIT Sloan MarketLab worked on a study of the Sugar Labs website. Their conclusions indicate the importance not only of revamping our website (launched two years ago when fewer visuals were available), but of addressing other aspects, in particular installation and support issues, as well as the technical orientation of our web presence.

Our polished static website as a landing page for Sugar Labs was redone in March-May 2011, see Marketing Team/Website history

Next Goal: Get the SL 2016 Vision, Mission, and Goals approved by SLOBs

Deadline: September 15 2016


See Marketing Team/Events for a table of events we are targeting.

Next Goal: List possible future events.

Deadline: September 30 2016

Press page

Our Press page is here:

Next Goal: Draft the next press release; Develop a Marketing Team/Press contacts list with education-oriented publications.

Deadline: September 30 2016

Sugar stories

How Sugar motivates us: a series of profiles on contributors. Marketing Team/Sugar stories

Next Goal: List contributors active in 2016

Deadline: August 30 2016


To view, download, and contribute to swag designs (stickers, t-shirts, business cards, USB sticks, umbrellas, etc.) and coordinate purchasing swag from suppliers, see Marketing Team/Swag

Next Goal: Design new swag for 2016

Deadline: September 30 2016


Conversations that may one day turn into projects, or may have in the past been projects.

"Audited" Circulation

- Docdtv

While a small user community might discourage adoption of a tool, a large user community can help encourage adoption. And of course, small communities need always precede large ones! You know the old expression: "Eat Sugar! 10**9 flies can't be wrong!" <G>

How do you measure the size of a community? A great way to do that with automata connected to a global communication network is to have them "phone home" now and then. Now, I hope what I am suggesting does not break with any covenent, (implicit or explicit, moral or legal). But would it be so harmful if, say once a day, a Sugar installation would briefly tell Sugar Labs "Hey, I'm alive on a machine today!"

Some might agree to do this, but worry about a slippery slope. Would the future of this humble audit parallel the course of the United States decennial census, growing from a simple enumeration into a ruthless and arrogant demographic strip-search?

Of course, audits could be of great benefit to end-users, especially if they included Activity installation audits. For example, they could evolve into a mechanism for warning the user about a terrible bug that needs patching, or advertising a follow-on tool almost all users adopt upon learning about the new existence of same. (I just now learn that automatic software updates are a new feature of the latest (8.2.0) OLPC software release.) By "factoring" the audit mechanism into a system-wide facility, Activity developers would be spared the need to code such support on their own.

As a courtesy to Sugar users, cooperation in audits should be voluntary. But every user should be told why such an audit can help him and others.

Naturally, all this is limited by the fact that not every last machine on which Sugar will be run will be attached to the Internet.

Video channels

- Docdtv

1. Does a YouTube channel exist? If not, why not? There already is a channel at Dailymotion with 19 videos as we write: YouTube may not use an open source codec, but it is an incredibly popular search engine and affiliate-propagation tool, see:


2. First video would be a 60-second TV-style ad explaining

... what Sugar is (leverage OLPC brand-awareness!)

... that it is free

... what you need to run it

... how you get a copy to install

3. Every time a pitch (q.v. below) is created, a YouTube video record of same is made. The YouTube version can add stills or short video clips to a talking head.


Short, 1-page elevator pitches to sell Sugar to various audiences. Not formalized, but the homepage ( is the best starting point. Marketing Team/Pitches

See Marketing Team/Logo.


Ongoing discussion. See Marketing Team/Name


Several slogan options are available at Marketing Team/Slogan.