[Marketing-Public]Mozilla vs Opera

Robert J. Accettura marketing-public at mozilla.org
Wed, 24 Mar 2004 01:21:31 -0500


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Daniel Wang wrote:

>
> Users have three alternatives: newsgroup, 

Most users don't like newsgroups.  Associated with spam and porn.  I 
don't think many general users even know how to use a newsgroup, much 
less use one.  Were talking average joe here.

> MozillaZine forums

Slow, slow, slow.  Not to mention, it's external, feels real unoffical.  
Not really support, but just a community they can use.

> and IRC Chat, 

Again, lets face it average joe isn't familiar with IRC, they have been 
on the net and used to AIM, MSN, etc.  Not the primative IRC.  I don't 
know many friends who have ever used IRC, or even know what it is.  I 
don't think many here know non-geeks who know how to use IRC. 

> and none of them require registration. I don't think we need a new 
> real-time support system. We have limited numbers of people willing to 
> do peer support, and I believe most of them are already contributing. 
> If our existing help forums are not meeting the needs of users, it is 
> because we don't have enough peer helpers. Creating a new support 
> channel may create confusion among both helpers and users as to what 
> channel people should go to.

The goal would be to get people away from the fussy loose network you 
mentioned above, and channeled through 1 appropriate method.  We would 
accomplish more, and with less effort in a real time system.  It would 
also be better for the end user.  Most end users don't like spending 
hours figuring things out. 

Again, this comes back to the focus.  Is Mozilla targeting end users?  
Or just developers?  The above methods are very developer/techy savy.  
But not very user friendly or intuitive for an end user.

> I prefer community support over one-on-one peer support. Nobody is 
> perfect, and if I were helping a user, I'd like others to help me out 
> also and pointing out any mistake I made.

There's no reason why we can't link it to an IRC channel, and allow the 
support reps, and others to see all that's going on, and even consult.  
All phone support is recorded for training/monitoring purposes, so it's 
nothing strange.  Not to mention a growing knowledge base, and great 
bugzilla for research.


Ultimately the user wants the following:
Good product            - We have that
Good documentation  -  Knowledge base will help that
Good support             - We seriously lack here


At this time, to the end user, we are saying, it's "at your own risk", 
and "your on your own, and have a chance at help here:".  That's just 
not great marketing. 

Look at any consumer reports like guide, and support is just as 
important as the product.  Most corporations realize this, and 
successful ones act upon that.  That's why companies like Dell advertise 
about it.  Why CompUSA makes ads about how good it can be with support.

Mozilla already has a good sized community, but it's dispersed and not 
very efficient.  We need to gather it all together, and make it more 
efficient and targeted.  There quite a few who would more than qualify 
for such a role, and already do it.  Problem is end users will never 
have the patience/knowledge/comfort to find them.  I wonder how many 
have parents who are on IRC?  Know what IRC is, or how to use it?  But 
how many can click on a button and type their question and get an answer?

A great recent study is here:
http://slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=04/03/20/1916216&mode=thread&tid=126&tid=133&tid=186&tid=187&tid=95

Proof of concept.  Read some comments while there.  Give it a try too.  
We could get away with less people, and less time.  But most likely 
could do 2-3 spread out through the day. 

Users don't like to wait on hold (email, forum), users don't like to be 
told to "figure it out", and given links to the land of the unknown 
(mozillazine isn't known to the average end user).

As word of mouth grows, people won't always know a developer or 
evangelist to answer every question (I just fielded a few today).  So 
where do they go?  Back to IE.

It's the same reason why Walmart hires "greeters" (those people when you 
walk in the door imediately greet you and offer to help you or direct 
you if you need help.  Those inviduals are responsible for a signifigant 
part of their sales.  It makes customers feel it's easy to get help when 
needed.

-- 
Robert J. Accettura
robert@accettura.com


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