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The first month of Femfox: reactions, actions and results

[Ce billet est également disponible en français]

1/ Reactions:

During this first month of existence, a debate concerning Femfox has been launched on several blogs in France and, to a lower extent, in some other countries. It can be summarized as follows:

Although a lot of people appreciate the promotion presented by Femfox, some were more critical. These last are mostly persons involved in the open/free software community. In their opinion, our action to promote Firefox is not convincing as it uses some very common cliché present in other advertisement campaigns; this being maybe inappropriate or awkward in order to promote open/free software.

The rules of the open software community are not clearly defined, notably in term of marketing communication and promotion. However, even if the open source community is... open to everyone, some opinions are stronger than others due to the people they come from. When several personalities involved in this community give us the advice to be more creative and to avoid these cliché, we have to hear them, to draw some conclusions and to act in response.

Episodes 1 to 4 have been designed as parodies (with no link to Firefox) of advertisements for non-technological products (prêt-à-porter, lingerie or cosmetics). This derisive 'message' has not been understood or perceived, certainly because it was too ambiguous. Despite everything, these materials represent a significant amount of work and they are overall appreciated as it can be seen in the comments.

We really believe that we made a lot a progress from Episode 1 to 6. Episodes 5 and 6 were prepared with much more reflection and we feel that the first 4 Episodes were less creative/effective in term of promotion (comments agree with this too).

All these facts put together justify our choice to let these 4 first Episodes available to visitors. However, we chose to put these pictures in a section separated from the main download page. We also mention that these pictures no more fully match the way next Episodes will be designed.

2/ Actions:

Open source community must be creative and innovative. So we must too. Here is how we plan to develop our promotion of Firefox. We wish now to focus on Firefox features without being more technical though (see Episodes 5, 6 and next to come). The promotion will keep its glamorous (and sometimes humorous) tone and will try to deliver less ambiguous messages.
Femfox will be less "simply" oriented on the female body (to avoid the cliché), more creative (we hope so) and more focused on features - as an example, see the difference between episodes 2 and 5/6.

3/ Results:

Femfox was launched 5 week ago and it is a great success as it can be seen with the statistics from this period:

Total Page Views: 2,524,743 - Average Page Views per Day: 68,236 - Total Visitors: 150,586 from 159 countries - Average Visitors per Day: 4,069 - Total Unique IPs: 107,593 - Total Bandwidth: 38 Gb - Average Bandwidth per Day: 1.03 Gb - Total Episodes Views: 55,076. Moreover 60 members have posted a total of 317 messages in the Femfox forum.

We would want to warmly thank all the people that have contributed to this success by linking us on their sites, blogs and forums or by spreading the word about Femfox. At this time we have around 100 direct referring personal websites/blogs. Several early fans (mainly coming from put a lot of time and passion to give us their advices, to help us or to promote the site. One more time we would want to show gratitude to them.

Finally, the last and most important result for us: the only aim of Femfox is to modestly promote Firefox by a personal and non official initiative.
And, on this particular point, we are very pleased to know that we have counted 1228 downloads from our website to date (knowing that 48.5% of our visitors already use Firefox).

4/ Coming next:

During March, we plan to release Episode 7 as well as the very first version of the Femfox Screensaver.
Moreover, new Episodes will be now available both in English and French. Episodes 5 and 6 are presented in these two languages.
We are also thinking about new features/events for Femfox that could be presented during the next 3 or 4 months. We will keep you informed as soon as we have more precise idea of these projects.

Back   10.03.2006.

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