Ubuntu’s Golden Ring

I’m been catching up to TedTalks from last year (2009) and last week I got to Simon Sinek’s talk How Great Leaders Inspire Action, in the talk he describes what he calls “The golden ring” which is his representation of how to communicate ideas in order to inspire and influence buying decisions.

So I figured I’d mix up the ideas on my blog and see if they can improve the communication and advertising of Ubuntu and Free and Open Source in general. The results are below but first I’ll quickly go over the ideas for those who skipped the above link and haven’t seen the video yet.

What Simon illustrates is the method in which traditional marketing messages work and he does so with a single circular diagram. Traditionally the messages move from the outside of the circle to the inside, from the What (the product), to the how (awesome features) and then finally sometimes to the Why (why should I care?). This outside in method is described as being logical and rationale by firstly showing what your selling and then explaining why people should buy into it.

The alternative method is illustrated with Apple’s marketing, where they predominantly communicate the opposite way round. First explaining the Why then the How then finally the product it’s self the What. This allows Apple to grab people by their emotive feelings which most of the time will override their logical deliberation and you’ll find people buying Apple products and making up rationale in order to justify their emotive decision making.

So I figured it might be possible to apply the same ideas to Ubuntu right, the problem is the complexity and confusion of the kind of message we want to promote. Apparently Ubuntu and FOSS means lots of different things to different people. So what I’ve done is pick out three different marketing messages and how we should communicate them effectively:

What are your thoughts?