Firefox and Brainstorming

Mozilla has effectively used public participation strategies time and again. A great example was the ‘download movement’ for Firefox 3. They released Firefox 3 on 17th June 2008 and appealed internet users all over the world to download it the same day, in order to set a record for maximum downloads in a single day.

Eventually the results were beyond what they had expected. By the time the download day had ended they had registered 8.2 million downloads, in a single day.

Now they have come up with a new project, impact mozilla.

The introductory text on the project site says that it’s an “…………….open source marketing project“. Here users are asked to submit an innovative idea to devise a marketing strategy to make sure people who download Firefox become regular users.

To ask users to suggest ways to improve products is one thing but to ask them to devise new marketing strategy is an innovative idea. On top of it, they have nicely packaged it in form of a contest. The process somehow resembles Alex Osbourne‘s Brainstorming. While developing Brainstorming technique for creative problem solving, Alex Osbourne suggested that one of the biggest hindrances to idea generation in a team is quick evaluation of an idea. Hence, while applying brainstroming technique teams are strongly advised to abstain from any sort of judgmental evaluation of ideas that have been expressed. Since, in case of “Impact Mozilla”, users suggesting ideas will mostly be working separately from the rest of the user community, the possibility of quick judgment is nil. Firefox 3 is already enjoying very positive reviews and with creative marketing strategy that would emerge from this contest, will definitely increase pressure on the leader internet explorer.


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