Wix’s negative publicity campaign falls flat with WordPress developers and professionals – WordPress Tavern
Wix launched a negative publicity campaign targeting WordPress, following a bizarre marketing stunt where the company shipped Bose headphones to influential members of the WordPress community. Recipients were puzzled, as it seemed the company was wasting its marketing budget on people who weren’t likely to be influenced by the campaign. Wix seems oblivious to the negative responses to his headphone marketing ploy.
The subsequent advertisements of this new “You Deserve Better” campaign are significantly more negative than the start the video sent to the recipients of the headphones, packed with tasteless and tired patterns.
Wix representative Maya Gril said the campaign was part of “the company’s initiative to connect with an audience that doesn’t think or know Wix applies to their needs.”
When asked what message they intended to send with the videos, Gril compared using WordPress to a bad relationship.
“The campaign cleverly shows that WordPress users don’t need to be stuck in a bad relationship with their platform and that they should consider the alternative that allows them to focus on their real work.” said Gril. “Each campaign video revolves around user weaknesses, which also highlight Wix’s strengths.”
Morten Rand-Hendriksen, who received a pair of headphones, called the campaign “nuclear troll marketing. Instead of emphasizing the innovative new features of the Wix platform, the ads present themselves as short, petulant stories with no clear purpose.
“I guess they’re trying to get us to answer?” WordPress co-founder Matt Mullenweg tweeted in response to the campaign discussion. “I agree that it is scary and deceptive to masquerade as ‘WordPress’ in this way.
“I can’t say if trying to get a cease and desist letter is part of their strategy to try to get the press up. Unethical and sticky behavior of an unethical and sticky company. Good reminder: I really appreciate the integrity, principles and ethics of the companies in the WordPress ecosystem. “
Wix’s new video ads seem more aimed at professional developers with credentials that are likely outside of regular users’ experience with the software. The company may not have been successful in attracting professionals in the past, which could explain why it chose to send headphones for thousands of dollars to influential WordPress users in this demographic.
In 2019, Wix began shifting its marketing budget away from TV ads and added products targeting agencies, developers, and designers. The company spent $ 55 million on marketing in the first quarter of 2019, according to reports shared with Digiday. Wix became more active on LinkedIn and Twitter in search of professionals who would attract more customers to its platform.
“We want to make it clear that we have everything a professional needs”, Maya Gril said. “Our product is mature and constantly evolving. We’re expanding our target audience, and we want all new, existing and potential users to know that Wix is the ultimate web creation platform to help them create, manage, and grow online. “
Unfortunately, Wix lacks a very important feature to meet “business needs”: data portability. When asked what he thought of the campaign, Mullenweg added that Wix is the only CMS in the world that doesn’t allow export – even Facebook does. the Wix Support Center states: Yesour Wix site and all of its content is hosted exclusively on Wix servers, and cannot be exported elsewhere.
Having content that is locked and that cannot be easily exported to other platforms or hosts does not appeal to professionals. No amount of extravagant spending on marketing stunts will convince developers to bring their customers to a proprietary CMS that also locks down your content.
This is why their marketing does not please the group of people who received the headphones. Many of them build WordPress as longtime contributors or run WordPress product businesses.
Wix fundamentally understands why people use WordPress and what keeps them going. This is for reasons that cannot be found in their over-simplified list of differentiators found in new video ads. Desperate marketing tactics, which are more focused on developers and power users, only serve to reinforce the platform’s underdog status and lack of market awareness.