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How can xenforo compete against the big companies like vBulletin and IPB?

Discussion in 'XenForo Pre-Sales Questions' started by Princeton, Sep 3, 2010.

  1. Princeton

    Princeton Well-Known Member

    competition breeds excellence

    - vbulletin will be forced to create a better product
    - xenforo will be forced to create a better product

    In the end, we all win.

    vbulletin does have the upper hand
    • a trusted brand; even with the current problems people still trust the name
    • member base is huge - most don't even know about the problems
    • resources
    xenforo greatest advantage is that it has no restrictions. It can build from the ground up with features that work.

    The question we should be asking...
    How can xenforo compete against the big companies like vBulletin and IPB?

    1)__ Start building your Brand - the biggest asset it has is the staff. But this can only take you so far...
    • make it easy for people to spread the word - send-to-friend email?
    • offer a newsletter? Why force people to register / subscribe to forum?
    • banners to share on sites, etc ... it will help others become aware of the brand
    Remember: It's not about xenforo - the great software. It's about getting people to trust xenforo - the company - the brand.

    2)__ Build for those who can spread the word - developers, programmers, web designers, etc. Start working on a marketplace, on new policies, etc ... even if it's just on paper or just taking input from members. It's important to show them how serious you are in working with them.

    3)__ Ensure that a smooth upgrade is possible. (eg. SEO ) Changing features and interface is one thing but making it difficult for people to transition from one software to another because of indexed pages, URL rewrites, etc can be detrimental to growth. (Not everyone will have the knowledge to do this on their own.)

    4)__ Get many eyes on the software. This is possible by targeting large sites. If you can convert large sites you will...
    • expose the brand to many people.
    • increase word-of-mouth.

    (for education purposes only ... the same can apply to other endeavors)
  2. Booth

    Booth Well-Known Member

    In my opinion, I think the forum software is as good as VB and IPB3 already even at Alpha 4. I'm not a coder so I'm just going off the experience as an end user.

    So for me, the thing that currently IPB3 has over Xenforo is add-on products like IP.Content, Blogs and Gallery which allow you to set up an entire site - not just a forum. The integration of IP.Content with the main forum is amazing, allowing any posts made to an article to automatically show in the forum thread as well - and vice versa. This is vital for one of my sites.
    ked38 likes this.
  3. The Geek

    The Geek Active Member

    ... by focusing on quality and innovation.

    "Big company" isn't always an advantage. Often it can be a hindrance and a disadvantage if the ownership doesn't invest in innovation and its people. IB are sitting ducks - given time my grandmother would pose a threat to their market share.
    Green Cat, Matt Mecham, goyo and 2 others like this.
  4. Omri.L

    Omri.L Active Member

    I believe that the software's quality is what matters in the end of the run.
    good software would gain it's good name...
    erich37 and sniper756 like this.
  5. Princeton

    Princeton Well-Known Member

    quality and innovation can only get you so far...
    there needs to be a relationship - trust - before y0u make a purchase

    most of us are here because we know Kier and Mike - we trust them
    How many of us would be here if it wasn't created by a familiar person?
  6. Princeton

    Princeton Well-Known Member

    most definitely ... and they are working on it

    the goal is to convert as many people in as little time as possible ... the longer it takes to develop a brand, the software, etc ... the more likely the "advantage" disappears
  7. DSF

    DSF Well-Known Member

    A few minutes ago my wife sad:

    IB is faceless for me
    xF has a face and I see sympathic eyes with a smile
  8. Princeton

    Princeton Well-Known Member

    the other day my wife asked me...

    Who is Kier?

    Dream likes this.
  9. DSF

    DSF Well-Known Member

    I think, our wifes see it's with other eyes :D
    sniper756 likes this.
  10. Shamil

    Shamil Well-Known Member

    As long as she doesn't think there's something going on between you two...:)
  11. Kim

    Kim Well-Known Member

    I am pretty sure that Kier, Mike and Ashley would not have launched into this without doing a pretty thorough business plan ;)

    Not to take away from anything you have said, but they do have considerable experience in the areas you mentioned, it might be perceived as maybe a bit condescending to assume they don't know the things you have posted.

    And really, haven't we all had enough of the assumption that in order to succeed, xenforo must do it on the back of anyone else's failure.

    Been Told likes this.
  12. Princeton

    Princeton Well-Known Member

    people learn by examples
    we can use xenforo as an example on how we can succeed or not

    I believe I posted this in the general discussion forum...
    it's open for discussion ... not to bash, not to belittle, nor to offend
    it's meant as an educational piece

  13. Forsaken

    Forsaken Well-Known Member

    I think she means that XenForo doesn't really need vBulletin to fail, because it'll clearly speak for itself.

    I care very little about IPB/vBulletin, I really don't see much point in continued topics on it either. XenForo will succeed by its own merits, with or without the failure or mistakes of other platforms. 
    GodForum.com and Princeton like this.
  14. Princeton

    Princeton Well-Known Member

    which is why I wanted to discuss something more proactive (positive)

    anything we discuss here can be utilized elsewhere

    (I never mentioned failure.)
  15. Kim

    Kim Well-Known Member

    I am sure you did mean it as an educational piece, I am just not sure *who* you are trying to educate :)

    If your opening post is (as it appears to be) addressed to Kier and Mike, then as I said, I find it a little bit condescending to assume that..

    1. They don't already have this knowledge.
    2. They would discuss their business and marketing plans with any of us.

    If I have read it wrong, and you are just generally talking about how to be sucessful in a crowded online market... then why use these examples so explicitly.

    Why is this a question that should bee discussed outside of the xenforo boardroom? Anything said here is pure speculation, you can have no idea of what marketing plans are in place.

    We can all do our bit to help promote xenforo where we can, but trying to write thier marketing plan seems as I said, a little condescending to me.

    As for the last comment... it is a reference to what I perceive as your inference that in order to be successful, xenforo is reliant on gaining customers at vBulletin's or IPB expense. I believe you are wrong. xenforo is not reliant on the failure of vBulletin, nor on stealing customers from IPB.. they will forge their own path. They will have their own market very quickly.

    This has been discussed many times.

    By all means go ahead and discuss this, I will bow out of the topic and leave you in peace. :)
  16. Poltergeist

    Poltergeist Active Member

    How did many people find vB and IPB? By going to a forum and then seeing the name/link at the bottom. Once xenForo is release and it's being used the same thing is going to happen. People will visit the site(s) and either like/dislike how the software works. If they like it and want to setup a new a site or change over an existing site they will follow a link/do a search and purchase the software.

    Also the word can (and probably will be) spread by end users. Happens all the time; someone from another site comes and says "on this other site I'm on they can do....". While there are people that will not change just because its not product XXX (think Chevy vs. Ford) many will because they want something new/different/better or for other reasons.
    Moses, ked38 and Princeton like this.
  17. Princeton

    Princeton Well-Known Member

    yes, I agree ... that's exactly what I mean by
  18. Forsaken

    Forsaken Well-Known Member

    I was generalizing this posts with others, who often remark or imply XenForo will succeed with the help of vBulletins recent failure/future failure.
    While I can see discussing it might be helpful, I just think its gotten tiresome (There are 18 topics, some which are just questions on conversion, but most on the vBulletin topic itself, and god knows how many posts throughout the forum regarding vBulletin).
    I believe many of us are ready to move beyond vBulletin, and put it behind us, and start over with a new system (At least thats how I feel).
    I think however that it is either to early, and most likely the wrong place (Discussing competitors on XenForo's forum shouldn't really be happening).
    Thats just my feeling on the subject, at least until we can actively engage XenForo into discussions (When they have more time).
    Dragonfly and Princeton like this.
  19. Floris

    Floris Guest

    a trusted brand; even with the current problems people still trust the name


    Yeah, that must be it ..
  20. anotheralias

    anotheralias Well-Known Member

    The funny thing to me is, people keep starting these kinds of threads and the best reply isn't actually a reply - it's the fact that there are loads of people posting here, and loads of replies to these kinds of threads even though there's a similar one about once a day.

    So basically, you answer your own question merely by the fact that you're here, you're posting, and lots of people are replying to you. :D

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