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Posts Tagged ‘marketing’
April 8th, 2011

Communicating with clear categories in avast! WebRep

avast! WebRep combines antivirus software with website ratings from millions of users in the global avast! community – providing users of avast! 6.0 with a community-sourced guide to the safety and/or content of websites. avast! users can thus know – before clicking a link – what to expect in terms of product or service quality, customer service levels, or website safety and reliability. Ratings results are “traffic-light” simple:  green = GO… orange = CAUTION… red = STOP!

But we’ve talked about that before. This time, let’s take a look at the website categories… Read more…

March 7th, 2011

150 millionth avast! user registered on Friday!

Friday, March 4, 2011, someone installed avast! Free Antivirus and pushed the “Register” button at JUST the right time:  to be the 150 millionth registered user! Read more…

January 24th, 2011

Demystifying ‘standard’ IT security terms – how would YOU do it?

"The Thinker" (Rodin) My boss, Marketing Director Milos Korenko, made a blog post here a few days ago in which he mentioned/linked to an honor received by a book of poetry I wrote. He also said that my job at AVAST is pretty much “crafting IT-terms into words and texts that normal people would understand.” I would argue that my job is not quite so simple as that ;-) but I’ll explain Milos’s point.

I’ve been a regular computer user since buying my first PC, an HP desktop, in 1997. It ran Windows 95, and I think it had McAffee antivirus (the engine for which was provided by avast!). I sacrificed sleep on many nights, to try to learn a new operating system that was NOTHING like the Commodore 64 (complete with cassette-tape drive) that I had taken my only real computer classes on 10 years prior. In 2002, I bought a Gateway desktop with Windows XP… that’s right, from Windows 95 to Windows XP.

I’m probably an average computer user. I use my laptop at home for social (and other) networking, Skype calls, research, and word processing, primarily. My job all day is on a desktop PC, from which I handle various writing assignments, web research, project tasks, and seemingly endless forms of communication.

Aside from what I use PCs for daily, however, I really don’t know much about them – which is, in many ways, good for my work. Read more…

January 7th, 2011

Customer feedback (positive + ‘negative’ = positive)

Customer feedback, with other companies and industries I’ve worked in, had a tendency toward primarily negativity. There was very little balance – complaints greatly outweighed any occasional positive stories we would receive. In each case we would justify the imbalance with generalizations that “people love to complain” or “nobody has time to give positive feedback”… or the cynical “they probably just want a credit” (and, at least in American culture, the last one is unfortunately often the case, as it has become a norm there to take advantage of the adage “the customer is always right” to secure discounts, freebies, etc. – I know, because I myself have emailed restaurants after a bad experience, knowing I would likely receive a voucher along with the standard apology) .

Something is different, however, at AVAST. Read more…

September 21st, 2010

Behind the scenes (science & alchemy)

Greetings from Central Europe. I’ll not bother to say much about myself (Google is there for any who have a deeper interest), but I’ll tell you that, in summer of 2010, I joined AVAST Software as Web Copywriter – a position that, like many others here, was much needed, as the company has grown, along with its user base, at an almost unbelievable (exponential – about 1 employee per 1 million users) rate in recent years.

The Wizards' Tower

I learned a few things very quickly at AVAST:

  1. Being a web-based company, every action requires simultaneous macro & micro perspectives as to how it will affect (or be affected by) a global community. Localization adds, of course, many more layers of potential difficulties, and our multinational team is priceless as to the insights that its individuals provide.
  2. What applies in terms of marketing & PR (my department) often calls for an extremely different approach than what applies to, for example, e-Commerce, programming, database architecture, QA, sales, support, etc., which are every bit as integral (if not more so) to the quality of the products we offer.
  3. Combined, the two elements above requires (and in our fortunate case are performed by) the top industry talent available. I am amazed to discover, within my first few months at AVAST, that nearly every person I’ve worked on any type of project with has been well above average in terms of work ethic, capabilities, and creativity – characteristics that were not always exactly plentiful at Fortune 100 companies I’ve been involved with in the past.

In a 1,000-year-old city – that, annually, more than 6 million tourists visit to experience the mystical pulse of human history – I suppose avast! was bound to happen. Its founders, two floors above me in the wizards’ tower, continue to surge energy through the walls and floors, to all levels (one can see/hear/feel it at the coffee machines). In modern times, when little Merlins and Gandalfs and even Harry Potters grow up… they make things like avast!