Earlier today, ZaReason sent me a group email offering back-to-school specials on Ubuntu-based computers. I receive similar special offers from System 76 from time to time. Going forward, I hope Canonical finds a way to turn up the volume on these third-party Ubuntu system promotions. Here's why. And here's how.

Consider the situation in the traditional PC market. Each Sunday when I open the newspaper, I typically see an insert for the latest Dell PCs and notebooks running Windows 7. When I check my inbox, Lenovo and Hewlett-Packard are sending me more special offers for Windows 7 systems. And of course, most of the ads mention Intel.

In most of the cases, Intel helps to fund those PC advertisements. I wonder:
  • Can Canonical and Ubuntu OEMs secure some co-marketing dollars from Intel?
  • Or can Canonical somehow set up a fund that helps Ubuntu OEMs to promote their respective PC brands?
Companies like ZaReason and System76 deserve applause from Ubuntu community members. In ZaReason's case, the company is offering a "back-to-school special" where, for one week, customers can receive a 5 percent education discount when they use LEARN42 as a discount code. The sale runs until midnight on Sept 1, 2010.

Will more Ubuntu OEMs offer similar promotions? Can Canonical find a way to help organize and promote the promotions? I don't have the answers at my fingertips. But it seems like there's something to be learned from the co-marketing efforts of Intel and Microsoft...