In continuing with its new and “clever” line of advertising, Microsoft has temporarily ditched the Gates/Seinfeld ads in favor of reclaiming their image from Apple. As you can see in the image above, it doesn’t seem like they’re really doing themselves a huge favor by taking one of their very own employees and dressing him to resemble John Hodgman, who plays the PC character in Apple’s Mac vs. PC ads. We say all they’re doing is reinforcing or reminding us of that persona: boring, inadequate, and so easy to poke fun at. The character will even reiterate the line, “Hello, I’m a PC…” What’s odd is all the commotion about Seinfeld giving Microsoft a little boost and now they’re taking a detour for these ads which are said to have cameos of celebrities like Eva Longoria and Pharrell Williams. But apparently, the real stars of these ads are going to be everyday folks whose jobs and lives are aided by the use of MS Windows. What do you all think? Does it seem a little over-the-top or is this just what they need to take their image back – the caricature of PC created by Apple? One would be tempted to pat Microsoft condescendingly on the head saying, “Aww, how nice. You’re trying and it’s the effort that counts!”
On Thursday, Microsoft debuted the second advertisement in its recently launched marketing campaign to improve the public perception of Windows Vista. The first advertisement was met with mixed reactions. Some people noted the comedic qualities and loved it while others failed to see the humor and thought it made no sense. This second ad places Gates and Seinfeld in a house with a semi-dysfunctional family (whose family would be normal if you had those two as house guests?). It remains to be seen whether this marketing campaign will achieve it’s goal of rejuvenating the image of Windows but one thing is for sure: It has us talking and thinking about Microsoft again, especially in the wake of some recent Apple announcements. Pretty clever Microsoft, pretty clever.
Note: The version above is the full 4:30 version, not the clipped version that is currently running on TV.