Tag Archives: Microsoft

Really? New Windows Phone 7 commercials rock | Betanews

For months I’ve been saying that marketing, more than technology, would define (or fail to) Windows Phone 7’s launch. … From putting the “P” in personal to smart messaging to simply brilliant advertising, Microsoft has pulled back the curtains on Windows Phone 7 in oh-so right fashion.

…”There must be aggressive aspirational marketing that is at least as good as recent Bing, Internet Explorer and Windows 7 advertising…Microsoft made the right, positive impressions when rebranding Windows Live Search to Bing — thanks to supporting marketing. Windows Mobile is dead. Long live Windows Phone. It’s a new brand that buyers must rightly meet.”

But what really rings — for the visceral appeal and because more people will experience it than the launch marketing material — is the TV advertising. The first commercial embedded above, “Really?”, overdramatizes people obsessed with their cell phones, instead of the real world going on around them. Marketing tagline: “It’s time for a phone to save us from our phones.” Oh yeah?

Microsoft’s marketing isn’t just messaging, there’s a worldview behind it: Your phone isn’t your life. In my post earlier today, I wrote: “Ballmer succinctly stated that Windows Phone 7 is designed so that people can ‘get in, out and back to life.’

So let’s make sure we have this right: there are any number of phones out there that are Just Phones. A smart phone is a different beast, more a computer in a phone costume than the other way around. And Microsoft is clearly not making a phone that is Just a Phone; it’s making a smart phone. And its pitch line for this is that you’ll use it less?

There is only one way this ad campaign makes sense, and that’s if Microsoft has hit an out-of-the-park home run with Windows Phone 7. If it’s so revolutionary that users can get the same things done in dramatically less time, more easily than anything that has come before, then this ad campaign makes sense. Otherwise it’s an argument against their own product and the Kin will soon have company.

Not really — Microsoft doesn’t have another option beyond this, and they’re not known for withdrawing from the battlefield. Once Microsoft has committed to a course of action, they stick with it until they get it right. Back in the day that was Windows before Windows 95. Today I wonder if they have the same will to win, the same sense of destiny that must have kept them going when the only answer they had to the MacOS was Windows 2 (dark days indeed).

I don’t think they need to go to the extremes that Droid is, advertising that their products are the beta version of the Borg, but they should at least claim that you’ll enjoy using their products.

Joe Wilcox (the author) goes on to talk about Millennials, as if they’re the only ones obsessed with their smart phones, and says that the ad campaign tailored to them (obviously not this one) is likely coming later. First, that’s not a given, second, they’re not the only ones who would rather give up their shoes than their phone, and third, these ads set the tone. Having said that phones are a nuisance, Microsoft won’t be able to claim later, “Ha, we were just kidding, it’s really a great heavy-duty phone.” The Millennials (and the rest of us who only vaguely remember how we got by with ordinary phones) won’t be paying attention.


The Dogs of War Infographic — Improved

Maybe improved. It depends on how you look at it. The original is certainly prettier. 

Here’s the article in Wired, by Gizmodo, which tries to show how there is a three-way war starting between Google, Apple, and Microsoft. The graphic that goes along with the article shows over a dozen areas where the three compete, but that’s it; no other information is conveyed. In this graphic, I’ve tried to place each of the items so they represent the current position of the three competitors. So for example, the App Store is closest to Apple because they’ve had the most success with it, but it’s slightly closer to Google than Microsoft because the Android marketplace is doing so well.
For some items, it made no sense to show the battle as being between just these three. For example, if you’re going to talk about eBooks you need to at least include Amazon, as I did below. Likewise for web software, you can’t overlook Adobe’s Flash, especially since it seems Apple is more concerned with that than Silverlight.
None of these are placed numerically. If you have the time to research market share and tell me the iPod/Zune battle should be a few pixels closer to Apple, feel free. But based on the below, this looks like Microsoft is fighting a battle on two fronts, while Apple and Google still have more in common than they do to fight about. Let me know what you think.