Thursday, September 4, 2008

Old dogs new tricks

You have the biggest software company in the world. You’re riding the wave of the most important communication revolution, since Gutenberg pinched movable type from the Chinese. Where do you advertise the brand that has become synonymous with the digital revolution?

On TV of course!

Microsoft plans to launch a campaign to counter the ‘I’m a Mac and I’m a PC” ads that have been so successful for Apple Mac (See AdNotes, June 2007).

The Microsoft work is ALSO aimed at smothering the general attitude that it’s new Vista operating system is riddled with bugs and other problems.

Who have they chosen to be the main spruiker?

Another surprise.

None other than Jerry Seinfeld. As you know, if you’ve been paying attention, I believe that Seinfeld is a genuine comic genius (See AdNotes, Jan 2007). And while his TV series was the biggest thing on TV, that WAS in the nineties! The naughties are nearly over for Pete’s sake!

None the less, Gerry’s cut of the $US300 million marketing campaign is $US10 million. Now that’s a talent fee. I wonder if he gets annual rollovers as well.

The creative agency behind the idea is Miami-based Crispin Porter + Bogusky, possibly the coolest creative shop in the world today.

The slogan is (or might be, no one is sure yet) "Windows, Not Walls" and is all about connecting and communicating with others without barriers.

Due for roll-out on September 4, I for one can’t wait to see how works.

There is some chatter that Jerry and Bill Gates will be ‘acting’ together. That should be interesting. Gerry has never pretended to be anything other than a stand up guy. And I’ve heard that Bill is a pretty stiff with scripted lines and planned banter.

The world's biggest computer software company, an 83 year old medium, and a 54-year-old comic who hasn’t been on air since 1998!

That's creativity.

Adman and author Harry Beckwith claims that good advertising IS IT'S OWN PR. In this case I think he's right. Look, I'm writing about a campaign I haven't even seen yet.

Most of us will never have a budget that could include Jerry Seinfeld. But we can all aim to create a little genuine 'buzz' by being unexpected in our advertising and marketing.

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