How Microsoft Can Win The PC/Mac Campaign

For the last few months, er years, Microsoft has been getting their assets handed to them as Apple tears into their brand with the “PC vs Mac” clever ads.

Microsoft has launched a new campaign with at least two phases, the first one showing Seinfeld and Gates acting as “normal guys” at the mall, at home, on the road. Most tech heads didn’t get it, but for the mainstream everybodies, it may have resonated. The ads may have been stalled, the reports contradict.

The second phase, which launched last night, extends the “everybody is a PC” theme shows some highly structured actors (including the lovely Eva Longoria) showing how they’re a PC.

I figured out that the theme was “everyone is a PC” which is a differentiator from the elite feeling of Mac for young urban 20 something year olds, to the rest of the business and work world.

So what could Microsoft (And their agency Crispin Porter + Bogusky) do to resonate and win this campaign? Allow anyone to publish their photos, videos how they are a PC. They currently have these features in their campaign site, (link via Andrew Finkle) but they are buried a few clicks away, and they even require a fan to submit their age.

What should Microsoft do?

  • Create YouTube Video Templates that have the same video start and end (called bumpers) and have a seperate MP3 track that can be added in the background
  • Create a set of tags “ImaPC” or “PCpride” or “everyonePC” that makes the videos easy to find
  • Next, aggregate the videos onto one page, making them easy for folks to find.
  • Create a voting campaign allowing users to add points to the videos they enjoy the most
  • Use these user created videos in actual TV and web advertising
  • Allow negative videos to be included, and showcase these on the web
  • Elevate these social features right on the campaign page, expand to Facebook, LinkedIn, and where else creators and joiners exist.
  • To take the win, Microsoft should let the people lead, create, and own the campaign, Jerry and Bill can share the spotlight, reframe the campaign on creators. I see there site is hinting at this, and it maybe in their plans, but I’d expect them to crank this user created feature up.

    If you agree that Microsoft should elevate the opportunity for everyone to show how they are a PC, leave comment below, maybe, just maybe, they’re watching.

    Update: Microsoft is putting the ads on Times Square in NYC, a good start –but don’t forget to republish across the web. (link via Paisano)

    Update 2: Dennis McDonald did a “Worldle” analysis (Tag cloud) of all the words used in the following comments. What’s being screamed? “Campaign, people, PC, microsoft, pc, mac”

    • rj

      jeremiah – to your point about user generated content, they did launch the campaign site to support this initiative. check it out.

      http://imapc.lifewithoutwalls.com/

      the question still remains – are you a PC??

      i am a MAC! haha!

      RJ

    • @rj yes and in their desire to speed to market, they missed owning helloimapc.com how they heck do you miss that?

    • Good idea, if anyone from microsoft is listening they should hire you to help with with their social media strategy.

      This could really work if they let people tell their pc stories and provide the “why” behind their choice of being a pc.

    • Greg Werner

      The campaign restates the obvious and the trap of me too which doesn’t work for me; that being

      I AM ORDINARY (PC)

      I hope MS didn’t pay a lot for this “genius”

    • Yalcin

      At least is shows that MS is taking the Mac Attack seriously.

    • Bill

      I think the key here is “do enough people really love your products”. If the answer is “not enough” than your just going to get publicly humiliated. Microsoft needs to focus on their product before publicly giving people a way to contribute negative commentary. Anyone shocked by how few PC folks are listed on that campaign site compared to the size of the Microsoft base? Wasn’t all that effective for me. If people truly love your company that message is probably spreading on it’s own already (Same goes if they hate you).

    • Jen

      hey ive been reading up on all the comments for a presentation i have to make on the I’m a Pc ad campaign in a couple of weeks and i was wondering if someone could help and tell me if there is anywhere i can find out the percentage ratios of pcs to mac???

    • Thought I read recently it was like 9% mac to 91% pc. I wish I had the citation for you. I will see if I can find it and post it for you.

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    • Insightful, thanks for sharing.