How To Make Microsoft Cool Again

After leaving everyone a little confused with the Seinfeld portion of their Crispin Porter + Bogusky helmed ad campaign, Microsoft aired the second installment last night. The new commercial, titled “I’m a PC,” goes straight at Apple’s “Mac vs. PC” ads with a bunch of people (including Pharrell) claiming that they’re PCs, implying that they’re not actually lames like Apple says they are. While these new ads are better than the first bunch, we’re still kinda confused.

We thought these ads were supposed to tell people why Window’s isn’t wack, but they don’t even mention Microsoft or Windows, let alone any of its features. WTF? Who cares if astronauts and animal trainers use it? You’re supposed to be telling the people who want to look cool with a Macbook why they should stick with Microsoft. Now, before we get ahead of ourselves, Microsoft still has the computer game on lock with a damn near 90% market share, but they got problems. Maybe they should focus on them instead of making commercials. We got some suggestions on how they can step up…

Ask anyone under the age of 40 what the best Microsoft product is, and they’ll probably tell you Xbox 360. Besides the dreaded Red Ring of Death, everything about the 360 is dope. It has the best game selection, powerful hardware and, most importantly, the best software available on any console. Playing online with friends on PS3 is straight up painful, while Xbox Live makes it effortless and it looks great. Two things that are seldom said about Windows.

For a company as large and rich as Microsoft, you would think they’d be a beacon of innovation. But most of their consumer products seem to be answers to products that are already successful, like the Zune and Windows Live. Now the Zune and Windows Live aren’t bad products, they’re actually pretty damn good. But it’s hard to stand out when you’re #2. They need to take more risks with their products, bring in some innovators and stop trying to create things to destroy popular products.

Besides their slick, attractive, innovative products, there’s one reason Apple is able to stay on top and his name is Steve Jobs. People only hear or see Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer when he’s pissed off and ranting about one of their competitors. No one wants to buy products from him. Microsoft needs a charismatic figurehead that people actually like to peddle their products to the masses. A good salesman can sell anything, no matter how wack. Just ask Diddy.


When they launched Windows Vista, they launched FOUR different versions! When your average user walks into the computer store, they just want to pick up Windows and keep it moving. If they get confused at all, that’s a problem. And when it comes to Windows, people have been very confused. They need to trim the fat and focus on doing a couple things really well.

Microsoft seems to think that their main problem is one of perception. That people only think Windows sucks because Apple and a lot of the media has said it sucks. And they’re kinda right. If they want to really change people’s perception of Windows and all things Microsoft, they need to let people experience it first hand, on their terms. They need a Microsoft retail store. The only time people experience their products is when they go to Best Buy or some other store where they speak to poorly-trained sales people. If Microsoft had their own store, they’d be able to give people the entire Microsoft experience. Whatever that may be.



Ben Williams said...

I definitely think that opening MS retail stores would increase their productivity and revenue however in the current economic climate it seems unlikely :(.

Great picture of Steve Ballmer!