Microsoft Plays The $$$ Card in New Commercials Attacking Apple

microsoftnotcoolad-tbi No Jerry Seinfeld wackiness here, just a straight up appeal to the consumer’s wallet. Microsoft has (some would say finally) muscled up and taken the wraps off a new campaign that actually draws a distinction between itself and Apple. The commercials began airing during the NCAA playoffs last night and will be seen through the weekend. The commercials focus on the fact that Apple’s computers are usually more expensive than those running the Microsoft OS.

The scenario behind the commercials is a simple one. A consumer is given a wad of cash to go shopping for a computer. He/she is told that they can keep the difference between the cost of the computer and the amount of cash they are given. It’s a common sense appeal in tough economic times that will probably resonate well. Although the ““I’m Just Not Cool Enough to be a Mac Person” line will probably engender lots of back and forth.

We’ve been hearing Steve Ballmer touting this line of attack for several weeks now, and it looks like Microsoft finally has developed enough chutzpah to do some advertising that actually draws a distinction with its competitor from Cupertino. After allowing Apple to define the turf for so long with the clever I’m a Mac/PC commercials, I for one am glad to see Microsoft decide to fight back. Don’t get me wrong, I happily use products from both Microsoft and Apple and don’t play the fan boy game, preferring to use the best of both worlds. But when money is tight for so many, this campaign will probably help Microsoft gain some street cred back. Check out the commercial after the jump.

<a href="http://video.msn.com/?mkt=en-US&amp;playlist=videoByUuids:uuids:0bb6a07c-c829-4562-8375-49e6693810c7&amp;showPlaylist=true&amp;from=msnvideo" target="_new" title="Laptop Hunters $1000 â€" Lauren Gets an HP Pavilion">Video: Laptop Hunters $1000 â€&#8221; Lauren Gets an HP Pavilion</a>

Via the Wall Street Journal

12 Comments

  1. Sumocat

    03/27/2009 at 6:56 am

    Great. As if we Tablet PC enthusiasts didn’t get the cost argument thrown in our faces enough, now Microsoft is promoting cost-savings. Thanks.

    Reply

  2. Clayton

    03/27/2009 at 7:00 am

    Good for Microsoft!

    Reply

  3. Steppenwolf

    03/27/2009 at 7:56 am

    I second Sumocat :)

    And, being a lifetime Microsoft loyal customer, but also a honest person, I think that usability means much more than 300-400$. I don’t like the money argument as the main one, it’s way too simple.

    Reply

  4. Warner Crocker

    03/27/2009 at 8:02 am

    Of course when you’re trying to define yourself in advertising, simple does work best. ;)

    Reply

  5. Andrew Napier

    03/27/2009 at 8:29 am

    I kinda liked the part where Lauren said “I’m not cool enough to be a Mac person”.

    Reply

  6. Steppenwolf

    03/27/2009 at 8:31 am

    That’s absolutely right, Warner. One of my best friends is a marketing uni teacher and a brilliant consultant, and she always says that I’m too far away from the classic customer in order to understand his/her point of view. Should I spend 1k on a product, I would search through the internet, subscribe to forums and partecipate to discussions to be sure of what solution suits better my needs. I’m sure you understand my geekiness, because we ALL are like this on this matter, but it’s also true that we are different from the mass (I didn’t say better – well actually I thought it).

    Reply

  7. Clayton

    03/27/2009 at 10:41 am

    Who says that’s geeky, Steppenwolf? ;) That’s smart research!

    Reply

  8. Xavier

    03/27/2009 at 12:20 pm

    I agree with Warner. I too use both Macs and PCs. Glad to see Microsoft addressing pricing.

    Price is the most important factor in computer choice right now and Apple MacBooks are just too expensive for many people to even consider in this economy.

    A 17″ MacBook Pro starts at $2,799. It’s an excellent machine, but overkill for most users.

    I don’t recommend Macs for people who are watching their wallets in this economy.

    Reply

  9. Sumocat

    03/27/2009 at 12:53 pm

    Xavier: You’re using the 17″ Macbook Pro as your example? Really? It’s a “Pro.” That it’s not for most users is implicit in the name. No one would recommend that to most users any more than they would a high-end Alienware machine or HP HDX.

    That said, either of those options are much cheaper than the 17″ MBP with comparable specs, though neither come close to matching the weight, particularly if you try to match the battery life with spare or extended batteries. Premium is too steep for me, but I can’t argue against the sweetness of 7-8 hour battery life in a 17″ notebook at just 6.6 lbs.

    Reply

  10. Xavier

    03/27/2009 at 2:22 pm

    @Sumocat Thanks for your comment. I’m using the 17″ MBP as the example here because the Microsoft ad showed her going into an Apple store and ‘hunting’ for a 17-inch notebook.

    I agree with you that the 17″ MacBook Pro is a slick notebook and relatively lightweight notebook, but as you point out there are systems with similar specs for half the price.

    re: ‘No one would recommend’ a MBP to most users. I’ve witnessed Apple salespeople up-selling customers (including senior citizens) from a sub-$1,300 MacBook to a $2500+ MBP when they complained that the 13.3″ display was too small.I also know several home users that bought 15″ MBPs for $2000+, when all they really want to do is browse the web, email and edit photos.

    I’m a PC/Mac user and really enjoy using both Windows and OSX, but like Warner – I’m not a fan boy.

    Reply

  11. Sumocat

    03/27/2009 at 5:53 pm

    Oh c’mon, you’re counting salespeople in that? Again, purpose is implicit in the title.

    Reply

  12. Sara Fauzia

    03/30/2009 at 4:25 pm

    I’m surprised no one mentioned Linux! By Microsoft’s argument, Linux is better than Microsoft; a computer with Linux pre-installed is bound to be cheaper than the equivalent with Microsoft :). So I don’t entirely respect their reasoning.

    Reply

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