The PC vs Mac battle is heating up thanks to new work by CP+B.
“I would have to double my budget, which isn’t feasible,” Lauren says as she drives away from an Apple Store, where 17-inch notebooks start at $2,799. Then she sighs and delivers the ad’s coup de grace: “I’m just not cool enough to be a Mac person.”
This is Lauren. On a strict $1000 budget, she finds her perfect laptop - a speedy HP Pavilion with a big screen and a comfy keyboard. Find your perfect PC at Windows.com. http://microsoft.com/windows/choosepcIn the comments section of the article where I found this on Fortune commenter "Todd" from Vancouver writes. "Laruen’s first choice was a Mac. Her PC was a consolation prize. Great marketing, MS."
I'm not so sure.
You see, I just bought a new laptop for K's dad. He finally decided to take the plunge and get online so he could Skype with Julia. To make a long story short, getting a PC was the only way to go. Like "Lauren" in the MSFT ad, we wanted to get a 17" laptop and getting a Mac was a non-starter. They were price-prohibitive, and we found something with a ton of memory, software and features at a very good price.
In tight times, this kind of communication is bound to play well with the public. Even in Tokyo, H&M and UNIQLO are doing well in the Ginza district, once a luxury-only mecca.
By not competing on price, is Mac missing something? Do they need an entry-level product? Or, is Mac destined to be a niche? Is that a bad thing? Given the high-end positioning of the iPhone, is this where the company wants to be, anyway?
Plus, the fact that the Mac crowd is up in arms means something: It is the first time in ages that I can remember a PC ad getting under the skin of the Apple crowd. CPB is obviously onto something.
All those "I'm a Mac" ads that took swipes at PCs were just fine until MSFT fired back. The idea that "you're too expensive and really not all that cool" has Mac fans pretty pissed off and vocal, and the sound is music to MSFT and CPB's ears.
Sunday, March 29, 2009
Good post, thanks. As an aside, do we really need to compare the two campaigns (Apple's and Microsoft's) and figure out which is more fair / better /accurate? I say no. Here's my argument:
# posted by Bob Caswell : 9:36 PM, March 29, 2009
Thanks for the comment, Bob. Read your post and like it as well.
I've incorporated the comment I left on your post into my blog. Thanks for the additional food-for-thought.
# posted by George Nimeh : 12:33 AM, March 30, 2009
"I'm not cool enough to be a Mac person"
Yet if she owns an mp3 player, the chances are it's an iPod and she uses iTunes for said iPod. Irony.
So really, once again, this ad misses the point, or at least taints it with this schoolyard bullshit.
Mac heads being up in arms is pretty much the de facto response to any Microsoft ad these days isn't it? I personally think they like the attention. ;)
Microsoft have so much more that they could concentrate on in terms of their comms, I find it almost adolescent the way they've tried to respond to Apple's "I'm a Mac" spots.
As for Apple, let's not get away from the fact that the computer market is an ever-decreasing slice of their profit pie, with iPods and iPhones taking in more and more income every quarter. The Mac is the pinnacle of the product portfolio so maybe they want to keep it premium, leaving the other things to be the 'halo' products. So far it's worked, and I'm sure by the end of this year everyone will have a better idea of whether this is a good way to roll or not.
Btw before any Apple fanboys begin their keyboard warrior ways begin flame grilling my kosher ass, I use macs and used to work at Apple.
I am, however, still able to have a sense of perspective when talking about Microsoft and Apple.
# posted by Sam Ismail : 11:11 AM, March 30, 2009
I think they like the attention, too.
And yes, the could try (and have tried) other things than adolescent comms, but let's not forget that these are for the US market, and that shit works really well there. Personally, I'm surprised they haven't got a talking animal involved yet. Look at the Superbowl ads if any doubts remain.
I agree there may be something to the "halo" strategy around the Mac line of products, but that said iPhone is pricey too. They've always been pricey.
The biggest thing about all the work being done by CP+B is that people are talking about, and for MSFT that's a very good thing.
# posted by George Nimeh : 12:53 PM, March 31, 2009