sep 16

I'm a PC

Anyone read that Fast Company cover story a few months about about how Crispin Porter + Bogusky were going to save Microsoft? It didn't occur to me until just now, but the realization of that has been the Seinfeld / Gates ads. If I had some extra time, I'd write about these commercials as an attempt to do some creative class warfare with Apple's "I'm a PC" campaign. Update #1: Microsoft is dropping Seinfeld from the next ads. Update #2: Pic of "PC Guy" for new campaign. Update #3: Techcrunch posts the new ads.


The whole deal is that the PC is now supposed to be a computer for the everyman, where as an Apple is for teenagers and hipsters.
People say the commercials are about nothing, but they aren't. It's supposed to be that these men are everyday people, whereas the Mac folks look glamorous.
Or something.

posted by Ironic at 9:08 PM on September 16, 2008

Except that the two people in question are the second richest man on the planet and Jerry Seinfeld. At least the Apple guys arent superrich (or weren't before the ads and Die Hard 4)

I think they're going for the absurdist "Huh?" angle, where the ads are only marginally about the product, and lead to people speculating on what the point is. Which I guess we're doing.

Now if only they could work Palin into it...

posted by Jeremy Meyers at 7:52 AM on September 17, 2008

Ironic, you've got it. Hodgman is funny. He actually helps sell PCs with his role in the Mac commercials. (Especially to the people who wouldn't buy anything based on an endorsement from a dude like Justin Long) I think the Microsoft campaign is a mistake not because it is terrible (it isn't TOO bad), but because they should have instead done anything possible to get Hodgman to break his Apple contract and pitch for them.

posted by Brian Van at 8:01 AM on September 17, 2008

The commercials have made me adore Bill Gates, but I'm not sure if that's a good thing or what. Are they trying to distance from or align him with the brand? If the latter, it makes me like MSFT more ... although I still won't buy any of their stuff.

posted by katiebakes at 11:33 AM on September 17, 2008

It is to make him AND Jerry Seinfeld become the face of the brand. Gates has always been the face (look at every CES)of MSFT.
The absurdist angle does make sense, but it's also to make the men appear like us, which means that a giant corporation which everyone dislikes is actually a people loving place. Seinfeld even says, "Why are we trying to be like them?"

posted by Ironic at 5:27 PM on September 17, 2008

I had totally forgotten about that article -- thanks for the reminder. Unless this is merely the first stage in some sort of mind-bogglingly long-range plan predicated primarily on making up for initial marketing missteps, consider me positively underwhelmed.

posted by sjb at 12:11 PM on September 18, 2008

This almost vindicates the idea of the Everyman.
Celebrities and people alike stand together and say they are PC people. It even ends with Chopra saying we are human beings (not doing) personally connected (PC).
Even takes a shot at the MAC ads.

posted by Ironic at 8:49 PM on September 19, 2008

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