Microsoft’s ‘Laptop Hunters’ ads elevate Apple, echo porn genre

“I got a thoughtful message last week from Jim Neal, a retired advertising and PR guy who owns a little Apple stock and spends a lot of time following its ups and downs,” Phillip Elmer-Dewitt reports for Fortune.

“Lately he’s been trying to make sense of Microsoft’s Laptop Hunters TV ads — the ones where ordinary Americans are given a budget and a wad of cash and set loose in a computer store to buy a PC,” Elmer-Dewitt reports. “Microsoft aired the fifth spot in the series last week, and Apple for the first time answered back with a couple Get A Mac spots. “

“Microsoft’s anti-Apple ads,” Neal writes, “are generally considered a response to Apple increasing market share, something generally believed to be at the expense of Windows market share [and] made possible due to the failure of Vista to deliver.

“All that may be true, but the decision was a poor one. I’m guessing it was made by Steve Ballmer, clearly a more visceral, shoot-from-the-hip guy than Bill Gates.

“Would Gates have made the same decision? Possibly not… The moment Microsoft decided to attack Apple, they increased Apple’s credibility. That’s a given any time you decide to respond to an opponent you previously didn’t acknowledge even had right to get into the ring with you.

Anyone who has taken time to dissect the Microsoft ads (as so many have), knows they’re full of holes big enough to drive a truck through.

“Microsoft clearly knows this. The ads didn’t just accidentally end up being crafted in a way that’s quite misleading. The problem for Microsoft is that they really, really felt compelled to take on Apple, so much so they did it even though they didn’t have a leg to stand on. Someone promoted the argument that in the current recession, Apple’s weakness was price. It’s a weakness, but not as big a one as Microsoft wants to believe, not based on Apple’s sales.

There’s much more in the full article, including how Microsoft’s ads are amazingly similar to a certain genre of porn (young women being handed fist-fulls of cash on-camera), here.

MacDailyNews Take: Bill Gates was driven batshit insane by Apple’s ads long ago (see related articles below). Mr. So-Called-Genius-But-Really-Just-A-Liar/Thief/Poor-Copier-Who-Got-Lucky would have made the same stupid decision. For proof, just look at who he picked to plop into his corner office when he high-tailed it out of Dodge.

On March 27, 2009, we wrote: “Advertising 101. Day 1. #1 never mentions #2 (or #3, #4, etc.), lest they instantly confer upon their competitor(s) equality at least and superiority at worst. Crispin Porter + Bogusky, some geniuses. Unless they’re secretly working for Apple – if so, we take it all back. Great ad guys: Thanks for telling the world yet again that Apple Macs are cool and that PC buyers are cheap morons blinded by sticker price.”

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “bd” for the heads up.]

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