The company spends more than $1 billion on advertising every year, and McCann and its subsidiaries had a lock on Microsoft for years.
But in the last few years, Microsoft has switched several of its accounts to other agencies. The highest profile win was probably Crispin Porter Bogusky (owned by MDC Partners), which took over Windows advertising in late 2008. Crispin created the Laptop Hunters campaign, where people walked into an Apple store with a few hundred bucks in their pockets and couldn’t find anything to buy, but had no trouble finding a Windows laptop at their desired price–not a bad response to years of sniping from Apple in its “I’m A Mac” ads.
McCann still does the work of buying media space for Microsoft ads, but last night Microsoft offered the contract up for bid, and a bunch of agencies are expected to respond.