Microsoft's Lame New Anti-Apple Ad: Macs Are For Kids


Microsoft’s (MSFT) latest anti-Apple (AAPL) ad has us scratching our heads: Since when has anyone thought Macs were kiddie computers?

Continuing the company’s “Laptop Hunters” ad series, once again we’re introduced to budget-conscious shoppers looking to buy a new computer and checking out both Macs and Windows-based laptops. This time, instead of redhead actress “I’m just not cool enough to be a Mac person” Lauren or “Macs are so sexy” Giampaolo, it’s a mother-and-son pair, Lisa and 11-year-old Jackson.

Great setup so far, and a scenario consumers can relate to. But here’s where the ad goes wrong:

  • Jackson mentions offhand he wants “a good gaming computer.” This is a fantastic line of attack for Microsoft: The Mac has a tiny library of professionally produced games compared to what’s on PCs (stores like Gamestop don’t even have Mac gaming sections). That’s a big deal for 11-year-olds like Jackson, who actually influence the market (as shown). But Microsoft fumbles the ball, and doesn’t follow through with what’s arguably their best anti-Mac selling point after “PCs are cheaper.”
  • Instead, Jackson’s mum makes an incredibly off-target anti-Apple smear: Checking out the Macs, she says “they’re kind of popular with this age.” Umm, no. Kids can’t afford Mac prices or appreciate Mac build quality. Far better for Microsoft to stick with what Lauren and Giampaolo said, acknowledge Macs are kind of popular with hip adults, but expensive.
  • And the ad’s worst moment: Shopping for features, Lisa and Jackson find one PC, and exclaim with glee “Blu-ray!” No one cares about Blu-ray. If Microsoft’s Windows people talked to Microsoft’s Xbox people they’d know that.

A swing and a miss. We’re still glad to see Microsoft getting aggressive in its bid to market PCs, especially after Apple spent years kicking Windows in the teeth while Microsoft did nothing. But this particular ad needs another edit.

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