Bill Gates – Seinfeld Microsoft commercial is cool, there I said it.

This post was actually a comment I left on the discussion Noah Brier initiated on the new Microsoft commercial by Crispin Porter + Bogusky featuring Jerry Seinfeld and yes, Bill Gates.

Noah and his readers share some interesting opinions on the ad, you should surely check out.

My opinion,

This is how I judged the ad: something from Microsoft didn’t make me cringe, I didn’t shrug my shoulders and think, “hmm, ok”, but I had a semi-smile. So I like it.
Mac and pc have their share of good and bad (try using Pages and Numbers, a joke in comparison to office). I see Mac as a brilliant, yet naive, self righteous, punk college student majoring in art who thinks investment bankers are dumb with their formal clothes. And Microsoft is a single minded, organized, 30 something guy who doesn’t even recognize the existence of the college kid cos he’s busy doing genius investment banking, or making faster microchips. To see the college kid’s flaws you’ve got to put him in the real world (isn’t Apple feeling the heat now with its rapid growth) and to see the lighter side of the investment banker guy you have to meet him during the weekend when for all you know he’s watching Curb Your Enthusiasm on HBO on demand. You put “genius investment banker” & “not as drab as I presumed” together, you’re thinking “he’s cool”. That’s exactly what this ad does: shows you that MS has some sense of humor and is so mature and confident, is above attacking Mac.

Update: Here’s the second Gates – Seinfeld commercial

I like this one too, for the same reasons: doesn’t make me cringe and brings me a semi-smile, even some chuckles. Now all Microsoft needs to do is set a date, (the first week of September would have been a good idea), and launch some innovative yet realistic products.


5 thoughts on “Bill Gates – Seinfeld Microsoft commercial is cool, there I said it.

  1. This is standard CPB. Create a campaign which generates PR and media buzz, stirs speculation, generates “talk value”. Do anything but advertise a product or service.

    It’s Burger King. VW. Etc.

    And if people don’t get it they don’t understand the new culture. They are old world dead-enders that won’t matter to the brand anyway.

    But to respond directly to the “cool” thing, I don’t think borrowed interest campaigns are as successful when you borrow from yourself.

    I would love to have been at the pitch for this one – it just boggles the mind.

  2. “I don’t think borrowed interest campaigns are as successful when you borrow from yourself.” – Dames, could you explain that further?
    I agree, it’s classic CPB. Changing perceptions about a behemoth like Microsoft is not easy (for the same reason I like what Martin Agency is doing for Wal-mart), no one expects a single ad to do that, which is why I think this is a step in the right direction.

  3. Of course Heyz – What I meant was that this campaign (or at least this initial ad) wants to present a stew of classic CPB to us. A little BK nuttiness, a smidge of VW off-the-wall. They are literally borrowing from their own “known” style of work. It reminds me of the swedes back in the 90’s – remember that Miller stuff?

    IF this Teaser is representative of the campaign, it is the modern form of “bite-and-smile” (meaning “hey look at those people – I like them and they are microsoft so let us all like them) and doesn’t represent strategic thinking, problem-solving, creativity, craft or vision.

    But perhaps there is some vision I am not seeing yet. I still wouldn’t rate it very well as a teaser.

    I am not knocking you for your analysis at all. However I don’t think it is a fair analysis of this as an advertisement for a product or service. It should be judged as an ad from the viewpoint of a consumer rather than an advertising professional.


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