Can Microsoft possibly be spending $500 million on its Vista marketing campaign? Half a billion dollars to hump an operating system? Microsoft has never been known to underplay a new software launch – remember, this is the company that hired the Rolling Stones to sing Start Me Up at the Windows 95 launch. And it calls Vista its “most aggressive launch ever.” Heaven help us all!
Indeed, the planned scope of the campaign — 6.6 billion impressions in its first few months — is wondrous by today’s narrowly targeted, niche-media standards. “The Wow starts now,” two years in the making with McCann Worldgroup, encompasses an online consumer-participation promotion themed “Show us your wow” (the winner gets a trip around the world), sponsored webisodes at Clearification.com featuring “Daily Show” comedian Demitri Martin and an alternate-reality game called “Vanishing Point” that moves between online and offline. …
But it’s the TV ads that will garner much of the attention-and inevitably it won’t be all good. The spots picture “Wow”-murmuring moments such as a ’60s-looking family staring at a black-and-white TV as a rocket blasts into space, a hippie climbing up on scaffolding to look out over the Woodstock crowd, a young boy staring out his window at a early-morning snow-blanketed street, and a man putting down a chunk of rock on the table as those gathered watch the Berlin Wall being torn down on TV.
Ah yes, space travel, the fall of communism, and a new operating system. Wow!