by Mike Masnick
Tue, Oct 7th 2008 4:28am
We were among those who were quite surprised that Microsoft gave into the online criticism of its "buddy" ads starring Jerry Seinfeld and Bill Gates. As we noted, the ads were getting a ton of people talking, and set up plenty of opportunities to later plug Microsoft products. But, initially, they were just entertaining (if slightly awkward) content that did a good job bringing in viewers. Instead, Microsoft replaced it with the somewhat boring "I'm A PC" spots, that directly respond to Apple's "PC vs. Mac" ads. While the original critics claimed that these new ads were a lot more effective, I'd disagree. They're somewhat boring and what you'd expect. They're easy to tune out. And it appears that lots of people agree. A quick analysis has shown that the Gates-Seinfeld ads received many, many, many more online views than the new campaign. Obviously, that's not the only metric to use in measuring success, but it certainly suggests that Microsoft may have overreacted in pulling the plug so quickly.
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