Is it me or is Microsoft really starting to get its advertising act together? The company that once sat in silence while it got steamrolled by a smug slacker named Mac and a dweeb named PC is punching back with a new ad that exploits Apple's current weakness: price.
Microsoft is done melting your heart with the cute-kid "Rookies", and is moving on to cash-strapped consumers with the first of its "Laptop Hunters" spots, now airing repeatedly in primetime on major networks.
Our first laptop hunter is Lauren, a free-spirited twenty-something with wild red hair searching for a laptop with "speed, a comfortable keyboard and a 17-inch screen" for under a thousand bucks.
It's worth noting that Lauren — who verges on being a hipster caricature but never quite goes over the edge — does not seem tech savvy and doesn't seem to know the difference between a PC and a Mac. She never mentions Windows or what kinds of applications she uses. She's all about the screen size and keyboard and, of course, the price. But hey, this is what most consumers are like. Apologies to those obsessed with their gizmos and gadgets, but you're in the minority.
Lauren's deal is if she finds a laptop that meets her needs, it will be paid for. Wow, not bad. I really could have used this support when I bought my $650 Toshiba Satellite laptop a couple months ago. Microsoft, if you're listening, I'm available as a Laptop Hunter. Have your people call my people.
Anyway, Lucky Lauren strolls around what looks like a Best Buy quickly browsing Windows laptops. She makes some mental notes before heading to … drum roll … an Apple Store!
She walks in … cut … she walks out, discouraged. Clearly, this her first time feeling snubbed by Apple as she seems genuinely surprised that the only laptop under $1000 is the 13.3-inch white MacBook. Lauren, you should've known better.
On her drive back to the Best Buy, a bummed-out Lauren says that she would have to double her budget to buy a Mac with her needs, and that is "just not feasible." Then comes the line that defines the whole commercial: "I'm just not cool enough to be a Mac person," she says.
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