Just received FastCompany’s new issue fir June, a Wow! what a cover story. Featured is the Ad agency Crispin Porter & Bogusky who won a $300 million dollar contract with Microsoft, winning over some pretty sweet choices.
Trouble is, on the cover, the question is asked, “Can This Dude make Microsoft Cool?” And just under that reads, “Alex Bogusky is the Steve Jobs of the Ad world. His $300 million mission: To Crush Apple.” You see, I thought , “Wow, this will be great! This is going to a be a juicy read.”
After reading it, I came to one very painful (for Microsoft and CP & B) conclusion: you can’t make a company cool just by hiring an ad agency. You have to actually make products that people want. Focus on the products and you might get somewhere. I found it laughable when the article pointed out that the CP & P agency was built on Macs, and then states, “…Keller and Reilly today are using their team as an early focus group for learning how to persuade Mac lovers to embrace Windows.”
Huh? Mac people switching to Windows? Absurd and strangely intriguing. I’ll post more on this later, but Wow. This made me wince, and I’m open minded when it comes to the great debate. (Okay a tiny bit biased.) At least these guys do know that you can’t create cool by riding on its back, and that chasing cool would be redundant. I’ll give CP & B their due, the Burger King commercials were successful (although creepy) and the TRUTH ads are done very well. They have a long, long road ahead though if they don’t have products that the early adopters want. It just won’t happen.