Head Blogs Editor Toni Bowers sent a link to the editorial staff here at TechRepublic today that made everyone cringe. Apparently Microsoft has launched a marketing campaign extolling the benefits of the soon-to-be-released Windows 7 that mimics the cheesy infomercials of late-night television fame. My initial response was, "What are they thinking?"
Now, two points of order here: (1) I like Windows 7, and I think it will sell well and make Microsoft tons of money. I have no doubt it will be my operating system of choice. (2) I am a very skeptical person (some would say cynical), and I just cannot believe this infomercial/launch party idea is good marketing. Heck, I cannot believe it even made it past the whiteboard from what must have been one lame brainstorming session.
But then I started to look closer at all the various videos that are available in this infomercial/party theme. And it occurred to me that the novice user, like my aunt who has been trying to decide whether to get a computer for years now, would actually benefit from these videos/parties because they are so nonconfrontational. The videos make everything seem so easy. I mean, look at these happy people, having a party, enjoying a new operating system — life is good and all is well with the world.
Then it hit me — my aunt and anyone else in the novice category will never attend one of these things, and therefore they are a waste of effort. Furthermore, for a skeptical (some say cynical) technical geek like me, the videos are downright painful.
Here, in all its glory, is the introductory video. Note that there are quite a few more on the YouTube Channel:
So let's put this to a vote. I have made my feelings obvious, how about yours. And, please expound on what you think of the videos, the launch party idea, and the whole marketing concept all together in the forum — am I wrong about this?
Mark W. Kaelin has been writing and editing stories about the IT industry, gadgets, finance, accounting, and tech-life for more than 25 years. Most recently, he has been a regular contributor to BreakingModern.com, aNewDomain.net, and TechRepublic.