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Cut to the Chase

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Company: Adobe Systems, San Jose, Calif.
Agency: N/A Market: IS
Quick chase: The banner for Adobe Acrobat 8 lures its audience in with the opportunity to kill some time playing a mindless game of "Pong" as a way of underscoring the product's ease of use. States the banner's headline: "Acrobat makes sharing documents easy, fun even." The landing page, however, gets down to business. It launches with a short, well-produced video that depicts the ease with which Acrobat 8 can get members of a far-flung organization onto the same page. The page also includes a wealth of examples of how the product allows users to create, combine and collaborate on documents consisting of a number of elements.
Clue: We'd forgotten how addictive "Pong" can be.

Company: Microsoft Corp., Redmond, Wash.
Agency: McCann Worldwide, New York
Market: Developers
Quick chase: An electronics game developer straight from central casting, replete with geek glasses, an extra-large mug of coffee and a handheld device strapped to his belt, confronts a world of danger, like the ones gamers encounter in online role-playing games such as "World of Warcraft." But this spread for Microsoft Visual Studio is more than a show-stopping image. It invites the target audience of developers into the scene by depicting one of their own at the heart of the action and with a message that goes to the heart of the matter: "Ogres are everywhere. But if your app is ahead of schedule, they leave you alone." Copy makes the point that the product can help developers build applications fast.
Clue: Can your software do this?
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