The copy in Microsoft Corp.’s print ad for its Windows XP operating system is powerful enough: "Make the meeting in Prague. Make the dinner at home." But combined with the visual image of a woman standing at her laptop computer at home with a baby in her arms, the ad is pure brilliance. It conveys the power of mobile computing in a simple, direct and impactful way.
Developed by Microsoft’s agency of record, McCann-Erickson Worldwide Inc., San Francisco, the print ad was part of a $200 million integrated campaign launched in October to introduce the Windows XP operating system with the tagline "Yes, you can."
While the overall campaign, also developed by McCann, was aimed at both consumer and business audiences, the print component honed in on specific product features of the XP operating system, such as wireless computing and video conferencing, which are mostly b-to-b focused. The ads ran in business magazines such as Business Week and Time, and tech titles such as PC World, PC Magazine and Wired.
Michael McLaren, exec VP at McCann in San Francisco, said the agency, above all, wanted to convey the reliability and manageability of the Windows XP operating system. "For the business audience, we wanted to focus on tools that would make a real impact on employees’ lives," he said. "This [ad] is a classic example of someone trying to balance work and travel and everything else."
The Chasers feel this ad does a great job communicating the idea that, by using Microsoft XP for real-time communications, business users can carry on the most important business of their lives.
Runner-up: Andersen Windows
Okay, it’s another windows ad. But this one is for Andersen Windows, which manufactures premium windows and patio doors for homebuilders and contractors.
To introduce its new 200 series product line, Andersen wanted to showcase features associated with quality and endurance, which its home building audience has a passion for, according to agency Campbell Mithun.
So the agency created a striking ad featuring a beautiful photo of an empty room, focusing on a terra cotta wall with French doors surrounded by paned windows. In typical Andersen style, light is pouring through the glass to throw elongated shadows on the warm wood floors. The copy reads, "There’s a point when a house becomes a home. If you’re good, it’s before anyone moves in."
The photo, headline and smartly written body copy all convey the old adage: There’s no place like home.