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WOOING SMALL BUSINESSES

By Published on .

Marketer: IBM Corp.

Where to find it: Business Week.com, Wired.com

Critique: The Big Internet Myth hasn't died. At least according to the banners that IBM Corp. is running for its small-business series of computers. The premise of the ads is that even the smallest of companies can compete in the global market through the power of home computing and the Internet.

Which is an easy ideal to promote if you happen to be one of the largest companies in the world. Just ask the residents of fabled Lusk, Wyo., featured in the latest Microsoft Corp. commercials.

Why companies like Big Blue and Microsoft insist on pretending they might be frightened by a guy in his basement with a butch computer escapes us. Heck, the U.S. government doesn't seem to make Microsoft blink.

True, having good equipment can make a small business more competitive and better able to serve its customers. But ads such as this one continue to stroke the ego of the small-time entrepreneur and support the myth that anyone can take on the big boys.

So in the end, the ad exaggerates. But at least the dog's cute.

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