Microsoft funding $300m advertising campaign for Windows and Windows Live

Following the launch of Windows Live Wave 2 earlier this month, its unsurprising to hear that Microsoft is gearing up for a large advertising campaign to push the new suite of services. With Windows Live aiming to be the Software and Services extension to Windows on the internet, the advertising campaign aims to promote this link and show the benefits offered by using Windows Live as part of your online experience.

The $300m advertising campaign mentioned by the New York Post is apparently still in the pitch stage, and from what we hear will cover Windows Vista + Windows Live, Live Search and also Windows Mobile. With an apparent launch date around late spring/early summer 2008, the ads are expected to run in both the USA and other key markets.

Whoever wins the campaign will have a challenging task in front of them, with a shift in consumer attitude towards the Windows brand much needed. The phrase Todd Bishop picked out is particularly key:

“They are trying to make Windows cool, relevant and Internet-centric,” said one source close to the company. “They don’t want to be seen as a stodgy computer company.”

On top of the perceptual challenges currently surrounding the Windows brand, there are also the measurable ones – sales of Windows Vista PCs, search share, the sale of Windows Mobile devices and the number of Windows Live users. These are all key if Microsoft is to draw in more advertisers wishing to run their own campaigns on Microsoft sites. After all, Kevin Johnson has his 10/20/30/40 mantra to aim for. I guess the question is whether the $300m is best spent on advertising, or put towards buying Yahoo ;)

Blue Monster TV spots anybody?

(via Todd Bishop)