It’s the User Experience Stupid!
The PC vs. Mac ad war continues to rage.
A few weeks ago I wrote about the first of what has become a series of PC “Laptop Hunters” ads. I’m continuing to stand being my original analysis of the “Lauren” ad. The two subsequent PC Hunters ads weren’t quite the train wreck that Lauren was, but I still found the people in the ads obnoxious and ill-informed; shouting off random computer parts and claiming to be tech savvy doesn’t appeal to me at all.
The biggest problem with these ads is that they completely ignore the user experience. Microsoft doesn’t sell Blu-ray drives, monitors, or graphics cards. They sell software. They sell a user experience, and that experience is lacking but it isn’t unsellable. These ads were pretty damn good:
These two ads are simple and elegant. They address the user experience in a clear and friendly manner. Plus, how can you get have a problem with those little girls? They seem far more intelligent than the tools that appear in the PC Hunters ads. The four year-old came across as more authoritative and likable than Lauren, Giampalolo, Lisa, or Jackson.
In response, Apple is using the same old formula to continue point out the flawed Windows user experience, and why not? These ads have been working wonders. Here are two of the new ones:
Another problem that Microsoft has is that Apple has had an active and preachy community for decades. There wasn’t a completely devoted community of PC users in the same way that there was a Mac community. Tight knit communities form around minority views. Additionally, many of the devoted PC users of the past (like myself) jumped ship to Apple over the past few years.
If Microsoft want’s to plug the holes, the answer isn’t poking holes at Apple; Microsoft doesn’t have the credibility to pull it off. They need to prop up their product and make it as cute, pretty, and above all, as likable as possible. They need to highlight the virtues of their own user experience, even if there aren’t many of them.