Viral marketing has key role in new Microsoft Ad campaign

For first time, Microsoft has integrated its above- and below-the-line marketing closely and made viral a key part of its £7m integrated UK push to persuade people to upgrade their Microsoft Office System over the next 18 months. The campaign, called "New Era", aims to influence IT experts and features actors in an office environment wearing dinosaur masks -- made by the creators of the beasts in 'Jurassic Park' -- to suggest it is time to "evolve" with the latest version of Microsoft Office. Nicola Casey, information worker lead at Microsoft UK, said: "This integrated marcoms campaign closely ties our above- and below-the-line messages together for the first time. "Coupled with the injection of humour, the 'New Era' campaign adds up to a radically different advertising approach for Microsoft." Online streaming video clips and online banners will direct audiences to the New Era website where they can trial products and find more information. The campaign includes print and outdoor advertising. London railway stations, including Victoria and Paddington, will be branded with campaign materials, and "dinosaur squads" will hand out copies of Microsoft's Smarter Working Guide. Separately, MSN UK said it plans to double its sales force and create 30 new jobs. New positions are being created in all areas of the sales team, including agency sales, client sales, pre-sales and field operations. UKFast is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites.

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