Microsoft is a one of the most popular software distributors in the world. The company was one of the pioneers in the software field and expanded to the incredible magnitude. However, the situation in the computer market has changed with time. Thus, even giant companies like Microsoft had to react to business shifts and review their strategy and directions.
The current work is aimed to discuss and evaluate Microsoft’s strategy during the poor and good economic times. Also, it analyses the “I’m PC” campaign from the standpoint of acknowledging Apple’s campaign. The paper deliberates on whether Microsoft took a good or wrong step with the “I’m PC”.
During last two decades, Microsoft has faced the strongest competition. Since 1975, when it was originally founded by Bill Gates and Paul Allen (Alfred, 2011), the Apple’s competition has been the strongest. The situation before 2000 was significantly different, because Microsoft monopolized the software market. During the good times, the strategy of Microsoft was aimed to keep the market share and continue selling their software. However, the situation has changed because Microsoft tried to compete in other dimensions such as browsers (Internet Explorer), gamer’s platforms (Xbox), and search engines (Bing). In 2007, launching of Windows Vista damaged Microsoft’s reputation, as the new software used to have bugs and multiple issues. Therefore, the failure resulted in a big shift of customers from Microsoft to Apple.
Consequently, Microsoft cannot continue with their classical strategy that was effective for many years. The current market situation forces Microsoft to become followers rather than leaders, and attempt to go in hand with trends and competition. The company should reflect movements of the major market players. A vivid example is when Apple launched its campaign and made the download their OSX Yosemite update free of charge for all users. Microsoft reacted to the strategy by allowing existing users to upgrade their previous Windows version to Windows 10 for free. Thus, the company cannot charge the same price because they no longer dominate the market. Moreover, the businesses have changed the marketing approach during recession time. Furthermore, if a company is trying to cover many operational areas, it begins diluting the core competence and focus. Thus, big companies suffer from the fact that they are slow-moving and unable to react quickly to changes on the market. Consumer’s expectations and demands are increasing more and more, which encourages the companies to update and adjust more frequently.
Pros and cons of Microsoft “I’m a PC” campaign
The first “I’m PC” campaigns appeared in September 2008. With the advertisement campaign Microsoft attempted to reply to Apple’s ads. The company tried to say that PC’s are the computers for the rest of us (Gobry, 2010).
The introduction of the campaign affected the pricing policy. The consumers know that the price of Apple is higher than of Microsoft. The strategy is a justified movement by Microsoft, since they cover more segments on the market, making computers available to middle and lower middle classes. On the other hand, Microsoft accepted that Apple starts to attack the company’s positions on the market. By answering to Apple, the management proved what was said in commercials. Microsoft acted defensive, which is not the appropriate behavior for the company that owns a major market share. Moreover, the campaign was made with the help of Mac computers (Loftus, 2008).
Microsoft should consider carefully their strategy and every movement. Previously, it was easier to remain in the same competitive positions and keep the same level of market share. However, due to aggressive to competition and high quantity of available substitutes, even giants such as Microsoft and Apple have to consider their strategy and promotion with a greater attention.