Campaigns: Second opinion

Suzanne Sinden, group account director at Ketchum, has worked on campaigns for IBM and Orange

Most in the PR industry reading this would applaud the creative ideas Edelman came up with and the high-profile coverage generated. However, I can't help but question whether the strategy really met Microsoft's key objective - to challenge the negative consumer attitudes towards the company.

The decision to build the campaign strategy around Microsoft's HR leadership confuses me. As a user of Microsoft products, I'm not concerned whether it is a good place to work.

The results of a perception audit into exactly how consumers form opinions about a company and the extent to which its internal best practices, such as HR leadership, improve overall perceptions might have resulted in a different media relations strategy.

What's more, I would have liked evidence of how consumers' views had shifted as a result of the campaign.

Don't get me wrong - I'm not saying that Bill Gates's charitable ways, the company's CSR programmes and HR initiatives aren't a good thing, but they are not enough to divert attention away from its well-publicised reputation issues.

With these points in mind, Edelman's campaign may have reduced Microsoft's recruitment costs, but has it salvaged the image that consumers have of the company?

Creativity: 4

Delivery: 2.5


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