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Where is the fizz, the pizazz, the let's-have-a-party and stand-in-line-groupie-thing, Vista-is-what-it's-all-about splash...?


Oh, sure, CNET, CNN and newspapers around the globe ran the required articles, saying Vista has arrived. And Bill Gates appeared on The Daily Show. So the public relations side of marketing seems to be grinding on. But, hey, even a guy like me who takes great pride in his ability to get good PR knows that this is the dull side of marketing.
Where's the party? Where are the Rolling Stones when we need them? Where's the start-it-up campaign that got so much attention for Microsoft years ago? Even the one NYC banner on launch day seems a minor blip on the radar screen for a product that took five years to build. Maybe Bill is just confused and thinks he is launching an Apple product:

The message I get from this lackluster launch is that there is no there there. In other words, there is no compelling reason to celebrate Vista. It's little more than an upgrade to XP, and not something we need to rush out and buy or go online to download. And it seems Window users are getting the message.
According to the articles I read, special midnight events for the Vista operating system and Office 2007 business software were met with a big yawn. There were few people in lines waiting to snatch up the new operating system and even less enthusiasm. And those who were in line often said they were inspired by the discount. Yikes! No product value in that message.
CNET says "the launch itself was a quiet affair in a midtown CompUSA store (the chain had organized midnight events at several of its stores), where it seemed like there were just as many reporters and camera crews as there were customers hoping to take home a copy of Vista."
Maybe Al Gillen, an analyst at technology research group IDC, is right. He "estimates it will take five to seven years before the majority of systems running XP are retired." Apparently, we don't need Vista until we need a new computer, and then if we purchase a PC, Vista is included in the purchase price. Whoopee!
Hey, Microsoft, I have been a Windows user since 1988. The least your marketing department could have done is send me and the millions of other Windows users an email, letter, coupon or some marketing piece to arouse my interest, maybe even get us to purshase the system.
Ever heard of building energy and word of mouth around a new product? Anybody in Redmond listening? Does anybody even care?

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Lewis Green, Founder and Managing Principal of L&G Business Solutions, LLC, (http://www.l-gsolutions.com) brings three decades of business management experience. L&G Business Solutions, LLC, represents his third company. Additionally, he held management positions with GTE Discovery Publications, Puget Sound Energy and Starbucks Coffee Company.

In addition to his business experiences, Lewis is a published author and a former journalist, sports writer and travel writer. His feature articles have appeared in books, magazines and newspapers throughout North America. He has taught in public schools; lobbied for organizations both in state capitols and in Washington, D.C.; delivered workshops, seminars, and training programs; and made presentations to audiences in colleges, businesses and professional organizations. Lewis also has served as a book editor with a large publisher, the Executive Editor overseeing four magazines, and a newspaper department editor. Lewis served eight years in the U.S. Air Force, where he received the Air Force Commendation Medal.