Microsoft launched it’s new “decision engine” Bing last week to much hoopla and fanfare. And I have got to say – aside from the fact that MSFT pays my husband’s salary and our ridiculous health care bills from last year – I am grooving on this. Finally, FINALLY, I feel MSFT has tried to launch a brand in the right way. I’ve used it and I have to admit, I kind of like it – maybe it’s the underdog quality of the whole thing (yes, MSFT is an underdog when it comes to Google). But I am rooting for them, if anything to show them a good lesson in what can happen when they launch something correctly and brand it appropriately.
1) The name is fun. Live Search was ridiculous and I would beat whoever came up with that. I was always getting confused between the search engine, the IM functionality (technically “live”)and their small business offering.(Office Live). Talk about naming gridlock. I like that Ballmer stated that the name was like the sound you hear when you find something. BING!
2) The interface is nice. I love the amazing location-based photos they are using in the imagery. It’d different, slick and fresh.
3) The ads ROCK. Finally, FINALLY, decent Microsoft branding ads – other than the Mojave work, done by my brilliant friends at Bradley Montgomery Advertising and the recent I’m a PC ads, attacking the hilarious Apple campaign, the Bing ads are fun, fresh and on message. I love the one with the people rambling unintelligibly as confused onlookers try to make sense of their gibberish – a great manisfestation of the sometimes frustrating world of online search. I have never been a fan of MSFT’s schizophrenic brand strategy – different ad agencies, messages, look and feel, etc. – but this is a great look for them. Finally they have gotten marketing that lives up to the technology.
I am a huge Google fan and use it for many things – Blogger, Analytics, Search. But I am willing to give Bing a try and I hope others will, too. I think Google needs some competition to keep them on their toes and innovating. BING!