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Microsoft: Let your fans support you.

CIMG3547 Microsoft just opened their first online store. It’s boring. It just sells software.

The irony is that Microsoft is in the middle if a gigantic ad campaign to rally their fans: I’m A PC. I think it’s a fantastic campaign. It makes customers feel great. It’s the perfect response to Apple’s negative campaign ads.

I was in Redmond last week and went to the employee store where there were crowds of people buying "I’m a PC" gear.  Kids were asking their parents for it.  It was fun. They had shirts and mugs and hats and stickers.

A slick ad campaign is only the start of winning hearts and minds. You need to give people a way to participate. You need to give them the tools to show their support.

Microsoft: Get rid of the software store and create a fan store, where we can buy shirts and stickers and all that stuff that lets us be a part of the fun. 

Lesson: If you don’t make it easy for customers to show their support, they won’t.

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  1. MattR November 20, 2008 at 8:30 am #

    There is always this store:

  2. Torley November 20, 2008 at 9:40 am #

    This lesson is overtrue but understated, Andy. A lot of companies seem to think they can get away with not giving deliberate instructions yet expecting results. They don’t consider the “silent complaints” that arise, e.g., a fan wonders where your promo materials are, then can’t find them, runs into broken links on your website, and gives up in exasperation. They consider it “not enough of a big deal” to let you know, and there’s a lost opportunity.

  3. Nathan Gilliatt November 20, 2008 at 10:12 am #

    And if you need an example, here’s a company who sells logo merchandise to fans who will never be able to buy their products:
    No connection, I’m just one of those fans. :-)

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