REDMOND, Wash. — April 9, 2007 — Microsoft Corp. is addressing customer frustration with the complexity of security products in a new integrated marketing campaign launched today called Easy, Easier. The Microsoft® Forefront™ line of business security products is featured in a campaign that combines print and online advertising, a creative Web experience, integrated customer relationship marketing (CRM) and public relations. The campaign uses humorous metaphors to illustrate how defending against security threats with Forefront is easier than defending against virtually anything else — including far-fetched threats from aliens, ninjas and zombies.
The goal of this campaign, created by McCann Worldgroup San Francisco, is to emphasize Microsoft’s competitive differentiation in making security products easier to deploy, implement and manage.
“We wanted to connect with the customer in a new and different way,” said Rob Bagot, executive vice president and executive creative director at McCann Worldgroup San Francisco. “By using humor in a relevant fashion, we can engage and inform IT professionals at the same time.”
Feedback from customers worldwide indicated that many enjoyed the fact that Microsoft was using IT-relevant humor as an entry point into a serious conversation on security. The approach was seen as highly engaging and standing out from the typical marketing in the security category.
“I like that it was original and entertaining. It was very clever, eye-catching and memorable, which makes you want to learn more about Forefront,” said an IT professional who participated in a focus group about the ads.
The campaign is brought to life on the Web through interactive flash video, leading customers through an engaging experience that seamlessly introduces more in-depth product information as they move through the site. It also features real customer stories from leading global organizations such as the Vienna International Airport, SAS, and Cable & Wireless, which illustrate how Forefront products have helped customers easily enhance the security of their infrastructure and simplify the reporting and management of their security products.
The Forefront brand was launched 10 months ago, and since that time Microsoft has rolled out a series of new products under the Forefront name, including Forefront Security for Exchange Server, Forefront Security for SharePoint®, and Forefront Client Security (currently in beta). The Forefront family also includes Microsoft’s edge security products, Internet Security and Acceleration Server (ISA Server) and Intelligent Application Gateway (IAG) 2007, which will be re-launched under the Forefront brand with the next generation of products.
“We’ve heard loud and clear from business customers that security products not only need to provide the greatest level of protection but also must be easy to manage and integrate with existing infrastructure. This ease of use is one of the key competitive differentiators that Microsoft brings to the market with its Forefront security products,” said Steve Brown, director of product management for security and access product management at Microsoft.
The Easy, Easier campaign will be appearing in IT print and online media in the U.S. and 28 markets worldwide as well as throughout Microsoft’s digital properties. More information on Microsoft Forefront, the Easy, Easier campaign and related customer stories can be found at http://www.easyeasier.com.
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.
Note to editors: If you are interested in viewing additional information on Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft Web page at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass on Microsoft’s corporate information pages. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may since have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/contactpr.mspx.