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Far out, man! Microsoft’s wasted 1970s campaign to diss VMware. Can you dig it?!

It was hard to miss. As I was getting my daily dose of tech news yesterday, I started seeing the Microsoft “Tad” ads. I saw it first on NetworkWorld, then on InformationWeek. I later heard that it was also on Tech Republic, ComputerWorld, ZDNet, a big ad in the Wall Street Journal, and who knows where else Microsoft spent a bunch of its hard-earned money, just to malign VMware. The ads lead back to a custom microsite that Microsoft built… more money spent on VMware. (Hmmm… I’m seeing a trend/complex here as Microsoft’s own virtualization website mentions VMware as many times as it mentions Microsoft!)

These tactics do garner attention. I’ve seen the tweets and retweets from Microsofties and their fans; all quite happy about this new not-so-veiled volley of venom thrown at VM-limited… er, VMware.

But what are others, outside the influence of the Redmond compound, saying? I think @jbrodkin at Ars Technica’s tweet sums it up pretty well “Hey @mIcrosoft, congrats on the lamest ad campaign ever”. Or the write-up at Business Insider, saying “Still, we're a little dumbfounded that adults not only thought this was a good idea, but spent time and energy on it.”



VMware – Business Value and Reliability that Customers Can Count On

This latest Microsoft campaign once again highlights the difference in focus between VMware and Microsoft. Given a million dollars, both companies would spend it very differently. Microsoft would spend (actually, has already spent) its million dollars on advertising, but not advertising to tell prospective customers about why its product is better, but on parody videos of VMware.

VMware, on the other hand, would spend our resources first on innovation, and then, on marketing to communicate how our products deliver greater business value. We have a track record of delivering groundbreaking innovations with every release of our products and we intend to continue our legacy. It’s what our customers have come to expect from VMware: business value through innovation, reliability that customers can count on.

What’s that business value from VMware look like? Revlon CIO David Giambruno is getting “six 9’s of uptime” with “savings and cost avoidance of $70.4 million” by working with VMware. He’s virtualized Exchange, SQL, and Oracle, and built out a private cloud that’s a competitive weapon for Revlon. So we’ll stay focused on innovating to deliver business value to customers like Revlon, and Southwest Airlines, and NYSE, and leave it to Microsoft to spend their time and money making parody videos and debates between Microsoft employees and fictitious characters. 


Net-net: CIOs and IT Decision Makers are Picking VMware

An audience poll from the last Gartner Datacenter Conference revealed that 71% of respondents expect VMware to be central to their private cloud strategy in 2015, while only 23% mentioned Microsoft – that’s more than a 3-to-1 ratio of IT decision makers picking VMware. It is just one example of how CIOs and IT decisions makers see VMware as the clear leader for virtualization and cloud computing.

So while the Tad videos may be good for some cheap laughs and reminiscing about the 70s – although there is great irony in Microsoft calling anyone else dated/behind the times/old school, as it’s hard to think of another company that’s been playing catch up on every technology trend of the 21st century (mobile, tablets, cloud, search) – what companies really need is help in maximizing the business value from virtualization and cloud computing. That’s where VMware comes in.

Peace out.


VMware’s track record of industry-leading innovations


3 thoughts on “Far out, man! Microsoft’s wasted 1970s campaign to diss VMware. Can you dig it?!

  1. Tad

    Great post. You can always see Ballmer’s temper leaking through his marketing department when he feels some real pressure

  2. zay

    Dear VMware, you should respond to the points made in the video. Not question why the video was made.

  3. Vegasblue

    Wow you all have no sense of humor. This is a brilliant campaign. The concept, the production work, the acting, its hilarious. You’ve got to give the ad agency huge kudos for developing a brilliant concept to help shatter microsoft’s stiff image. Its a little unfair you come down so hard on the campaign b/c you disagree with the message. This was well thought and brilliant.

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