Microsoft seems to have a unique knack for producing infuriatingly shit advertising. Hot on the heels of its recent “Windows 7 was my idea” campaign, which literally makes no sense whatsoever, comes a series of ads for its Bing search engine.
There is absolutely no point to Bing as far as I can make out. It’s a search engine. That’s basically it. Why anyone would switch from the perfectly good search engine they are already using is a mystery to everyone but Bill Gates.
Obviously Microsoft has realised ten years after Google that search is, y’know, quite an important bit of the internet and it wants to make some money out of it, so it has decided to throw some money at Bing. Its chosen advertising strategy is to illustrate the inherent confusingness of using a search engine to find stuff on the web, by having apparently mentally unstable people barking random nonsense. However, Google isn’t really that confusing to use, is it? And, as far as my limited testing has ascertained, Bing is no better at delivering reliable results than any other search engine.
In the second ad, for example, a woman is seen mentioning “clutch bags”, which sends her friend into a frenzy of exclamations about “centrifugal clutches”, “Bagpuss” so on. But if you actually type “clutch bag” into Google, and then into Bing, you get very similar results around… erm, clutch bags.
The clutch bag ad is actually considerably less infuriating than the debut Bing ad, which also seems to depict someone having a seizure and culminates in a railway station full of people squawking like monkeys. Both ads have an annoying bit in the tagline where someone says “bing” in a stupid high-pitched voice. The whole thing appears to have been written for, and conceived by, idiots.
What has information overload done to us? Well, it’s produced shit advertising like this for a start.