Microsoft’s Marketing Moves

SAN FRANCISCO Microsoft said it has created a central marketing group to streamline its advertising and marketing efforts. Mike Delman will be general manager of the group, reporting to Mich Mathews, corporate vp of marketing.

“This internal step is designed so that we’ll have an integrated team and it will make it easy to go to market,” said John Kahan, head of the global RM group.

The company may make further moves to house marketing resources together. Both Kahan and Steve Petitpas, head of worldwide advertising, said there would be no change in the individual groups’ advertising budgets. The team will directly and indirectly manage “upwards of $1 billion of marketing expenditures” and the company’s global agency relationships with McCann Worldgroup and Young & Rubicam, according to Microsoft.

Microsoft spent $260 million on domestic measured media during the first 10 months of 2004, per Nielsen Monitor-Plus.

“When dealing with a company of our size, you can outshout yourself,” Kahan said. Microsoft has the single largest corporate Web site, and MSN’s marketing will now be under the same umbrella as its other six business units: windows clients, mobile devices, business solutions, information worker, server and developer tools and Xbox/home.

“Advertising will be less of a silo,” said Petitpas. “This will definitely be good for our advertising and we’ll be able to deliver a more integrated story and work more easily with our agencies. The right hand and the left hand will know what each other are doing.”