Will Microsoft’s Anti-Google ‘Scroogled’ Campaign Backfire?


By Patrick Coffee Comment

In case you missed it, those dumb “Bing challenge” ads aren’t the only front in Microsoft‘s ongoing war with Google. Over the holiday season the company started the “Scroogled” campaign taking its big competitor to task for…we don’t know, failing to protect customers’ privacy or offer “unbiased search results.”

We thought Microsoft had put the series to bed earlier, but they brought it back to life this week with a couple of spots attacking the Android phone for providing Google with an unfair advantage and, again, collecting users’ private information without their knowledge or consent. It’s all a bit more complicated than that, but the message is clear: Google is evil, because Microsoft would never in a million years use customer data in underhanded ways.

This is more about branding and reputation management than technology or the business practices of tech companies. The campaign is obviously working in some way or the company wouldn’t keep pumping out these ads. But Microsoft casting itself as David to Google’s Goliath? We don’t see that message as a long-term winner. It all makes the runner-up look more than a little desperate.