marketing

Microsoft has released a number of new advertisements that carry on the "Smoked by Windows Phone" marketing campaign, which started at CES 2012 earlier this year. Ben ('The PC Guy') Rudolph heads up the adverts that are set to air on TV. The above video shows Rudolph challenging a member of public on the streets of Seattle (as opposed to Microsoft Stores) to see who can locate and share a restaurant with friends the fastest.

We like the new style used in the videos, which appear to be slightly more calm and focus more on the beauty of Windows Phone instead of simply how many wins the platform can achieve. Rudolph runs the participant through exactly why Windows Phone is more efficient at everyday tasks. Luckily, he gave Ramona a shiny new cyan Lumia 900 so Android wont slow her down in future.

Be sure to check out the Microsoft YouTube playlist of the advertisements to view the rest.

Source: Microsoft (YouTube playlist); via: Windows Team Blog

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LinkedIn, the service, is a professional social network that boasts a membership of over 160,000,000 that spans over 200 countries and territories.  The LinkedIn app for Windows Phone ties it all together and delivers the network rather nicely to your Windows Phone.

LinkedIn is apparently marketing the LinkedIn app through bulk emails but there's one slight problem. The graphic shows the app running on a Nokia Lumia 800 but references "LinkedIn for Windows Mobile". Not only once but twice.

Now we can understand that typos occur so we can cut the ad agency a little slack. But come on... it's been almost two years now since Windows Phone 7 took over as the Windows mobile platform.

The good news is the LinkedIn Marketplace description references Windows Phone. If you're a LinkedIn member or look to join the network and want a mobile solution, check out the free LinkedIn app here at the Windows Mobile...err.. the Windows Phone Marketplace.

Thanks, everyone, for the tip!

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The Smoked by Windows Phone challenge, the popular marketing campaign that was born back at CES 2012, has made its way to Toronto, Canada. The public are challenged by the Windows Phone team to see if their smartphone can beat Microsoft's mobile OS and pocket $100. As usual, these challenges include common tasks such as uploading a photo to Facebook.

Windows Phone has been steadily growing in reach when it comes to Canada. The 4G Radar and Lumia 900 are both available to take advantage of faster network speeds, and carriers are supporting the platform with stocking a number of devices. But we've yet to see a strong push by Nokia or Microsoft so it's good to see such marketing ongoing.

If you wish to check out the Windows Phone challenge, here are the event locations for the next few days:

  • May 25: Yonge and Eglington - 12pm-8pm
  • May 26: The Danforth - 10am-6pm
  • May 27: Yonge and Dundas - 11am-5pm

Thanks, Charles, for sending in the photos!

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Do you own a Windows Phone that's connected on a AT&T account? You might not be aware of this, but you can restrict the use of personal data, should you have any privacy concerns or simply do not wish for the carrier to contact you. Customer Proprietary Network Information (or CPNI) is personal information obtained by the telecommunications company through providing a service to the customer. 

So what is this all about, and should you be bothered? AT&T collects information from you based on the services you have on your account. All carriers (and many companies) carry out the same actions to offer similar services / products to customers. If you've received a call from a company you use often who are attempting to sell you a related product, this is exactly what we're talking about.

Majority of the time the offers are exclusive to that call and may not be available online or in-stores. A mobile carrier may offer the latest Windows Phone at a discounted price, or on a plan that has 6 months subtracted from the contract. In this case, AT&T will contact you and provide said offers, but according to the privacy policy the carrier will not sell / disclose CPNI to third-parties without customer consent. You'll need to check the policies of other carriers and companies to be sure they don't sell on your information.

To keep everything in check and restrict AT&T's use of your CPNI, be sure to give the carrier a call. Should you feel the need to do so with any other company, you can also enquire to request exclusion from future marketing and promotional offers where possible.

Source: AT&T; Thanks EasyPeasyJD for the tip!

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"Operation Rolling Thunder": a slow, steady and gradual increase in marketing for Nokia in the U.S.

At least that's what we're lead to believe how Nokia and AT&T are approaching the Lumia 900, the flagship Windows Phone on the nation's largest carrier. While supplies have been tight these last few weeks, Nokia seems to be increasing the ship rates for the devices in all colors with most outlets now having stock (and we're still expecting that Magenta version in a few weeks).

According to AT&T employee Jeffery Brown, there are a few changes coming down the line:

  • AT&T reps are now required to sell at least one Nokia Lumia 900 by the end of April
  • "Marketing to go into high gear in May, June."

Both of those certainly sound plausible and we're contacting some of our other AT&T reps to confirm. But in all likelihood as the Lumia 900 continues to makes waves e.g. the comments by Steve Wozniak and regular non-tech users get their hands on the phone, Nokia and AT&T will ramp up their advertising accordingly.

In fact, reader Franklin S. contacted us the other night with this little gem:

"The Lumia 900 has taken over 42nd St - Grand Central station (NYC). They have lots of ADs, from the "S" shuttle passageway to the 4,5,6 side.  Unfortunately I did not take pictures."

Well, we'll try to grab a few pics today if we get a moment to show everyone but we still think, despite everything that has happened so far that this is just the beginning.

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The "Your App Here" marketing campaign is a venture by both Microsoft and Nokia that aims to help Windows Phone developers establish a foothold in the online media world with free advertising / promotion for selected apps.

We've previously covered the campaign at entry intervals, and it seems April 30th marks the closing date for the last known campaign in June. Microsoft has sent out a reminder email to developers that contains the following:

"Windows Phone & Nokia are looking for innovative new apps targeted for Windows Phone 7.5 to showcase in our promotional ad campaign. This opportunity is open to all developers with newly published Windows Phone apps relevant to the U.S. Marketplace. [...]  Tell us about your app today; the last submission deadline is April 30th."

Should you desire to get your app featured on the last campaign, be sure to get your app submission in by April 30th. Check out some photos below of the marketing in action (click for larger versions) for a handful of apps by Techark Solutions.

Thanks Pratik for the campaign images!

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Today marks day one of the Dare to Live marketing campaign by Microsoft and Nokia that will have the teams tour the UK challenging the public to see if their smartphones can beat Windows Phone (white Lumia 800s were used at today's event). Much like the Smoked by Windows Phone challenges that have been held across the globe, participants will pocket £20 on the street if they can beat Windows Phone at standard tasks.

Should they lose, participants will have the opportunity to take on the Microsoft team with a dare. Whether it be tightrope walking or the Big Air, the dares are fear destroying. We went down to the Westfield shopping centre in Shepard's Bush to see what was happening. As one can see from the photos, it was quite a sight to see inside the building. There were a number of losing contestants who took to the ropes and bagged themselves a "DARED" Windows Phone shirt.

Be sure to view the tour calendar to be sure as to when the team will be at a city near you. For now check out more photos after the break.

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The Smartphone Beta Test is the latest marketing campaign from Nokia that's to be continuously rolled out in the U.S. The videos highlight key features of the Lumia handsets, with the above commercial focusing on the Carl Zeiss optics. Nokia is set to release more firmware updates to introduce Internet sharing among other features missing from the Windows Phone experience.

It's interesting that the ad states the Lumia handsets sport better camera specifications for low-light photography, which we'd agree with. But we've said before that it would appear as though the hardware is a slight let down with regards to performance on the Lumia 900.

Source: Youtube; thanks Konstantin for the tip!

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We recently put the question to you whether Microsoft is doing enough to promote and market Windows Phone, and now we've just caught wind of a new campaign kicking off from the software giant in the UK. The Windows Phone team will be touring the country (10 cities - 11 weeks) and challenging participants who believe their smartphone is faster than a Windows Phone.

Much like the Smoked by Windows Phone campaign, should contestants win the "Dare to Live" challenge, they'll pocket £20 there and then. But should they lose, and this is the exciting part, they'll not have to hold a sign up and announce their loss, oh no. Microsoft is taking things to the next level with actual fear driven activities instead.

Throughout each week the team will hold the challenges, but on every Saturday they will hold adrenaline intensive activities that will push yourself beyond comfortable limits. From tightrope walking to the Big Air, you're destined to get a buzz for losing to Windows Phone. Think of it as Smoked by Windows Phone with a twist for losing participants.

As well as the challenge and campaign, Microsoft is teaming up with O2 and Phones4U to provide a number of deals on Windows Phones throughout the duration of the event. Phones4U is currently featured with an up-to £100 cash back on the Lumia 800 when trading in your old phone. Be sure to check out the Dare to Live Facebook page for more details about locations, dates and -of course- the special offers.

Kicking off on April 21st, do you dare the live? The team is hitting London this week for the challenges. Should you be lucky (or unlucky) enough to lose you'll find yourself on a tightrope at the Westfield shopping centre in Shepherds Bush this coming Saturday. Be sure to pop along to see the action, WPCentral will be there to return with some photos of course.

Source: Dare to LiveWindows Phone UK; thanks Mark for the heads up!

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It would appear that mobile operators in Europe aren't impressed with what Nokia (and Windows Phone as a whole) has to offer to battle Google and Apple in the market. According to Reuters, four operators have stated that Nokia handsets have not been 'good enough' to compete with the iPhone and Samsung Galaxy devices.

One operator executive (who wished to remain anonymous) had the following to say:

"No one comes into the store and asks for a Windows phone. Nokia have given themselves a double challenge: to restore their credibility in terms of making hardware smartphones and succeed with the Microsoft Windows operating system, which lags in the market."

Now, we'll be the first to agree with the fact that not many customers will walk into a store and ask for a Windows Phone as the platform hasn't had the promotion or momentum that it so desperately requires. Microsoft has started their Smoked by Windows Phone campaign in a number of countries to build this momentum to a respectable pace, and Nokia has been hard at work with "The Amazing Everyday" and hosting live events. Cue "Rolling Thunder"? The trouble is there's just too much to do.

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The Windows Phone team has taken the Smoked by Windows Phone challenge to Italy with a steady stream of contestants attempting to best the platform. Should they lose they would (as usual) have to hold up a sign and announce they've been smoked by a Windows Phone. But should they win, and this is the interesting part, they'd pocket a pair of headphones.

What's so interesting about the headphones? They're shaped like a giant phone.

Possibly the coolest prize from the challenge? The Windows Phone Italy team has been keeping everyone up-to-date with latest happenings on their Twitter account, paying particular attention to the charts which record the wins / loses. According to the photos published, Windows Phone appeared to have been holding its own successfully.

Check out more photos after the break. Via: Plaffo

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What do you get when you pack a lift full of Russians, paid for by the Nokia Lumia marketing budget? Well, it's fairly difficult to describe so we'll let the three videos do the explaining of some superb marketing stunts.

The first video shows unsuspected members of the public in the "Amazing Nokia Lift" when a horde of what appears to be police officers charge into the small space and stare that person down. Once they've completely freaked out, the headwear is removed and a superbly executed version of "I Will Survive" is performed. 

Next up, we've got the Amazing Nokia Lift - Girls (pretty self-explanatory):

Not to mention the Amazing Nokia Lift - Angry Birds, which is a rampaging onslaught of character costumes being flung at the lift as it halts at each floor:

What's amazing about Nokia is how diverse their campaigns are. From 4D projection music events all the way to blowing away the competition with Lumia handsets, there seems to be no limit to the imagination of those involved. In the end we all now know that Russians win, at basically everything.

Sources: Youtube (Police, Girls, Angry birds); thanks everyone who tipped us!

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Nokia has been aggressively marketing their Lumia family of Windows Phones on a massive global scale, with events sporting 4D projections, augmented reality experiences, and live music performances the manufacturer appears to have extraordinarily deep pockets for the marketing budget, something that Microsoft needs from an OEM with its new mobile platform. 

As well as Nokia we've seen Microsoft pushing hard with carriers and the famous Smoked by Windows Phone campaign. Following on from this successful array of stunts, Nokia has kicked off "Blown away by Lumia" in India, which hasn't gone down too well with Samsung, who is backing the Galaxy family of devices. The Finnish manufacturer also took to the streets in the UK with the "Lumia Challenge", sharing the same concept.

Back to the "Blown Away by Lumia" campaign in India, check out the following video, which is one of many adverts Nokia has where competitor handsets are literally 'blown away' by Lumia Windows Phones.

As with the Smoked by Windows Phone challenges, contestants have to try and best the Windows Phone (a Lumia handset in this case) with general smartphone tasks, such as taking a photo and uploading it to Facebook. Which ever device completes the task first wins. Should the contestant lose, they have to hold up a sign that reads: 'My phone just got blown away by the Nokia Lumia'.

Nokia explains the challenges were validated by Nielsen, with Nokia India Director of Marketing, Viral Oza, commenting the following on the accusations of unethical campaigning:

"The Lumia 800 emerged as a clear winner by winning 94% of the total 104 challenges timed by Nielsen. This challenge has not been created to target competition but to highlight the social media capabilities of the device."

Samsung, however, shares a different view and an Indian spokesperson stated that the campaign is "clearly unethical". The complaint is based on the view that the video clips Nokia has uploaded mostly target the Korean manufacturer's popular devices. It's a fierce battle between the two handset makers in India so it'll be interesting to see how this plays off in the future, especially with Samsung's Windows Phone lineup.

What do you guys think of Samsung's claims?

Source: India Times

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AT&T has revealed that Lumia 900 marketing plans (combined with Nokia and Microsoft) will best any product they've launched before - including the famous iPhone. In an interview with CNET, AT&T device head Jeff Bradley, said that it'll be a notch up on anything the company has attempted previously.  We met with AT&T reps early today and have no doubt that AT&T's efforts to market the new Windows Phones should be a full court press.

But should we be surprised? The Lumia 900 on AT&T is Microsoft's (and Nokia's) best chance of survival in the competitive mobile market. Windows Phone has been performing arguably well with Nokia marketing the 710 and 800 on a global scale, but the Lumia 900 is the big gun for the U.S.

We previously covered how the Lumia 900 will be given "hero status" in the AT&T mobile arsenal. So how will they go about it? How will the stores convince people that Windows Phone is a solid choice against the iPhone and Android?  AT&T has told us that we can expect to see banners in windows of AT&T stores and Windows Phone walls featuring the TITAN II and Lumia 900.  In a nutshell, we were told AT&T stores are going to look like Nokia stores.

As well as the promotional material, we can confirm that we're likely to see demonstration tables, accessories (including skins, Monster Headsets, third-party cases, screen protectors, and more) and -of course- salestaff training. Nokia will be training employees to compliment the web training they'll receive from AT&T. This will hopefully result in more platform awareness internally as well as increasing the Windows Phone recommendation chance rate to customers.

Let's see what April 8th brings us, I would recommend we strap ourselves in. Then again, it could be a belly flop. Fingers crossed that it wont be and AT&T / Nokia / Microsoft get this right.

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Don't colour us surprised if this is true to some extent as it's a simple marketing stunt that involves cash, but reports are coming in that the Smoked by Windows Phone challenges are sometimes rigged, or those who actually beat Microsoft's OS were denied their win / prize. Not only are relatively large sums of money involved, but Microsoft recently bumped the stakes to include a limited edition PC worth $1,000.

According to Sahas Katta, from Skatter Tech, he was wrongfully robbed of his glory (and brand-spanking new PC) by a Microsoft employee who refused to accept that his Android handset won. Katta went along to the Santa Clara Microsoft Store to give the challenge a go after hearing about the stakes increase. Using an Android handset with widgets galore to combat the Windows Phone live tiles, Katta felt prepared for the task that would be presented to him by the employee. 

"The Microsoft Store employee I was up against then explained the selected challenge. Her exact words were the following: 'bring up the weather of two different cities.' The one who could do that first would win. I felt like I struck gold since I knew I already had two weather widgets on my home screen: one for my current location (San Jose, CA) and another for Berkeley, CA.

After a three-second count down, I hit the power button on my phone and said 'DONE!' out loud. I had disabled the lock screen entirely, which is a rather awesome out-of-the-box feature of Android that takes you straight to the home screen with a single push of the power button. I didn’t even need to touch the screen, since the two weather widgets were already there."

According to Katta, having won the challenge by a mere few seconds, the employee turned around to say that Windows Phone won because "it displays the weather right there." Confusing indeed since that's exactly what the Android widgets did as well - they both displayed the weather 'right there'. After speaking to a manager and receiving bizarre reasons as to why he lost, Katta left the Microsoft Store empty handed. 

All we'll say is: it's not the first time a company has had problems with a marketing stunt, so we shouldn't be surprised if - in this case - the Smoked by Windows Phone challenge differs between employees, or is judged slightly differently. Though I would like to add that the manager should have handled the situation more professionally, if what Katta reported on had actually occurred. (And this is a big "if" as we're just taking their word).

Have you been to challenge Microsoft and Windows Phone in the challenges? If so, did you notice any cheating?

Source: Skatter Tech; thanks Sandy for the heads up!

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To celebrate the launch of the Lumia 800 in Denmark, Nokia and carrier Telia have teamed up to pull off an interesting stunt - the "Human Keyboard". We've previously seen the scale of the country's Lumia handset launch with an event being held in Copenhagen back in January, but it's good to see carrier support added in.

The Human Keyboard features a keyboard mat laid out on the pavement in front a store. We then have five musicians stood in the store window who play corresponding music notes with instruments in the attempt to match the members of public who step on the mat.

Of course, you'd have to have some fun and try to trick the musicians, which is exactly what we see in the above video. You can purchase the Lumia 800 in cyan at the Telia online store.

Source: YouTube; thanks Ellis for the tip!

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Nokia handed Jed Cullen, professional skateboarder, a Lumia 900 to use around Barcelona in a marketing stunt. The above video follows on from Pip Andersen free running around the city, and shows Cullen using numerous features including Zune, Bing Search and Tango (video conferencing). 

Taking the Lumia 900 to the extreme, how far could you push wielding the Windows Phone?

Source: YouTube

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Microsoft's Smoked by Windows Phone marketing campaign is still going strong, which all stemmed from CES 2012 in Las Vegas where Ben Rudolph challenged event attendees. The campaign made the move to Microsoft Stores across California, Hong Kong, and is currently being expanded to cover TV advertising. The challenges involved are simple smartphone tasks - which ever phone completes the task first wins.

With $100 on the table there's never a shortage of interested smartphone owners who believe they can smoke a Windows Phone. We previously looked at the announcement made by Microsoft Singapore on their Facebook page, stating the marketing campaign would be brought to the country "very soon". 

The above montage of clips is from ITShow 2012 where the Smoked by Windows Phone challenge was held (March 9-10). End result from the event was: 38 wins, 3 draws and 3 loses.

Source: YouTube; thanks Greg for the tip!

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When advertising in newspapers, one would believe that a few spots here and there would be sufficient enough, right? According to the above photo, this apparently isn't the case at Nokia. The UK's The Sun newspaper sports a number of advertisements in one edition. Should the reader not notice a Windows Phone advert on one or two pages, they certainly will now.

We're looking to seriously consider starting up nokialumiapromotion.com, to keep up with all the latest news surrounding their huge global marketing campaign. Then again, the manufacturer depends on the platform to succeed, so we expect to see much more from both Nokia and Microsoft (as well as other OEMs once things pick up).

Source: CoolSmartphone, via: WMPU

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AdDuplex has ran another marketing and monetization interview with a Windows Phone developer. This time they've managed to get 4Bros Studio, developers of the incredibly successful Taptitude, on board for some insightful answers.  

Taptitude passed the 100,000 downloads checkpoint earlier in January and is arguably the best rated app for Windows Phone. This positively reflects just how much revenue the free ad-supported indie game is raking in. While no exact numbers have been published as-of-yet, they do note in the interview that they've earned over $70,000.

"Taptitude has been out for just over a year but in the first 4 months we only made $500.  At the time we were pretty happy with that, but in reality it wasn't even enough to cover a much needed server upgrade. Our great user community ended up donating the required funds for the upgrade.

Despite being a slow start, we're now pulling in 10-15k per month in ad revenue, and yet we've never been very highly downloaded (ranked 150th ATM). The lesson here is to never give up, just make the game you want to play and you’ll be rewarded one way or another. If nothing else, you'll learn something that can be applied to your next project."

4Bros Studio is built up of four brothers, three of whom work for Microsoft. This is a real testament to the quality of personnel at the company and how even employees are able to create some fantastic projects for consumers to enjoy on company platforms. Be sure to read up the full interview at AdDuplex.

As a side note - should you have not yet checked out Taptitude, be sure to download it (for free) from the Marketplace.

Source: AdDuplex Blog

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