Out of the Cube and Onto The Tube

AMD has apparently come with a Prescott Survival Kit. You can find out more about it here and here.

What do I think of it? Actually, as far as it goes, I very much like it (though I have to wonder if the jokers will be in the same boat as the jokee in a while). Shows that there’s a few people with enough gumption to take the fight to Intel

Problem is, only a handful of people will ever get these things, though (hint, hint, AMD) rather more would probably be willing to buy one.

Even then, though, the vast, vast majority of computer buyers will never get a whiff of this.

They’re too busy hearing ding-dongs.

That Damn Ding-Dong

You know what I’m talking about. The Intel ding-dong, the Muzak of computing.

You can remember it now. You’ll remember it tomorrow, next year, in the nursing home. Hell, it’s probably encoded itself into your DNA by now to be passed on to future offspring.:)

It’s a vocal virus, an auditory worm, that crawls into people’s heads, unobstrusively, stealthily. And it has been, for a long, long time.

This is the climate in media, like it or not. Losers and lamers can whine about the unfairness, but that’s like the Anarctica Tourist Board whining that it’s unfair it’s so cold there. It is worse than stupid; it is useless.

How does a company like AMD fight that? More to the point, how does a company like AMD fight that with no money compared to the ding-dongers?

If You Can’t Make Many, Make Them Memorable

Obviously, Intel does plenty of overt advertising, but with a couple exceptions (which tend to be remembered dubiously), they’ve been eminently forgettable.

If you asked the average person, “Intel advertising, what comes to mind?” odds are, they’ll remember the subliminal ding-dong.

That’s good for Intel, but let’s face it, subliminal messages are weak and subject to challenge.

What is the most memorable computing TV ad of all time? It’s the 1984 Apple ad during the Super Bowl introducing the Macintosh.

It was shown twice.

There were three computing ads shown during the Super Bowl that year. Can you name the other two?

There’s two ways to advertise effectively. The first is to carpetbomb your way into people heads by sheer numbers. That’s what Intel has done over the course of time. They don’t even have to be good, there just has to be a lot of them over a long period of time.

AMD can’t possibly compete that way. They don’t have the money to come even close to matching Intel’s efforts today, much less counter the ingraining that’s occurred year-in, year-out.

Nor can AMD fight fire with fire. Trying to counter Intel marketing with a techie ad here and there is like trying to stop an ant invasion by sending out a couple termites.

No, what AMD needs to do is to get the maximum bang for their limited buck by making whatever advertising they do as intensely interesting as possible. Funny, outrageous, bold. In a word, memorable.

That’s how you get bang for the buck.

AMD ads need to show the spirit that gave birth to that Survival Kit. Actually, even more than that. Go on the attack, what do you have to lose? What has playing it safe gotten AMD?

Make people think about the company, if only to say, “Who are these AMD people?”

Email Ed

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