Why Microsoft Wins

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Last month Microsoft invited 14 bloggers (including Ryan Stewart from the ColdFusion community) to meet Bill Gates. This is one of the reasons Microsoft wins, because they’re brilliant marketers. At first I didn’t know what to think about this outreach to the Blogger community. But after the free Ferrari laptop debacle, I understand what Microsoft was doing.On the outside, it appeared that Microsoft wanted to hear the opinions of bloggers, and discuss new technologies. But one wonders why they’d need to invite 14 to their offices, when they could easily read and comment on their blogs.The brilliance of this move lies in their motivations. Microsoft has just converted 14 bloggers into Microsoft evangelists, if they weren’t that already. And in the process, they looked like a benevolent software company that is trying to listen to their customers. And Microsoft gave the bloggers a sneak peak at upcoming technologies, which of course guarantees a lot of glowing reviews on their respective blogs. Oh, and the fact that the bloggers were not allowed to share recordings of this session does even more to foster a ‘your our trusted friend’ attitude, and makes the bloggers feel like insiders, which of course will generate a lot more positive blog posts.But I don’t blame Microsoft for doing this. I just think they could be a little more transparent with their motives.