Term Paper: PR Communications Process Analysis

Pages: 6 (1756 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 1+  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Communication - Journalism  ·  Buy This Paper

PR STRATEGY of MICROSOFT INC.

A company always needs to be in touch with the general public in order to let them know about its current events. It is also a good way of letting them know about the recent progress and major newsworthy events. They constantly need to be in the public eye. In order to do that they have to make sure that they have great relations with the public and they have to keep them informed in every way. It is important to get publicity for the company in every way. The best way to do this is to hire a PR firm to promote the company's best interests in any possible form. It is important for the PR firm to make sure that it can tackle everything with the help of press releases, news conferences for product releases and other events etc. this can help them get free media exposure in any way possible. It is better than advertising with any media outlet as it ensures a lot of publicity without going the extra mile. However it can help to advertise in the media as it can help the company with creative control over the promotion. However with public relations one can't control how the media perceives the given information. It is useful when the general public reads a third party article regarding a company's product. It is more valuable than advertising as the article provides an insight to the product. It can also help the consumer make up his/her mind as it is an article which offers an independent opinion.

A company has to always be in the news and generate buzz around its products. The company has to make sure that it finds new and innovative methods to promote its products and make them a buzz word. There may be events in the company which can they may also have to use some damage control in order to show the company in a positive light. A company can get massive publicity if they promote a major event. This can get a lot of attention from the press and can boost the reputation of the company.

We can cite the example of Microsoft. They are the biggest software company in the world. They have had a rough ride throughout the years. However they have always relied on their PR to help them get through everything. Microsoft is well-known for seeking publicity. It is constantly in the news. Microsoft launched the Xbox in 2001. The Xbox gaming console was to compete with two other gaming consoles. Microsoft spent around $500 million dollars promoting the Xbox. Microsoft played an important PR Card by sponsoring a major event. Microsoft made sure that the Xbox was one of the main sponsors of the Lollapalooza Music Festival in 2003. This was one of the biggest publicity drives ever since the console was launched in 2001. The sole reason for sponsoring this event was to make sure that the Xbox would be a household name. It helps to make sure that a product is constantly in the news. This would also gain a lot of publicity for the Xbox by bringing the generation Y closer to the wonders of the Xbox. This sort of publicity brings a good name to the corporation and can let people sample the products before buying it.

Microsoft has made a lot of efforts to gain a PR Coup. They managed to gain a victory in 1999 when they recruited Gary Kasparov, (an internationally renowned grand chess champion) to compete in an online chess tournament against the world. Players from al all over the world united together and honed their skills to challenge Kasparov on the MSN Gaming network. The end result was that Kasparov won the match after months of intense play. This was one of the most interactive gaming sessions in history. It attracted more than 3 million visitors to the MSN Network. It also got a total of 28 million page views and attracted 58,000 world team players from more than 75 countries. This event was a major success as the MSN network got a lot of publicity. This was a major PR move on Microsoft's part.

Another great PR Tool is the use of press releases. Microsoft has often used press releases to inform the public of its accomplishments. The Xbox can be cited as an example. The Xbox was sold for $299 dollars when it first came out. The prices were slashed a couple of times to make it more affordable and to counter the competition. They made sure that the public got to know of their actions through a press release. The press release reminded the general public about the success of the Xbox, its online gaming network, library of games, as well as its capabilities. The press release has proven to be a very effective way of communicating the message to people. Another press release also showed data from an independent group which tracks the sales of consoles. It compared the growth of the Xbox as compared to other consoles. The Xbox's lead grew while the lead of the other consoles declined. This was also a great PR move as it let people know that the Xbox was doing well. This is very important as the Xbox was dismissed as a failure before it came out. It suffered from a lack of sales in Japan. Despite slow sales in Japan, the Xbox managed to be the second largest console developer in the world. Promoting a positive image of the Xbox would benefit its life span. Therefore it is crucial for Microsoft to keep releasing important press statements regarding its product's success.

Organizations such as Microsoft believe that they should play a great role in helping the community. They should be charitable and help charitable causes in every way. Microsoft gained a lot of publicity by promoting their fund raising activities. Donating money to charity is the right PR move for them as it helps them bask in the limelight. Their charitable efforts are well-known. The employees of Microsoft Corp donated more than $16 million dollars to charity in 1999. This helped them win the United Way Spirit of America Award in 1999. This award gained a lot of publicity for them. Another example of a good PR effort is when the Red Cross and the MSN network hosted a virtual auction in 2000 to raise funds for disaster relief and humanitarian services. Furthermore Microsoft's chairman Bill Gates set up a huge charitable foundation to help people in need. Even though this foundation was set up with bill gate's personal assets, it gave Microsoft a lot of publicity. Bill Gates gave millions of dollars to India to fight deadly disease. He also set up a college fund for underprivileged children. Microsoft's image had been tarnished due to anti-trust allegations. Donating money and time to charitable causes has been a successful PR move.

Microsoft has always promoted its products in a very lavish way. One of the most lavish launches was the launch of Windows 95. They spent over $1 billion dollars promoting the launch around the world. Despite the fact that they spent a lot of money advertising and promoting it, they managed to gain a lot of publicity as people got curious about it. It was major PR coups paying the Rolling Stones to allow Microsoft to use their song "start me up" in their ad campaign. They also took out a number of tv and print ads in more than 25 countries. Microsoft also planned a number of publicity stunts around the world. Things got even better with the launch of windows xp in 2001. Microsoft paid Madonna millions of dollars to use her song "ray of light" for the windows xp launch. They even paid singer Alanis Morissette to entertain the crowds at the Windows XP festivities. This was a free concert. It got them a lot of mileage as the whole media covered the event and wrote up about it keeping Microsoft in the news. One of the most recent events to date was the launch of the most anticipated game titles "halo 2" for the Xbox. This was one of the biggest publicity drives ever. Microsoft promoted this event relentlessly. They made sure that the event was covered by the worldwide media. They managed to get hundreds of gamers, celebrities and paparazzi to attend the launch of "halo 2" around the world. This launch was very important for the Xbox as it would let the world know of its capabilities. It would also prove that the Xbox is a killer console and that its latest game was a masterpiece in every way. Microsoft got a lot of free publicity when a French version of Halo 2 was leaked on to the internet a week before the launch. Even though it did not harm the launch, it got a lot of publicity as the game was… [END OF PREVIEW]

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